A-level results day: what are your career options?

16 August 2023

Health care assistant and care home resident cheering

Hi, year 13 students! We understand that choosing a career after completing your A-levels can be difficult. There are endless opportunities out there. If you’re looking for a rewarding role where you can make a difference every day and continue to grow and develop, social care could be the choice for you.

At Exemplar Health Care, we strive to make every day better for our residents. If you love to empower people, working in adult social care might be the perfect career for you.

In this article, we answer some of the common questions that students ask about working in social care, including:

  • What is social care?
  • Is working in adult social care right for me?
  • Do I need any experience to work in care?
  • What roles are available in social care?
  • How can I start a career in care?
  • What do colleagues say about working at Exemplar Health Care?


What is social care?

Social care services support people living with disabilities and illnesses.

This support can cover any aspect of day-to-day life including personal care, social activities, emotional support and eating and drinking.

At Exemplar Health Care, we also support people’s health needs.

For example, some of the people we support have tracheostomies or use ventilators. Others require physiotherapy and occupational therapy input.

Read about the care we provide at Exemplar Health Care.


What roles are available in social care?

There are lots of roles available in social care, as well as opportunities to develop and progress.

If you’re new to care, you could start in a Health Care Assistant or Activities Coordinator role.

From here, you could progress into a senior position or train to become a Registered Nurse.

If you’re interested in going down another career path, you can still make a difference in a support role in our care homes, such as catering, administration, or housekeeping, or in a role in our Central Support Services, such as finance, marketing, IT, legal, HR and learning and development.


Is working in adult social care right for me?

At Exemplar Health Care, our mission is to make every day better for the people we support.

So, if you’re looking for a role where you can make a real difference in people's lives, this is the career for you!

The great thing about social care is that, whilst we value relevant experience and qualifications, they aren’t essential for this role.

What’s really important is that you identify with our values of fun, integrity, responsiveness, success and teamwork.

You also need to be:

  • caring, kind, understanding and calm
  • able to deal with, and defuse, challenging situations
  • energetic and outgoing, with a positive, can-do attitude
  • a great listener and communicator.

If you haven’t worked in the care sector before, we’ll help you feel right at home from the start with our induction, buddy and ongoing training programmes.


How can I start a career in care?  

If you’re looking to go straight into employment, you can apply for a care job via our online job search.

There’s lots of information about what it’s like to work as a Health Care Assistant with us on our website.

You can also read about our Activities Coordinator jobs, care home support jobs and Central Support Services jobs.

If you’re still not sure, you can call our friendly Recruitment Team for an informal chat about our roles, or you can arrange to visit one of our care homes to see what it’s all about!


Jobs for students going to university

If you’re going to university to study a relevant degree, such as nursing, occupational therapy and physiotherapy, you could work at one of our care homes alongside your studies to gain valuable experience.

After you’ve completed your degree, we have an extensive learning and development programme to support those who are newly qualified.

For example, we offer a 12 month preceptorship programme for newly qualified Nurses, of which the first 12 weeks are supernumerary.

During this time, you’ll do a one-week induction, have 12 weeks of supernumerary support in practice, access RCNi online learning modules and have regular supervisions with your Preceptor.


“I’ve always wanted to work in healthcare” (Ella)

Health Care Assistant, Ella, has worked at Dearnevale care home in Grimethorpe since leaving school.

She shares: “I’ve always wanted to work in healthcare because I get big satisfaction out of helping others.

“I’ve also thought about doing nursing at university in the future and this is a good stepping stone in my career to becoming a Nurse.

“If I had to give advice to some young people who want a career in health care, just do it!

“It’s a very enjoyable role and I wouldn't change it for the world.”


“It’s different every single day” (Charlie)

Charlie started as an Administrator early on in her career and has flourished since day one.

She loves the variety in her role and sees a lot of potential in her future at Exemplar Health Care.

“In my role, every day is different.

“I have my responsibilities that I do every day to support the running of the home. But then I also have time to interact with our service users and get involved in activities.

“We’re encouraged to get away from our desks and join in and be part of the community, which is really nice.

“It's nice to be part of a team that’s all working towards the same goal, which is to improve the lives of the people we support.”


Rising through the ranks at Exemplar Health Care (Kim)

Another colleague, Kim, started her career in care as a newly qualified Nurse and is now a Registered Manager, responsible for opening a brand new service.

“Exemplar Health Care has shown how you can move up the ladder, and that it really is possible to grow.”

As Kim’s risen through the ranks, she’s made sure to bring up other people with her.

This includes Kim’s deputy, Jayne Fleming.

After seeing potential in Jayne, Kim supported her to progress from Registered Nurse to Unit Manager, then to Clinical Nurse Manager and now Home Manager.


Whether you’re looking for your first full-time job, or looking for a part-time role whilst studying at university, why not consider a career in adult social care?

If you’re ready to take your next step with Exemplar Health Care, visit our online job search.