London Calling: Messages from Newly Qualified Social Workers

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


The Newly Qualified Social Worker (NQSW) programme for social workers in children and families services in England was launched in September 2008 by the Children’s Workforce Development Council (CWDC). The programme was developed to initially run for a three year period, and was designed to make sure that newly qualified social workers receive consistent, high quality support and that those supervising them are confident in their skills to provide support. It aimed to contribute to increasing the number of people who continue their long-term career within social work with children and families (CWDC, 2008). Key elements of the programme include a comprehensive induction, high quality supervision and training, and protected time for professional development. The study sought the views of 55 newly qualified social workers from statutory children and families services in 14 London Boroughs at the end of their first year in practice, having completed the NQSW programme. The study focussed on the newly qualified social worker’s views of their first year in practice and specifically of the nature and quality of support offered to them during the NQSW programme, including supervision. The study also sought to establish whether it was the intention of the participants to remain working in statutory children & families social work. Participant’s views were sought through questionnaires and focus groups. The study identifies the type of support which the newly qualified social workers found most helpful to them during their first year in practice. It also identifies aspects of the NQSW programme and their first year in practice which they perceived as having a negative impact. The impact of these experiences on their future career plans is explored. The study findings are compared to other literature regarding the experiences of early career social workers and retention difficulties in statutory children & families’ social work. The study concludes with key messages for employers and other organisations involved in the support, professional development and retention of social workers.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventInternational Federation of Social Work: Joint World Conference on Social Work & Social Development - Stockhom, Sweden
Duration: 9 Jul 201212 Jul 2012


ConferenceInternational Federation of Social Work: Joint World Conference on Social Work & Social Development

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