Providing opportunities for career development
When she joined KinCare in December 2017, Margaret was looking for a chance to grow her career in the aged care sector. Since then, she has made the most of the opportunities she has been given to challenge herself, learn new skills and step up into a new role.
Until about nine years ago, the Canberra-based mother and grandmother had a career in the retail and finance industries. She first thought about moving into aged care when working in a branch with a large number of elderly customers.
But it was while caring for her grandmother in the final months of her life that Margaret finally decided it was time for a career change.
“I used to help the community nurses when they came to shower my grandmother,” Margaret explains. “That’s when I realised I wanted to get into care.”
After spending some time working in an aged care facility, Margaret took on a Home Care Worker role at KinCare. She says the benefits of supporting people to stay living in their own homes were clear from day one.
“When you go into residential care , it can be quite regimental. Everything happens at the same time every day and you’re lucky if the carers have 10 minutes to talk to you.
“With a Home Care Worker, you’ve got more independence. I think everyone’s got the right to stay at home as long as possible and live their final years in the comfort of their home”
In December 2019, when KinCare’s Service Delivery Manager in Canberra moved on, Margaret was invited to step up and fill the role until a replacement could be found. She seized the opportunity for a fresh challenge and ended up enjoying the position so much, she applied to do it on a permanent basis. She says she was over the moon when she learned her application had been successful.
Margaret had a lot to learn in her new role but says the support and training she received from the KinCare team made the transition a smooth one.
“I had to get trained on how to use our HR, management and finance systems. That was the biggest challenge for me.
“The KinCare team leaders across the state were great. Everyone was really supportive and great at answering questions. I felt like I could reach out and ask questions whenever I needed to.”
In her new role, Margaret is responsible for supporting a team of Home Care Workers. Her job is to make sure her staff are matched with the right customers, have the training they need to do their jobs well, and get all the support they need if they are unwell.
It’s not an easy job, but she says the feedback she gets from Customers and team members makes it worth all the hard work.
“It feels good when the Home Care Workers say they feel supported and listened to. And when the Customers thank you for what you’re doing to help them.
“I feel like I’m making a difference for our Customers and Home Care Workers. It’s really rewarding to be able to support people to stay living in their own homes in this way.”
Margaret says the culture at KinCare makes it a good place for people looking for a career change, as well as experienced aged care workers looking for career development opportunities.
“KinCare is a great team and it’s a great place to work. We’re like one big family group. We’re always learning and we’re always there for each other. Everyone’s on the same page and understands their role.
“A lot of that comes down to respect. If you respect somebody, and respect yourself, you’ll do your best to make sure you give Customers what they need in a quality way.”
If you’re interested in a career in aged care, visit our Careers section for current vacancies.