5 reasons to hire your own paid carer
If you want to have full control over the care and support that you or a loved one receives, then the best way of doing that is to hire your own paid carer. Whether you are a self-payer or you are receiving a Personal Budget to spend on care and support, choosing to employ a carer yourself means that you can get exactly the services and hours that you need, at the price you want to pay.
There are certain responsibilities involved in becoming an employer, including setting up a contract, arranging payment, notifying HMRC, adhering to employment rights and rules, and so on. But once these things are set up, or outsourced (to a payroll company, for example), day to day is fairly straightforward.
Here are our five top reasons why we think employing your own personal carer can be the right move to ensure you receive the care you need how you want it.
Build a connection
When you use an agency to provide a carer to meet your needs, the carer is often on a time schedule and can spend less time with you than you would (or indeed, they would like). With appointments as short as 15 minutes, and often a rota of staff who may turn up, it’s difficult to create a personal bond with your carer. By employing your own carer directly, you have a hand in choosing who will be delivering your care. You know the same person will turn up each time and you can employ them for as many or as few hours as you need, even if just for company.
Again, some agencies can only provide a time slot when a carer will turn up to help you with your needs. This makes it hard to plan your days and stick to a routine, especially if your carer comes to help with getting ready in the morning, for example. When you hire a carer yourself, you can draw up a contract with working hours that you would like them to visit. It will be their job to arrive promptly and spend however much time with you that you have requested.
Your carer is working for you, so just like in any other job, they need to be reliable to keep their role. This means being punctual, performing the tasks to a high standard and giving notice of expected absences. You can, for example, write into the contract, that you require two weeks’ notice before they take holiday, which gives you adequate time to arrange temporary cover. Sickness is a different matter, as it can be unexpected, so it pays to have a plan in place to cover these occurrences. However, in general, your carer should be reliable, and if they are not, then you can have procedures in place to deal with this.
The right skills
When you are advertising for a new paid carer and interviewing potential candidates, you can be explicit about your exact needs and requirements. You can choose someone who has the right training or experience to deliver exactly the care that you need, being as specific as you like. You can also, if you wish, offer further training throughout their time with you, so if you need a specific service, you can pay for them to learn more and develop their role.
Manage a budget
When you advertise your position, you can set your price either as a salary or hourly rate. This means that you know exactly what your care will cost you each month, and you can start with just the minimum hours that you need and offer more hours if you require them in the future. This helps you to control your spending on care.