Drafting a domiciliary care agency business plan

Domiciliary care, or home care agencies, are proliferating in the UK. These agencies are regulated and monitored by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Before starting to draft your domiciliary care agency business plan, it is very important that you read what the minimum standards are for such agencies. Note that the CQC can inspect agencies and also enforce standards.

As the owner of a domiciliary care agency, you are responsible for ensuring that the staff you employ

If a member of staff does not have the CIS training must be completed within 12 weeks of starting employment in a domiciliary care agency.

Your domiciliary care agency business plan should be comprehensive, and you will need to register your agency with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in England. In Scotland the body you need to register with is the Care Inspectorate, while in Wales the regulating body is the Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW). You will also need to state who your Registered Manager will be.

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Before you start attempting to write your domiciliary care agency business plan you will have to do some research into the qualifications required to run a care agency. If you are to be the Registered Manager of your care agency, you will need the QCF Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care. As there are several pathways to choose from, you will have to decide which best suits your needs as a care professional. If you don’t have the qualification you should hire a manager who does. Courses can be delivered online or in local educational establishments and should be accredited by ATHE (Awards for Training and Higher Education), an Ofqual-regulated awarding body.

To be accepted onto these level 5 courses you need to have at least 5 GCSEs at grade C. The higher your qualifications, the more chance you have of being accepted onto a course.

If you, as owner of the agency, have the appropriate qualifications, you could take on the role of Registered Manager.

All staff should be suitably qualified for their roles.

Note that the manager and responsible individual can be the same person.

Writing a domiciliary care agency business plan is time-consuming and needs much careful thought before you start writing it. The plan is basically a statement of intent. You need to explain how you mean to run your agency and outline what services you intend to provide.

You will need to detail precisely how your agency will be managed and you will need to do a SWOT analysis so that you can assure a lender, or potential investors that your plan is viable and can make them money in the short and long term. Writing a domiciliary care agency business plan shows that you have done your homework and are confident of making a success of the business.

Your SWOT analysis will outline your strengths and weaknesses as well as opportunities that you can take advantage of. Apart from that you will need to assess threats to the business, particularly from other care agencies. Analyse the possible threats to the business and offer suggestions as to how these may be overcome.

You will need to do some thorough research into the need for more care agencies in your area. Give the ageing population of the UK and its growth, thanks to those prolific Baby Boomers of the period between 1946 and 1964, the ageing population is continually growing. Use local statistics to show that the trend is continuing. These figures will be useful for your market analysis.

The ageing population is the fastest growing of all groups in the UK and the US. In the UK the number of people aged 65 plus is expected to grow by 20.4% between the years 2014 and 2024. That means that given the current state of the National Health Service and the threats to it, private home care agencies should be able to turn a considerable profit. However, you will need a comprehensive domiciliary care agency business plan if you are to succeed.

In your domiciliary care agency business plan, you will need to specify the service you could offer. These may include: -

  • home medication management
  • personal assistance services
  • availability of nursing aides
  • mental health counsellors, and
  • highly-trained medical staff

When you have worked out what services you will offer, you should then think about how to start your business. There are several things that you need to do before you open for business. Think carefully about them before you make your domiciliary care agency business plan.

  • To begin with you will need to apply for a Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check. This should be your very first step. The checks should be carried out for all employees as well as for yourself.
  • You need to supply references that can be verified, and these should include one from your very last employer and one from your GP.
  • Make sure that you fill in the correct registration form. There are forms for individuals to fill in, and others for an organisation, and others if you are setting up your business with a partner.
  • Another form that must be submitted is the Registered Manager application.
  • You will also need to have a detailed statement of purpose. This has to detail your aims and objectives and give your contact details. Also, be certain to include the services you intend to supply.
  • When you have received your green copy of the all the DBSs, and done everything specified above, then, and only then, is your application ready to submit. Submit it by email preferably, although it is also acceptable to send it by post.
  • Decide whether you will register your business as a limited company, a sole trader or a partnership.

If you are to register your home care business, apart from a domiciliary care agency business plan, you will need the following to comply with the rules and regulations for a care agency in the UK. You submit the documents to the CQC, or the Care Inspectorate in Scotland or the CSSIW if your business is to be based in Wales.

  • You need a statement of purpose to accompany your application to set up a domiciliary care agency business.
  • You need to submit a governance document.
  • A management policy and procedures document is required.
  • You will also need employment contracts for all your care workers.
  • Another necessity is a detailed job description for each of the the people you intend to employ.
  • A further necessity is an application form for prospective employees.
  • A customer/client information guide is also required.
  • A document which details your grievance policy and the procedures in place for dealing with them.
  • A Policy and Procedure document.
  • Confidentiality is very important and must be addressed in a policy document.
  • A policy for safeguarding your clients detailing the procedures you will employ to safeguard your clients/customers.
  • A Health and Safety policy document showing that your business is committed to adhering to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
  • A well-detailed policy that explains the procedures for bathing and showering clearly.
  • A Bullying and Harassment policy.

You need a statement of purpose which explains your aims and objectives as well as detailing the services you wish to provide, the needs that will be met, the legal standing of your business, where your services will be provided and finally, don’t omit your contact details.

Th governance document which will explain how you intend to assess, monitor and improve the services you offer. Assurance and auditing systems must be described and in place when your business begins operating. You will need to collect data from your clients in order to keep records so that you can demonstrate that you act on feedback and are continually attempting to improve your services.

Your management policy document needs to show that you have procedures in place that ensure you can assess and monitor quality as regards the services you offer. It will need to highlight the risks to clients as regards their health and safety as well as their welfare.

Each care agency will need to have employment contracts for their employees, s a lawyer will be needed to ensure the contract document is legal. If you are employing a variety of staff to do different jobs, then you will need several job descriptions covering each job that will be done.

The customer/client information documents should detail your general philosophy and give details of such things as visits to clients and cancellation procedures.

Your grievance policy should be clear and unambiguous, outlining what procedure are in place for reporting grievances.

In the confidentiality document you need to assure clients that at all times confidentiality is paramount. Then if there is a breach in confidentiality they have the option for legal redress.

At all times your customers are entitled to be safeguarded, especially if they are vulnerable.

Other points mentioned above are self-explanatory.

If you need more help as regards drawing up a domiciliary care agency business plan, don’t hesitate to contact us. We understand that such a document is very important and not everyone, for one reason or another, is comfortable with their writing skills when it comes to drafting legal, or semi-legal documents. Our services are completely confidential, so we will never divulge the contents of your documents or the fact that we helped you with your business plan.

We can read through any drafts of your plan and proofread and edit them if that’s what you want, or we can write the whole business plan for you.

Why not contact us now to find out more about our comprehensive writing services?

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