geographical areas

You can find information on areas of the UK where we have social work jobs here.


Watch Fran talk about her experience of moving to the UK and working as a social worker in a variety of roles.



The three sectors

The private sector             

Many children’s homes, fostering agencies, assessment centres, support services for people with disabilities, care homes for older people, for example.

Local government              

There are 150 local authorities in England, 22 in Wales and 32 in Scotland. Many social workers are employed by local government. This is also known as “statutory” work. The provision of social services is often divided up into Children’s Services and Adults Services.

  • Children’s Services

  1. Referral and Assessment
  2. Children in Need
  3. Children with Disabilities
  4. Looked After Children
  5. Leaving Care


  • Adults’ Services
  1. Adults with Disabilities
  2. Older People’s Services
  3. Mental Health Services


The voluntary sector         

There are many charities providing specialist services e.g. support for adults with disabilities, children’s homes and children’s centres.




"Qualified" or "unqualified" work

In the UK, we talk about “qualified” and “unqualified” work. It doesn’t mean that you are qualified or not – it refers to the kind of job.

If you have a qualification that a UK Care Council will register you can choose between “qualified” work and “unqualified” work.

If you have a qualification that a UK Care Council will not register, you can only work in “unqualified” work.


Qualified work

Qualified work must be done by people who can register with the relevant Care Council. Often, these jobs are working for local government e.g. Care Manager in Adults Social Care or Social Worker in Children’s Services.

Qualified work means you hold a certain power and responsibility, working with government legislation and frameworks. Often the work requires very good assessment skills, case management and the ability to work with a variety of agencies e.g. police, hospitals, schools etc. The work includes intervention that is backed by legal powers e.g. removing a child from his/her parents if the child is at risk of harm. Often the work is 60%+ in the office, writing reports and keeping records. Report-writing and recording skills are important.

Salaries are often (but not always) higher in qualified work.


Unqualified work

Unqualified work does NOT require Care Council registration. If you have a qualification that could be registered by a UK Care Council, you can still do non-qualified work if you choose. This is especially relevant for social pedagogues who want to work in e.g. homes for children and young people.

In “unqualified work”, salaries are often (but not always) lower than qualified work. Salary ranges depend on the kind of work and usually how much work experience you have.

The work is more direct with clients and often more practical, involving less paperwork and not as much multi-agency working. Some record-keeping is required. This is the delivery of care and support to clients. Often this work requires you to work shifts, which vary from employer to employer.


Jacaranda has its offices in South London, but we have jobs all over England, Wales and Scotland.

Each job vacancy gives you the location of jobs and when you request more information on jobs, we provide you with some facts about the place e.g. population, distance to nearest big town, nearest international airport and special points of interest.

Check our latest vacancies here. To read about the types of social work jobs we can offer, please see type of work.


We have placed social workers and social care professionals in jobs in cities like London, Edinburgh and Cardiff as well as smaller cities and towns.




Anywhere in the UK, you are never more than 72 miles from the coast and we have placed social workers in jobs right by the seaside - and some people have found new watersport hobbies like kite-surfing.


You could be unwinding after work by taking a walk along golden, sandy beaches or enjoying time with new friends at the water's edge.








You could work in areas around London, but not directly in the city. One such area is Kent, known as the Garden of England. The area has many benefits, including close proximity to London and a 1.5 hour train journey to Paris! The population is 1,466,500  of a region that covers 3,500 sq kilometres. It is one of the warmest areas of Great Britain and has a diverse landscape, including beautiful coastal towns, small market towns and larger conurbations.





London is an amazing, exciting and fun place to live and work. Approximately 8.308 million people live in the Greater London area, which makes it hard to believe that quiet moments like this are possible...







Get to know one of the world's most exciting and diverse capital cities at first hand. Soon you'll know that we call the underground "the tube", you'll know what an A-Z is, but you won't always need one to get from A to B.





One thing is for sure, when your friends and family know that you have a job in the UK, they will be booking their holiday and shopping trips to come and see you.

Take friends and family to see the sights and share with them your new favourite places and treat them to the special experience of a full English breakfast!




We also have jobs in cities near Birmingham, more rural areas, coastal Wales, Scotland, the south coast and much more. Just ask us for details and please let us know your location preferences!











Jacaranda is based in London and we have jobs in the capital and other locations throuought the UK and Ireland.


Type of work

Jacaranda helps social care professionals find jobs in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Those we help include:

  • Social workers
  • Social educators
  • Social pedagogues
  • Pedagogues
  • Support workers

Have a look at some of our current jobs.





How we help you get a social work job in the UK or Ireland

Remember, we do not not charge you for helping you find a job.

Register with us!

Send us your CV and you will be registered on our mailing list. We will then send you job updates.

When you apply for a job you like, we make an appointment to talk about it. We will give you extra information on the job, assess your suitability for the job and explain the application process.This is nothing to be nervous about and there is no special need to prepare for it. It takes about 30 minutes.


Applying for a specific job & Feedback on application form

When you see a job you like, follow the instructions on the advert. Usually this involves informing yourself about the social work job and completing a specific application form, or writing a supporting statement. We will give you feedback and you may want to make some changes. We have placed many social workers in the UK and Ireland since we started in 2003, and we know what information employers need to see in your application.


Invitation to interview & preparation

Sometimes we make the decision as to whether or not you are invited to interview and sometimes the employer makes this decision.

Once invited, we will help you prepare for your interview.


Job offer  and recruitment checking

If all goes well, you will be made a job offer. Jacaranda informs you about this and guides you through the next steps. We start talking about the specific salary you will be offered and what needs to be done before your job offer can be confirmed. You will usually work with your future employer directly on this, and we support you in the process.


Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service checks (DBS)

Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service checks (DBS) is, in essence, a more detailed police-check. Everyone who works with vulnerable people needs to have this check done. The requirements are very specific (e.g. you provide your address details for the last 5 years and you have to provide specific documents to prove your identity and address). We will advise you about this when the time comes.

For social work jobs, you can start work only when you are fully registered with the HCPC, when your clear DBS is processed, and satifactory references have been received and signed off. There will be other requirements that are set out in your conditional job offer letter. Processing thiss can take some time, and it helps if you provide everything required of you promptly.


Starting work

A new job in a new country! Congratulations! It is a wonderful feeling, maybe mixed with nerves and apprehensions, but many, many people before you have done it.



First published in 2003, © Jacaranda Recruitment Ltd. 2019. All rights reserved.