Social Worker Recruitment Trends in 2023

January 2023 by Tradewind Australia

Social Worker Recruitment Trends In 2023 Featured Prf1

With 2022 in the rear view mirror, many employers seek to understand what recruitment trends 2023 will unearth. It seems no sector is immune to the mounting pressures of our current skilled labour shortage. Unfortunately, the same applies to the social work sector. 

It’s important to realise that with the right planning, however, you can be on top of the trends popular for 2023.

Respect the Candidate During the Process

Social work professionals are astute, articulate and curious problem-solvers. It would be a mistake to assume they won’t use these skills throughout the hiring process. 

Your recruitment campaign – beginning with the job description – must be conceived with the greatest attention to detail. Remember, your opportunity is not the only job prospect available to job seekers. 

To ensure that you put your best foot forward, we suggest you:

  • Communicate efficiently

  • Respect your candidate’s time

  • Are transparent about your hiring process

  • Introduce your interviewer by email ahead of time

  • Enter the interview prepared

Meet the Growing Need

Post-pandemic, there has been an exponential increase in the demand for social work. Our ageing population is another significant contributing factor, whilst policy demands are also adding to the mounting workload. Family violence, disability, and mental health policies are among them. According to Job Skills Australia, future job opportunities within the social work field will grow by 23.2% by 2026.

Building a team to meet the needs of your local area is one thing. Ensuring they have the resources required to carry out their work is another. Fail to prove that you can support your team as they navigate the challenges of this ever-evolving field, and you will fail to appeal to a social work prospect. 

Propositions are Trending

One of the hiring trends 2023 brings to the forefront is the employer offering.

By its very nature, social work is about giving. To engage these professionals in the first instance, you must lead with a well-defined set of propositions that demonstrate what you will bring to the relationship.

  • A Growth Proposition

Career advancement and pathways for continued learning are top of mind for the modern jobseeker. Those looking for a Social Worker job are not excluded from this list. 

In this sector, experience is invaluable. Your organisation must do everything it can to retain those who possess it. Providing career and educational pathways is the best way to do this. Not only does this empower your team, but it motivates your people and builds loyalty.

  • A Wellness Proposition

Social work is incredibly rewarding. Equally, it can be emotionally draining. It is not uncommon for social work professionals to experience periods of burnout during their careers. Whilst the job's demands have always been challenging, like most things, the pandemic has exacerbated both client needs and the working experience.

The best way to safeguard your team from burnout is to establish support policies and team well-being protocols. Candidates will be on the lookout for those organisations that can demonstrate their wellness proposition is not just words on a page but is engrained in the company's culture.

  • A Values-Based Proposition

Australia is in the midst of a skilled labour shortage, and this is being felt all too heavily in the social services sector. Social work is a profession with a well of values that runs deep. So, to capture the attention of the sector's most sought-after talent, you must articulate your values and back up your claims with examples of them in action. 


Social work recruitment – not unlike other sectors – will continue to face many challenges as we enter the new year. But, with your finger on the pulse and this handy article bookmarked you’ll be one step ahead of the rest. 

But – and this is important – we really don’t expect you to go it alone. Our social work consultants are experienced professionals who love doing their best for the sector and the incredibly important people that work within it.

When you partner with Tradewind Australia, you partner with a team of people who will invest in a lasting working relationship with you and your organisation. 

Let us worry about staying abreast of 2023’s recruitment trends and finding your people so you can focus on delivering your much-needed services.Contact our team today. Let’s have a chat about how we can work together.