Social Worker

Posted 27th Mar, 2024
£40,005 – £48,063
Working arrangements
Contract type
Closing date
21st Apr, 2024
About the role

Job overview

Are you interested in professional development opportunities and the ability to practice to the best of your ability within a supportive, innovative Outstanding Local Authority? If so, Islington is looking to recruit enthusiastic and talented social workers to our Children in Need Service and our Disabled Children’s Team. Please note, this opportunity is not for newly qualified Social Workers, which is recruited to separately as part of our ASYE academy.

Main duties of the job

As a Children and Family Social Worker you will bring experience of assessing risk and making plans to safeguard and care for children. Additionally, you will be responsible for progressing plans for sustainable change with families, stepping up to care proceedings or stepping down to targeted services where necessary, ensuring plans for all children are in place that provide for their safety, stability and permanency.

You will be accustomed to employing social work principles such as dignity, respect, empathy, and strength based collaborative approaches to service delivery.

You will understand the impact of trauma on children and their families, and the implications of this for their ongoing needs.

Motivational interviewing (MI) skills are the cornerstone of social work practice in the Children Services in Islington. In order to help us select the best candidates, Islington have developed a two stage interview process with the first stage being an opportunity to test out applicants MI compatibility. Candidates are not required to have advanced MI skills, rather we are seeking to identify those who have the capacity to learn and develop these skills with the advanced training and feedback. Further details will be provided to all candidates who are shortlisted and offered an interview.

The benefits of this post include:

Retention bonus, Zone 1-2 Travel Card, protected case load, specially designed core training package, professional development opportunities, regular reflective supervision, practice evaluation, Local Government Pension Scheme and generous holidays, flexible working arrangements, an experienced management team, and a great working location in Islington.

Closing date: Sunday 21st April 2024 at 23:59
Proposed Motivational Interview date: Wednesday 1st of May 2024 
Technical Interview: Wednesday 1st of May 2024

Working for your organisation

Islington was rated as Outstanding by Ofsted in March 2020. Ofsted has reported “Children in Islington benefit from services that have gone from strength to strength... Senior leaders and members of the council demonstrate an unwavering commitment to improving and enriching the lives of children and their families. This is evidenced by the significant and sustained investment in children’s services, and by the wide range of highly successful initiatives that are having a positive impact on children and their families, whatever their level of need. Highly skilled and experienced staff listen carefully to children to understand their needs and ensure that plans are effective”.  

What is Motivational Practice?

Motivational Practice is Islington’s Practice Model. There are core elements that underpin the practice framework that provide a set of skills around how to communicate in a helpful way with families that leads to a plan for change. Empathy underpins any form of effective work with people and motivational practice aims to build effective working relationships with families being able to identify their own reasons for change. 

What Islington Will Offer You:

  • Protected caseloads and reduced bureaucracy will allow more intensive work with families, more frequent visits and the opportunity to build transformative relationships and undertake more direct work.
  • A specially designed core training package to deliver goal based interventions, use evidenced based tools, develop reflective and thoughtful risk assessment, and to measure progress.
  • Availability of an intensive multi-disciplinary service to enhance social work intervention where the concerns for the child are high risk.
  • Social workers will receive regular reflective supervision and practice development opportunities to enhance their own professional effectiveness.

For further information or for an informal conversation about the post, please contact:

Children in Need: Maria Raphael,

Children with Disability: Lauren Carre, Lauren

About you
  • Social Work qualification. 
  • Must be actively registered with Social Work England. 
  • Must maintain SWE registration. 
  • Good understanding of relevant legislation, regulation, safeguarding practices and research on what works to improve outcomes for children and families
  • Demonstrate skills aligned with the Motivational Practice framework (role play interview).
  • Relationship and effective direct work: Demonstrate evidence of building purposeful relationships balancing empathy and authority. You will show experience of direct work, working with the impact of trauma and ensuring safeguarding is always prioritised.
  • Communication (oral and written: Demonstrate evidence of communicating and listening with children and families/carers considering diversity and the need to tailor communication style to engage and motivate people to participate in support services. Produce written case notes and reports that are well argued, focused with sound analysis and rational for actions.
  • Child Development: Demonstrate ability to engage children in their environment, understand the world in which they live and the quality of their key relationships; to recognise signs that the child may not be meeting developmental milestones, has been harmed or is at risk of harm; to utilise research and evidenced-based approaches to actively inform casework. Consider the impact of SEND on children, young people and their families. 
  • Adult mental ill health, substance misuse, domestic abuse, physical ill health and disability: Demonstrate the ability to act upon (e.g., consultation and referral to other services) adult mental ill health, substance misuse, domestic abuse, physical ill health and disability to mitigate risk to children and improve individual and family functioning.
  • Abuse & neglect in children: Demonstrate the ability to assess the impact of cumulative trauma and be clear about concerns namely: sexual, physical, emotional abuse, neglect, CSE, gangs and radicalization as well as the impart of parental issues on children. 
  • Assessments: Demonstrate ability to collaboratively carry out multi-agency, in-depth and ongoing assessments of social need and risk to children with particular emphasis on capacity for change, leading to effective planning to address the impart of trauma, where the voice of the child or young person is heard, considered and clearly recorded.
  • Analysis, decision making, planning and review: Evidence of being able to identify thresholds within the continuum of risks and needs. Ability to make clear recommendations about how to enable change to address risk and need based on evidence and professional judgement.
    Collaborate with the child, family or carers to set out clear goals about what needs to change and when. Evidence of drawing the relevant people into the plan, including family’s own support network, ensuring plans are purposeful and support children to reach their potential.
  • Role of supervision: Demonstrated ability to make effective use of reflective and discussion opportunities to enhance your professional practice. Awareness of your own emotional response to the work and the ability to identify strategies to ensure a high quality of service.
  • Commitment to challenging inequality: Explain how your values and behaviors will support you in working in alignment LBI’s commitment to challenge inequality and fairer for all policies. 
About Islington

Islington is one of the most vibrant areas of London, with a diverse population, a unique cultural identity and a wealth of open spaces, theatres, museums, cinemas, and galleries.

Our Children’s Social Care services have been rated by OFSTED as Outstanding and praises an “unwavering commitment to improving and enriching the lives of children and their families”

A snapshot of what we offer our social workers:

  • Up to 28 days annual leave per year (increasing to 33 days after five years of local government service)

  • In addition to annual leave, the council grants 3 privilege days which must be taken during the Christmas and New Year period as the council stipulates.

  • 35-hour working week

  • A range of flexible working arrangements

  • Zone 1-2 Travel card for our Children’s Social Workers

  • Retention bonus’ for our Children’s Social Workers

  • Specially designed core training package

  • Excellent pension scheme with a new Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution (Shared Cost AVC) employee benefit scheme.

  • Competitive pay – and a commitment to paying all staff and apprentices the London Living Wage

  • Lead authority for Step Up to Social Work

  • Social Work training through Social Work Apprenticeship Degree

  • Highly valued Assessed and Supported Year in Education through Islington ASYE Academy.

  • Access to Management and Coaching Apprenticeships

  • Pathways Program for first time and experienced managers

  • Opportunities to train as a Practice Educator

For more information and a discussion about working for London Borough of Islington, contact our Principal Social Worker Wynand McDonald, Principal Child and Family Social Worker at