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Professional Resources

Recruitment and Retention of Staff

For owners / managers, childcare staff and those wanting to enter the sector. Advice and guidance on all areas of the recruitment process, from individuals starting a career in childcare to employers safe recruitment and retaining quality staff.

Career in childcare

One of the benefits of working in childcare is that it can be a flexible profession. There are a range of full-time, part-time and term-time opportunities available, as well as posts in holiday schemes and out-of-school clubs. You could be a:

  • Volunteer
  • Apprentice
  • Assistant
  • Officer
  • Leader/supervisor
  • Deputy Manager
  • Manager

Do you have the right skills and qualities to succeed in a career in childcare?

  • Enjoy being with children and have an interest in child development
  • Have a good level of spoken and written English
  • Patient, empathetic, caring and unbiased
  • Imaginative and creative
  • Friendly and approachable 
  • Fun with a good sense of humour
  • A positive personality, joyful
  • Great communication and listening skills
  • Hardworking and a team player
  • Trustworthy, punctual and flexible
  • A commitment and desire to life long learning

If you recognise yourself in the skills and qualities list above; working with young children could be an ideal career for you. Early Years Practitioners can have a massive impact on the children they care for, this impact will be sustained throughout the child’s life, right the way through adulthood, it will impact on all aspects of their life including relationships, education and health.

Below are 7 of the many reasons you should consider a career in childcare 

  1. You’ll teach children skills they’ll use for life
  2. It’s much more than just a job – it’s a very rewarding and satisfying career
  3. Job security – parents will always need childcare and there is so much variety and excellent career progression opportunities 
  4. No two days are ever the same, you’ll never be bored or stuck behind a desk
  5. You’ll spend time outdoors on adventures with the children
  6. You’ll have a positive impact on the children you work with, inspiring awe and wonder
  7. You’ll get paid to play all day!

Take a look at this:

Sample (alternative) job advert for a nursery practitioner  Opens new window

for a honest view on working in childcare.

There are many different types of childcare provision and some of these are shown in the document below:

Opportunities in childcare  Opens new window

Or are you considering opening your own childcare business in Leicestershire? Take a look at our information about Becoming a Childcare Provider.

Or are you considering Becoming a Childminder in Leicestershire?

Take a look at our Professional qualifications web page for information about the different qualifications and where you can access them.

Examples of typical roles undertaken by practitioners at varying qualification levels:

Childcare Qualification Pyramid  Opens new window

Men in childcare

In England, less than 3% of the early years workforce is male (DFE Survey of Childcare and Early Years Providers 2018). 

Is your early years provision equipped and prepared to recruit and retain male practitioners? 

  • How well do you support the men in your facility to ensure they are sufficiently protected to stay in their role? 
  • When advertising for staff, does your advert and marketing material appeal to both genders? 
  • Are staff attitudes to male practitioners ‘female-centric’ or gender neutral? 

Managers who are successfully recruiting and retaining male practitioners state that images of their male practitioners are prominently displayed in the setting. Parents are informed that at this setting we are very lucky to employ male practitioners who undertake all the same duties as female practitioners (including nappy changing and toileting).

These managers do not stereotype male practitioners into undertaking specific activities such as football, instead they deploy staff according to their skill set, as they would female practitioners. They are acutely aware of the importance of children seeing and experiencing both genders in all types of role; caring, nurturing and the outdoors. These managers support their male practitioners and confidently articulate to parents that staff duties cannot be assigned or limited due to the gender of staff, gender discrimination is not acceptable.

We are keen to have more men working in childcare across Leicestershire. Please watch our Men in Childcare video to see what a great contribution two men are making in their Leicestershire childcare careers.

Jobs in childcare

A job listings webpage has been developed for people to find jobs in the childcare sector.

View current childcare jobs

Leicestershire providers can advertise their vacancies free of charge by visiting jobs in childcare.

All job advertisements on these pages are made by Leicestershire private, voluntary and independent childcare providers. Leicestershire County Council does not take any responsibility for the content of these notices.

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