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Skills gaps in social care: A rapid review


In light of the policy ambition to increase the professionalism of the social care workforce, this evidence review examines where gaps in the skills of the social care workforce lie. A skills gap analysis, grounded in a scoping review, explored what skills are deemed essential or desirable, what skills are currently possessed, and if there is a gap between the two. The review focuses on the frontline of care and support. It excludes professionals working in adult social care such as social workers, registered nurses and occupational therapists as these have their own professional competencies.

Purpose of study

The main purpose of the study was to understand where and among whom current skills gaps exist in the social care workforce.


November 2021 – April 2022


NIHR Policy Research Programme


This was a scoping review of existing evidence.

Project status: Ongoing

Principal investigators

Prof J Manthorpe

Jill Manthorpe

Professor of Social Work


  • socialcare
  • workforce
  • skills

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