502 Level 5

It is important to continue professional development by improving knowledge to enhance practice to ensure you are up to date on the latest information which affects the client group you are working for.   This ensures your practice is relevant and evidence based with the most recent information to support the needs of the client group you support.   It is a professional duty to ensure your own skills and knowledge are up to date and Standard 6 of the code of Practice for Social Care workers states that ‘As a Social Care worker, you must be accountable for the quality of your work and take responsibility for maintaining and improving your knowledge and skills,’
General Social Care Council, Codes of Practice for Social Care Workers 2010

Applying this standard in practice ensures that you are a safe practitioner who is working within the laws of the land and whose knowledge is current and maintained by attending relevant training appropriate to your work.   To do so allows for such knowledge to be disseminated to others contributing to their ongoing learning and development from a trusted source.   This allows for the continuity of effective care standards between all those involved and supports a safer working practice.

While it is important and indeed expected of social care staff to ensure their professional development is maintained there are factors which can have an impact on this.   Such barriers as listed by Skills for Care.org.uk are:

Organisational barriers:
• Poor communication
• Lack of resources or budget
• Staff shortages,
• No encouragement from my manager
• No training opportunities within an organisation or No time to train  
• Inadequate supervision or appraisal systems within an organisation

Personal Barriers:
• Low self-esteem to achieve or progress
• Being over confident or stubborn (unwilling to admit training is required)
• Transport problems
• Possible Language barriers
• Childcare issues (when training is arranged...