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New toolkit to support safer recruitment in the care sector

02 February 2023
Helen Badger

Social care employers are now able to access a new Better Hiring Toolkit which has been launched by the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Safeguarding experts including, the Better Hiring Institute, Disclosure and Barring Service and Skills for Care, (amongst others) have collaborated together to produce the first of its kind toolkit. The toolkit aims to provide an essential guide for care sector employers making it easier for them to make informed, safer recruitment decisions.

Given that those employed and volunteering in the care sector are entrusted to look after some of the most vulnerable in society, the toolkit recognises that a robust and safer approach to sharing effective references and conduct information is the earliest opportunity organisations have to prevent people who may be unsuitable from fulfilling those roles. Whilst sharing effective references and conduct information across the sector is not a new concept, many employers have experienced challenges in obtaining and providing this information.

The toolkit includes information on:

  • Legal responsibilities
  • How to gather references and conduct information 
  • What to do with the information received
  • How to share references and conduct information 

It also provides case studies based on real life scenarios and a FAQ section covering legal considerations and data protection.

It is hoped that the Better Hiring Toolkit will:

  • raise standards in the care sector
  • provide a one-stop shop for industry best practice
  • encourage an increase in sharing information – including Barring referrals

Given some of the difficulties employers in the sector face during the recruitment process including refusals by previous employers to complete reference requests, or provision of insufficient information or even failure to provide “evidence of conduct” (which is a legal requirement made by the CQC) it is hoped that the new toolkit will encourage better and more timely sharing of information. This in turn should speed up the recruitment process, which, given the current staff shortages experienced by the sector, can only be a positive thing.

A copy of the toolkit can be accessed for free, click below.

Download free toolkit

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