Care home managers are responsible for the leadership and day-to-day running of residential care homes.
Salary range: £20,000 to £54,000
How to become a care home manager
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- an apprenticeship
- working towards this role
You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in a subject like health and social care management before applying for a place on a graduate trainee scheme.
You’ll usually need:
- 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
- equivalent entry requirements
- student finance for fees and living costs
- university courses and entry requirements
You may be able to start on a higher apprenticeship for children, young people and families managers, or care leadership and management, then do further on-the-job training.
You could do a leader in adult care higher apprenticeship.
You’ll usually need:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
You can apply for training if you’re working in social care, for example as a deputy manager.
It’s recommended that you start the Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care and Children and Young People’s Services within 3 months of taking up your job. You’ll need to complete it within 2 to 3 years.
There are 6 pathways to choose from, which are:
- Management of Adult Services
- Management of Adult Residential Services
- Practice in Adult Services
- Management of Children and Young People’s Services
- Management of Children and Young People’s Residential Services
- Practice in Children and Young People’s Services
The previous qualifications required to work as a care home manager are still valid if you have them but are no longer available to study. Your employer will now support you to do the Level 5 Diploma.
You’ll be expected to already have qualifications relevant to the care services your home provides, for example:
- NVQ Level 4 in Health and Social Care
- nursing, physiotherapy or occupational therapy qualification and registration
- social work qualification and registration
Check the Skills for Care advice on meeting workforce regulations for more details.
You can get more advice about working as a care home manager from Think Care Careers.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
- knowledge of psychology
- customer service skills
- sensitivity and understanding
- knowledge of English language
- the ability to work well with others
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- the ability to understand people’s reactions
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
Restrictions and requirements
You’ll need to:
What you’ll do
As care home manager, you will work to strict legal requirements including health and safety to:
- provide information, advice and support to residents, families and staff
- promote residents’ rights and duties and encourage them to join activities
- help residents to access local services and take part in the local community
- monitor business performance and quality of care
- agree contracts, budgeting and fundraising
- develop policies and practices and keep confidentiality
- recruit, train and supervise staff
As a children’s home manager you may:
- look after the welfare of children in your care
- make sure that quality standards are met
- enable access to local education, health and other services
- promote children’s rights and duties
- take part in care planning, statutory case reviews and conferences
- develop positive behaviour and discipline
- respond to child protection concerns and complaints
You could work at an adult care home or at a children’s care home.
Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding.
Career path and progression
With experience, you could become a regional manager within a large healthcare company or charity. You could also work as a freelance consultant or a care home inspector.