HCPA, in partnership with Hertfordshire County Council, have secured funding from the European Structural and Investment Funds (managed by the Department of Work and Pensions) for more quality training for the sector.

The Care to Step Up programme has been designed to support the 27,000 Care professionals employed in the Hertfordshire Private, Voluntary and Independent (PVI) adult social care sector to attain higher levels of training, supporting career progression and staff retention.

What does Care to Step Up aim to achieve?

  • Support managers and proprietors to understand the importance of up-skilling the workforce
  • Contribute to the implementation of workforce development strategies and plans
  • Increase Care professionals skills and knowledge
  • Offer modular courses at various levels
  • Provide Care professionals with Information, Advice and Guidance for career development
  • Address skills gaps across Hertfordshire to PVI adult social care organisations with well trained staff
  • Empower Care professionals to provide good quality, person-centred care
  • Utilise the Impartial Feedback Service and Skills Audit to identify strengths, weaknesses and gaps in organisation’s skills set.
  • Identify and facilitate relevant training available from the Care to Step Up project
  • Skills Audit – identifies knowledge, confidence, and competency of individuals – IFS report and action plan for Employers to understand the development needs of staff, identified gaps in training and support with accessing the Care to Step Up Programme or other provision if required.
  • Collaboratively work with HCC Monitoring Teams and Clinical Commissioning Groups/ Integrated Care Boards to identify training needs


  • Staff are able to develop themselves
  • Local authority confident in providing good quality care services
  • Adult residents access quality care services
  • Care Service will become more stable, leading to less provider failure offering more choice and diversity

Project Objectives

  • Address the basic skill needs of employed people particularly in SME’s and Micro businesses
  • Increase skill levels to encourage progression in employment
  • Increase the number of people with technical and job specific skills to support business growth
  • Increase the skills levels of employed women to encourage progression in employment – help address the gender employment and wage gap.

Impact/Results for Participants

Staff that engage with training will:

  • Feel more confident in their job role and communicating with other professionals
  • Have improved well-being
  • Be part of a valued workforce
  • Increase skills and knowledge
  • Be committed to their role
  • Be motivated
  • Have information and advice to develop their career
  • Provide high quality care
  • Improve their basic skills
  • Enhance their training records
  • Have the potential to increase their earning power
  • Support the vulnerable adults they work with to make healthier life choices

Impact/Results for HCC ACS Partners and Professionals

  • Range of providers with good quality health and care services.
  • Range of statutory services with well trained staff teams.
  • Wide range of adult social care businesses available who are stable and able to grow.
  • Confidence in staffing teams.
  • Monitoring and inspections may see a reduction in the use of Agency staff.
  • Reduction in unnecessary hospital admissions, ambulance call outs and readmissions.
  • Improved monitoring and inspection scores which could provide cost savings in terms of re-inspections when standards are low.

Impact/Results for Individuals Who Use ASC Services

  • Receive quality services tailored to personal needs.
  • Experience fewer falls.
  • Have competent adult care services with trained staffing teams.
  • Have care and support they require.
  • Have improved specialist care and support from staff.
  • Range of thriving adult care services and provided in a timely manner.
  • Care service that can support individuals to make healthier choices.

Impact/Results for Herts Citizens

  • Have good quality adult health and social care providers.
  • Stay independent for longer.
  • Benefit from increased economic activity that a growing adult social care market could contribute to the Herts economy.


The European Social Fund aims to improve employment opportunities and help you if you are looking for work.
The Department for Work and Pensions uses this funding to:
• provide a wide range of services for people of working age
• promote gender equality and equal opportunities
• promote sustainable and quality employment
• promote social justice by combating poverty and any discrimination
• provide help for those who find work but need continued support

All this means the European Social Fund will help you to identify and overcome the barriers you might face in moving into work
and help you to achieve your potential. Whilst attending this provision, you may also receive help towards the cost of childcare and travel expenses.

Why the DWP needs personal information and how they treat it.

The DWP treat personal information carefully. They may use it for any of their purposes. To learn more about information rights and how
they use information, please visit www.gov.uk/dwp/personal-information-charter 
If you want to know more about the Department for Work and Pensions and European Social Fund in your area, contact your nearest jobcentre on www.gov.uk/contact-jobcentre-plus 
Or, if you wish to know more about European Social Fund in general, you can visit www.ec.europa.eu/esf 


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