New data published by independent job board CV-Library has revealed a drop in average salaries and applications while vacancies rose in February.
Average salaries for new roles fell by 3.1% in the month on the previous year, with applications down by 14.4% year on year and 9.3% month on month.
The data ran counter to overall sector trends which saw job applications rise by 8.2% across the UK.
And the situation is likely to be exacerbated the coronavirus and new immigration rules.
Lee Biggins, founder and CEO of CV-Library (pictured), said: “Even though Brexit is now behind us, it appears that employers across the social care industry are still struggling when it comes to pay and this is having a negative impact on their candidate attraction offers. Unfortunately, with the influx of coronavirus across the nation, businesses may be hit even harder over the coming months, particularly if existing employees need to take time off work.
“We already know that there is a massive shortage of social care professionals and the new points-based immigration system is only going to exacerbate the issue. For now, organisations must continue to push forward as normal and invest in the most cost-effective recruitment methods.”
Despite salaries and applications dropping, the amount of social care jobs on offer increased by 18.8% year-on-year, while the UK experienced a smaller 2.8% growth in jobs.
Biggins added: “While the industry’s employers are advertising more vacancies, there simply isn’t enough talent in the UK to fill these roles right now; especially when pay has dropped. If you aren’t able to offer competitive wages, you’ll need to consider what else you provide that sets you apart from the competition. This could be flexible working, or a larger holiday allowance. If you don’t make your jobs attractive and cater to their needs, candidates will find another employer who will!”