Job market experts predict a 25% growth in the Australian aged care sector over the next five years. Caring for the elderly or the disabled jobs are rather challenging, but also highly-rewarding.
Here’s what you need to know if you want to start a career in this sector, where the average pay is between $50 and $60,000 per year.
Do you need a qualification to work in the aged care sector?
Most positions in the aged care sector do not require any sort of qualification. Many establishments for the elderly or the disable offer intensive training.
In most cases, an aged care worker is expected to help elderly patients with daily activities, such as washing and grooming, clothing, feeding and assisting those with mobility issues get where they need to be. None of these tasks requires much training.
However, if you want to have a career in aged care and rise to the top of your profession you should consider getting a Certificate III in Individual Support or a Certificate IV in Ageing Support.
You can get such a certificate by attending a TAFE course or enrolling in a private training institution.
Having formal instruction will allow you to apply for a senior position. You can also earn more if you can perform basic health care procedures.
Why do I need a background check to work in the aged care sector?
Many people are surprised to hear they need to submit to a background check for aged care to get a job whose description includes mundane tasks such as helping a grandpa put his coat on and accompanying grandma to her doctor’s appointment.
It’s not about the job requirements but the people you’ll be interacting with on a daily basis.
Some senior citizens are full of energy and only require minimal help, but others are quite frail and may suffer from dementia. Such people need protection. A career needs to be a person of a good character, which is why background checks are necessary.
Under Australian law, aged care workers need to undergo a national police check before they can be hired.
How can I find out what’s on my criminal record?
If you’ve been in trouble with the law before you’ll want to know what your criminal record looks like. Having a criminal record doesn’t mean you cannot get a job in the aged care sector. In most cases, it’s up to the recruiter to decide if a candidate is suitable for a job.
If you want to be prepared for the job interview, you should order online police check on yourself. This can be easily done through an online agency specializing in background checks. You can use the services of any approved provider however a popular and reliable place to obtain the check is the ANCC website given here: https://www.australiannationalcharactercheck.com.au/ – they are inexpensive and work very fast. You’ll have the national police check sent to your email normally in 48 hours or so.
If you were only convicted of a minor offence and it was years ago, there’s a possibility it has become spent in the meantime so you have nothing to worry about. For minor offences there’s 10 years waiting period, during which, obviously, you mustn’t be charged with other offences.
Once you get your police check it’s time to start browsing online job platforms looking for an open position in your area.