Release of the Aged Care Workforce Narrative

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Based on survey responses from over 109,000 aged care employees, the Aged Care Workforce Industry Council has published a report today highlighting 12 key insights into the aged care workforce.

The publication, known as the Aged Care Workforce Narrative, explores data collected from 2009 to 2019.

According to the report, older workers cite their relationship with their clients as their main motivation, but younger workers are more likely to value the location, reputation, opportunities and job security provided by their employer. As the number of younger workers in the sector continues to increase, the main motivation of the workforce is likely to shift from mainly altruistic to more practical concerns.

The report also shows that there have been some improvements in the workforce over time.

  • Aged care workers’ satisfaction with the quality of their colleagues has increased.
  • Most aged care workers now agree that their employer addresses training and skills issues. While only 50% of employees agreed that there was investment in training at the beginning of the decade, that rating gradually improved to 62% at the end of the decade.
  • Aged care workers indicate that the number of quality staff being retained has increased.

The four most common reasons that aged care employees gave for leaving their current employer during the 10 years from 2009-2019 were retirement, low pay, poor management and excessive workload.

CEO of the Aged Care Workforce Industry Council, Louise O’Neill, said that the Workforce Narrative will support employers in the aged care sector to make evidence-led decisions about workforce planning.

“We know that there is an enormous amount of pressure on aged care providers to build and maintain a sustainable workforce as the demand for care increases.

“This new resource will enable the sector to gain a deeper understanding of how their employees feel about their roles, what attracts people to work in aged care, and the most common reasons why they leave.

“Alongside the data and insights, we have provided suggested actions that employers can take to improve morale and retention rates, based on what the data tells us.

“I encourage all aged care providers to use the Workforce Narrative to inform their planning and employee programs, and thereby allow their employees – and by consequence older Australians – to thrive,” she said.

The insights in the narrative are built upon the most comprehensive overview of aged care worker sentiments in Australia, the Aged Care Census Database. The database, which is produced by BPA Analytics in partnership with the Aged Care Workforce Industry Council, is also available to assist with workforce planning.

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