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Two ladies have a drink and enjoy themselves.

A career in home care offers many benefits for flexible work, a range of work options, and the potential to build a meaningful career.

We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions and answers to help clarify what home care work can look like for you.

What is home care?

Home care is in-home professional daily living support for seniors.

What kind of support might I expect to provide?

Home care workers support seniors with simple tasks inside and outside the home. These include shopping, social outings, light household work, cleaning, helping with medications, cooking and food preparation, and ultimately, helping seniors to live at home for longer.

How do I know if I would be suited to working in home care?

Working in home care is perfect for people looking for a fulfilling long-term career. You won’t need any prior qualifications and our free workforce support program will guide you through every step of the way.
If you have soft skills like empathy and patience, enjoy the company of seniors, and you live or can work in NSW or the ACT, a career in home care could be for you.
We also help you with gain requirements including;
● Driver’s licence
● First Aid training
● Connect you with a registered training organisation for additional training options such as Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing and Disability).

What level of flexibility can I expect?

Home care roles can be full-time, part-time or casual. You can take on a workload best suited to your lifestyle and work fewer hours if needed. There are also roles available in a wide range of locations including regional suburbs, giving you the freedom to work where and when you want to work.

What skills or training are required?

You don’t need any to begin, but SSI can support you with gaining new ones, including:
● Professional mentoring and career coaching
● Free accredited and non-accredited training
● Access to specified Home Care Traineeship, including a Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) or Health Services Assistance.

What career development pathways are available?

Home care offers many different opportunities to progress in your career. We can help you upskill and move forward in:
● personal care work
● administration
● home care management
● nursing
● counselling
● care coordination
● allied health – health practitioners who are not doctors, dentists, nurses or midwives. e.g. psychologists, podiatrists, physiotherapists, pharmacists
● speech pathology, and many other career paths.
You can download our Home Care Career Roadmap to view an outline of the different development pathways and find the right one for you.

What are the financial benefits?

Following a decision by the Fair Work Commission, as of 30 June 2023, direct carers and certain senior food services employees nationwide have received a 15 per cent wage increase.
This means that working in home care is recognised for the value and quality of the work, while also matching the growing cost of living.

What non-financial benefits are available?

Home care offers the chance to do meaningful work that has a positive impact.
You can expect flexible working hours and the option to either work full-time or part-time. There are also positions available in many different locations, including regional areas, meaning you can work near where you live, work on a schedule that suits you and be able to maintain a healthy work-life balance.
Through SSI’s Home Care Workforce Support Program, you can also receive a complimentary 12-month My NRMA membership that allows you to access discounts on fuel, electricity, dining, insurance and much more.

Do I need to have completed a Police Check or Working With Children Check?

Yes, but SSI supports you with this process. Our team will walk you through the entire process and even reimburse the cost of Working With Children Checks and National Police checks.

How does SSI support me in finding a job?

Our Participant Service Delivery team supports you in the registration process and covers NDIS costs and background check costs. Where needed, we will also refer you to our training team for any further accreditation you may need.
We also assist with obtaining a driver’s license and car insurance, making sure you’re ready for the job.
We create a Care Profile for every participant that gathers information on your lived experience related to care and helps generate a one-page snapshot of who you are and what your skills are.

How long would it take for me to get a job?

Within 24 hours of your initial query, our team will respond via phone, email or text to begin the eligibility screening process.
Depending on the provider, the placement process can take approximately six to eight weeks, however, we work tirelessly behind the scenes to expedite it as much as possible.
We also provide post-placement follow-up calls at one, three, six and twelve-month intervals that track your progress once you are paired with a provider.

What’s next?

Start your journey in home care by registering for the Home Care Workforce Support Program here.

Carer and lady are happy

Australia’s growing ageing population and workforce shortages impact all generations, not only seniors.

Through strategic recruitment efforts and getting passionate workers into care jobs, we can help seniors across the country receive the support they need now and in years to come.

Aussies are living longer but lonelier

Australians are expected to live longer and healthier than ever before. The number of people over 65 is set to double in the next 40 years, according to the government’s latest Intergenerational Report.

While living longer and healthier is great news, data from the National Mental Health Commission also shows that seniors are more likely to experience loneliness. This is reflected in having fewer close relationships in retirement, health conditions, and living alone in their own homes. In fact, nearly one in five (19 per cent) of people aged 75 and older reported feeling lonely.

A core part of home care work is providing support to combat loneliness. For many seniors, care workers provide the added benefits of developing and maintaining vital connections on a regular basis and encourage a sense of participation with friends, family and in the community.

According to the data, addressing loneliness can even help prevent further chronic physical conditions like heart disease, stroke and even dementia.

