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Guide to finding the right Agency for Health and Social Care providers

  • December 12, 2023
Guide to agency

Choosing the right employment agency to supply nurses, care assistants, and support workers is crucial for ensuring you have access to qualified and experienced staff to meet your healthcare needs. Here are some key factors to consider when making your decision:

  1. Experience and expertise: Look for an agency with a proven track record of providing healthcare staffing services. Check their experience in placing nurses, care assistants, and support workers in similar roles and settings. If they are registered with CQC - check their rating also as this will help give an indication of their understanding of compliance. Also how long have they been trading and are they registered with TEAM or REC?

  2. Network of candidates: Ensure the agency has a strong network of qualified and trained candidates in your area. They should be able to access a wide range of profiles, including experienced healthcare professionals and those with specialised skills or certifications.

  3. Matching capabilities: Assess the agency's ability to match candidates to your specific requirements. They should understand your staffing needs, including the type of positions, experience levels, and any special skills or qualifications required.

  4. Cost transparency: Obtain clear information about the fees and charges associated with the agency's services. Compare their pricing structure to other agencies to ensure they offer competitive rates. Its important to check that their staff are employed via PAYE as It ensures that employees are paying the right amount of tax: PAYE calculates the amount of tax and NI that each employee should pay based on their salary, tax code, and any other relevant factors. This helps to ensure that employees are not paying too much or too little tax. It also reduces the risk of tax fraud: PAYE makes it more difficult for employees to evade tax by under-declaring their income. You can ask the agency able for proof of their current PAYE Status fo show payments are up to date.  Contact the PAYE Helpline for more information:

  5. Communication and support: Evaluate the agency's communication and support services. Ensure they provide prompt responses to enquiries and effectively manage the placement process. Also ask them to send a staff profile to evidence compliance for your CQC file - i.e Training, Experience, Qualifications and DBS for each staff member supplied.

  6. Candidate screening and vetting: Enquire about the agency's screening and vetting procedures for candidates. They should thoroughly assess each candidate's qualifications, experience, references, and complete an enhanced DBS to ensure they meet your standards.

  7. Training: Enquire about the training they offer their staff, does this meet the 15 standards of the care certificate and does this training align with your internal training so that agency staff can fit in with your current staffing team. Consider whether training is delivered face to face or online and the length of the training courses. For example some local authorities request that their safeguarding is accredited by them and some aldo request that physical intervention training is Bild accredited. At Retain our training is endorsed by Skills for Care and other courses such as First Aid is OFQUAL Accredited. We also offer diplomas up ot level 5, training has a positive influence on staff retention offering you continuity and long term support.

  8. Performance management: Ask about the agency's performance management practices for their placed staff. They should monitor and evaluate the performance of their candidates to ensure they are meeting your expectations and providing quality care. i.e how robust are their policies and procedures.

  9. References and testimonials: Seek references from previous clients and check online reviews to understand the agency's reputation and the experiences of other users.

  10. Compliance with regulations: Verify that the agency is compliant with all relevant healthcare regulations. Ensure they follow safe staffing practices and adhere to professional standards.

  11. Flexibility and adaptability: Choose an agency that can adapt to your changing staffing needs and provide solutions for short-term or long-term placements

  12. Insurance: Does the agency have the right insurance to meet your minimum requirements - you can always ask for a copy of their insurance certificate.

By carefully considering these factors, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your specific staffing requirements and provides you with access to qualified and experienced agency staff

If you are looking for Agency staff to support your business click - Agency staffing enquiry | Retain Healthcare | Highly trained staff throughout SW England

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