Professional development for aged care

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Investing in professional development opportunities is an investment in developing your business’s number one asset — its people. Helping your employees to understand their worth and recognise their own abilities in the workplace can go a long way to increasing not only motivation, but job satisfaction.

It is evident that there is a strong need for improved quality of care provided to senior Australians within the aged care sector. The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety’s Interim Report released last year found that “the aged care system fails to meet the needs of its older, vulnerable, citizens. It does not deliver uniformly safe and quality care, is unkind and uncaring towards older people and, in too many instances, it neglects them.” While there are many excellent aged care workers delivering exceptional care, it is clear that more needs to be done to support the industry and cultivate workforces that prioritise skills and knowledge.

It’s no secret that the aged care industry is a growing one in Australia. Currently more than 3,000 aged care providers across the country are delivering care through around 9,000 aged care services, with those figures set to expand in alignment with the ageing population of Australia. In 2016 the sector employed over 366,000 aged care workers — by the year 2050, it is predicted that approximately 3.5 million Australians will be accessing aged care services, calling for a workforce of almost one million aged care professionals. With this huge growth in mind, now is the time to begin the process of ensuring all aged care providers have highly skilled employees. This begins with a renewed appreciation and commitment to regular, ongoing professional development.

Professional development in aged care

Professional development for upskilling the aged care workforce

Professional development facilitates upskilling, learning and growth for the aged care sector and its workers. The provision of opportunities for learning and growth should be ongoing, contributing to a range of benefits for carers, their employers and the recipients of their care.

The world we live in is fast-paced. Technology, quality standards, expectations — they’re all subject to evolve quickly, and so too are people. Today’s workforce needs to be ready to adapt, and up-to-date knowledge is at the centre of its ability to do so. For employees to feel satisfied at work, they need the chance to build confidence in their individual capacity. This is where professional development and upskilling become so vital.

Enhancing the quality standard delivered by aged care services

The aged care industry is set to be overhauled in the wake of the Royal Commission, with a focus on high quality care. Furthermore, being proactive about building the skills of your workforce is a simple yet effective way of taking a holistic approach to enhancing your aged care business.

Retain staff

Linkedin Learning’s 2019 Workplace Learning Report found that 94% of employees would stay with a company longer if it invested in their learning and development. An employee who feels supported and fulfilled at work is one who stays. Professional development can be an excellent way to show your staff that you value them, while saving you time and money on recruitment.

Increase productivity

With the confidence and capabilities gained through additional training, you can expect your workforce to be more efficient and productive. When your team is highly trained, they also have the latest and greatest knowledge to benefit the way they approach their roles.

Raise your standard

Aged care professionals who are provided with high quality training are more confident and better able to provide the highest possible standard of care.

A committed workforce through professional development

The incredible benefits of professional development for your business can have a positive impact on each individual carer professionally, as well as personally.

Up to date knowledge and skills

Keeping industry know-how up to date is vital and regular professional development means your staff will have the latest information and tools to do their job to the highest standard.

Work life satisfaction

In 2019, Deloitte released their annual Global Human Capital Trends report, which revealed the need for learning and development as top-rated challenge. The report even cited learning opportunities as a leading reason for people choosing to take a particular job! Knowing that their employer has invested in them and their skillset is incredibly rewarding.

Increased confidence

Confidence at work enables employees to do a better job with more enjoyment and less stress. In turn, this makes getting up for work every day much easier for everyone on your team. Professional development training builds staff confidence and sparks passion.

Motivating staff to learn

To get the most out of upskilling and training your team, you need to show your employees that professional development will be worth their time and energy. There are many ways to do this, including:

Take an innovative approach

The training you offer your staff needs to engage them, stimulate them and excite them. If you offer the same training each year, chances are it will be met with disinterest and your workforce is unlikely to learn and grow. Be innovative and tailor your professional development to your unique business and staff.

Listen to your staff

Talk to your employees, listen to what they want and need, survey teams anonymously and ask for feedback and insights to guide your approach professional development. The training should help your team to be better and do better, and they can help you identify gaps in their own skillsets that need to be filled.

Make it worthwhile

For committed uptake, training should respect your employees’ time. Firstly, it should be scheduled in such a way that is respectful of their lives and other commitments. Secondly, it should be worth their time. Often this means the professional development is goal-oriented, enabling them to extend their skills with the potential view of advancing in their careers.

Culture of continuous learning

Professional development makes it possible for your business to support a team of employees in gaining more skills and knowledge and increasing job satisfaction. Your workplace can benefit from reduced staff turnover, a committed team and a higher quality of care provided by your aged care facility.

To support you in delivering continued learning and growth opportunities to your employees, Royal College can deliver ongoing professional development that will fulfil the needs of your business and your staff now and in the future. Courses such as our Certificate IV in Ageing Support (CHC43015) or Disability (CHC43115), are specifically designed to support the vital aged care sector and all of the organisations and people within in.


Cultivate a culture where continuous learning and growth to lift the standard of care delivered by your workforce. Speak with Royal College today about using professional development goals and how we can help you get started.


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ITECA - Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia
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