Staying home for longer

Seniors are increasingly choosing to live independent lives at home. Research by National Seniors Australia showed 92 per cent of Australians want to stay at home as they age.

Focusing on home care can potentially reduce seniors’ need to prematurely enter aged care homes. Between 2012 and 2022, the number of Australians receiving Commonwealth-funded home care packages — support from the government to cover the costs of accommodation and specific care needs — nearly quadrupled from 55,000 to 216,000.

This rise in seniors requiring support needs to be met with a proportional rise in the availability of people trained to provide support.

CEDA forecasts the need for care and support workers will continue to grow, and by 2030 the Australian care sector will need at least 110,000 more support workers.

Make a difference in home care

Remedying the workforce shortage starts with the simple step of getting more people engaged in the sector. The government-funded Home Care Workforce Support Program (HCWSP) aims to do so by attracting, training and recruiting more aged care workers.

We are delivering the free-to-join program in NSW and the ACT, helping aspiring care workers access opportunities, apply for the roles they are best suited for and upskill with free training where needed.

On an individual level, home care work offers a wide range of flexible work styles that can be both indoors and outdoors, and create a work-life balance with casual, part-time and full-time roles.

Home care is one of the unique careers where you can witness first-hand the positive impact of your work. That sense of fulfilment and knowing you have made a difference in someone’s life is what support workers who are already in the care sector say is the highlight of their work.

If you are considering a new career, changing industries, or looking to help someone and make a difference, working in home care might be a great fit.

Start your journey today by registering your interest in the Home Care Workforce Support Program here, or call us on 1800 849 010.

Two people sitting down at a table discussing home care

If you’re on the lookout for work that is both meaningful and flexible, with a range of career opportunities, then home care could be the perfect fit.

While you might have some idea of what the role involves, there is often a lot more to a job than you might realise.

We’re shining a light on five aspects that can help you decide if home care is the right profession for you.

Home care goes beyond the indoors

Think being a home care worker means being indoors all day? Think again. While providing essential support at home is part of the job, it goes way beyond the home.

Home care workers spend time supporting seniors as they go out and about enjoying life, and across a variety of outdoor activities. From going out for walks to doing grocery shopping, taking seniors to doctor’s appointments or enjoying a cup of tea at a local café, there is often something to do outside.

If you are more of an indoors person, you won’t be disappointed either as there’s a balanced mix of outdoor and indoor activities. The latter may include assisting with meal prep and light cleaning, enjoying a chat over a meal or helping with ironing.

Career that fits around your life

Home care is the ideal match for anyone seeking flexible work that adapts to their lifestyle – whether you’re looking to kickstart a new career, need to juggle work with studying or family commitments, or want to have a side hustle that makes a difference in someone’s life.

You can customise your work to suit your needs and choose full-time, part-time, or casual hours – it is up to you. You also have the freedom to decide where you want to work, making it a great choice for those who want to stay close to home or university or are looking to work around a specific area.

All backgrounds welcome

No matter your background or previous experience, you can be a great candidate to build a meaningful career in home care if you have a sincere desire to help others.

Another plus, no prior qualifications are required, as we can help you get the qualifications you need to build a career in home care.

The government-funded Home Care Workforce Support Program, delivered in NSW and the ACT by SSI, assists you with everything you need to secure a role as a home care worker – from guidance in preparing your CV to organising regulatory checks and undertaking free non-accredited and accredited training like First Aid training. At SSI, we equip you with the skills you need to provide quality care to seniors.

Getting started is free and easy.

Giving back benefits you too

Nothing beats the feeling of going home from work every day knowing you made a meaningful difference in someone’s life. Many carers discover this is the best part of the job because when you give back, you get back even more.

You get the unique opportunity to learn from someone else – someone with years of experience and a wealth of knowledge. Care and support workers go on to form connections with the people they support, often finding that even the smallest shared moments can have a huge impact.

Home care is a rewarding journey that benefits both the carer and the senior, creating life-changing experiences, gaining insightful learnings and witnessing the impact of your work.

Not just a job, it’s a career

Home care offers a wide range of growth and career opportunities. For example, you could go on to become a Care Coordinator or Home Care Manager, or you could use your skills learnt on the job as a springboard into nursing and allied health.

CEO of Eremea Home Care Services Vicki Zalalas entered the sector as a support worker and then started her own business, which she has grown in the past 20 years.

“This job is life-changing, flexible, long-term and full of opportunities. There are many options available in the sector to build a career,” said Vicki.

For more inspiration, take a look at SSI’s Home Care Career Roadmap, which outlines the multiple options available in the sector for advancement and growth.

Start your career journey into home care today by registering your interest at ssi.org.au/homecare or calling us on 1800 849 010.

Our support is tailored to your unique situation and completely free of charge.