Implications of labour markets for the social care workforce: report

Independent research on the influence of national and local labour markets on the social care sector.

Appendix B: Alignment of survey sample with the workforce

Table B.1 shows how the profile of the employees responding to the research survey compares to the overall social care workforce in Scotland (as defined through the latest SSSC Workforce Report). The key points to note between the two are:

  • The survey sample is generally representative of the overall social care workforce by gender, age and geography;
  • The survey is over-represented in terms of children’s services[161]. This is likely due to the strong survey promotion through ELC routes;
  • The survey is over-represented in those of a White ethnic group, although this disparity is likely to be due to the large share of the workforce whose ethnic group is ‘unknown’ (17%);
  • The survey is over-represented by full-time workers when compared to the workforce. This may be because full-time workers are likely to have greater access to IT/computers and more opportunities to complete the online survey; and
  • It is difficult to compare job roles, given that the survey asks ELC workers to classify their job roles differently (e.g. support worker, practitioner, or lead practitioner).
Table B.1: Comparison of Scottish social care workforce and survey sample


Survey Sample
Female 85% 89%
Male 15% 11%
Under 25 years 10% 9%
25 to 34 years 19% 17%
35 to 44 years 19% 21%
45 to 54 years 26% 30%
55-64 years 20% 21%
Over 64 years 2% 2%
Not know/prefer not to say 3% 1%
White 80% 95%
Mixed 0% 0%
Asian 1% 0%
Black 1% 1%
Other 1% 1%
Unknown 17% 1%
Larger cities 30% 26%
Urban with substantial rural 32% 36%
Mainly rural 29% 30%
Islands and remote 4% 4%
Children’s service 25% 59%
Adult services 66% 40%
Other 9% 8%
Job role
Administrative/Support Worker (e.g. clerical, finance, HR) 5% 5%
Ancillary Worker (e.g. catering, domestic, gardening) 7% 0%
Care staff who provide direct care and support (for example support workers in DCC services) 51% 23%
Care staff who may supervise work of staff and contribute to the assessment of care needs and development and implementation of care plans (e.g. senior residential care workers) 20%
Care staff who are responsible for assessment of care needs (e.g. social workers, occupational therapists, registered nurses) 9%
Unit/Project Manager – Has responsibility for the management of care and service provision in a discrete service delivery 5% 8%
Group Manager – Has overall responsibility for the management of care and service provision in two or more discrete service delivery areas (e.g. a group of care homes, a care home comprising a number of service delivery units) 1% 5%
Director/Chief Executive – Has the highest level of overall responsibility for the management of care and service provision. Staff at this level are on the organisations’ governing body 0% 2%
Job Function Not Known 3% n/a
Lead practice/service manager (ELC only) n/a 15%
Practitioner (ELC only) n/a 28%
Support worker (ELC only) n/a 13%
Mode of working
Full-time 50% 68%
Part-time 50% 32%
No qualifications n/a 4%
Other qualifications 4%
SCQF 1-5 + 92%
SCQF 6 + 75%
SCQF 7 + 55%
SCQF 8 + 28%
SCQF 9 + 15%
SCQF 10-12 6%

Source: SSSC Workforce data (2017) and ekosgen survey data (2019)



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