What does a social services aide do?
Social services aide help professionals in providing a variety of programs to individuals that need assistance. They interview clients and family members to gain vital information such as medical, educational, social, and criminal history. They help individuals fill out required paperwork and answer questions. Some social services aides visit clients in their homes or attend meetings and events to provide information on available services. They often refer people to a variety of public and private agencies to obtain necessary assistance.
What kind of training does a social services aide need?
Social services aides must have at least a high school diploma or GED, but most employers prefer applicants with relevant postsecondary education and sufficient work experience. Many social services aides have a degree in social work, human services, or other related field. Prospective social services aides often complete internships or volunteer experiences to gain practical experience in the field. Most employers provide on the job training to enable new social services aides to learn the required policies and procedures. New aides usually start out shadowing experienced workers to learn the necessary skills. Many employers also require social services aides to pass criminal background checks. Social services aides complete additional training as needed throughout their careers to keep their skills current and stay up to date with advancements in the field.
What are the prospects for a career as a social services aide?
Employment of social services aides is expected to grow much faster than average for all professions, increasing 23% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The growing and aging population and increased need for social services will drive job growth.
Job prospects should be excellent, especially for social services aides with relevant postsecondary education and sufficient work experience. Some job openings will arise from the need to replace social services aides that leave the occupation.
How much do social service aides make?
As of April 2010, the average annual salary for social service aides is $30,000; average annual social service aide salaries vary greatly on location, employer, education, experience, and benefits (2).
A career as a social service aide is a great choice for people with a strong desire to help a variety of people. Social services aides must have a thorough understanding of the policies and procedures related to a variety of social services programs. Patience, detail orientation, critical thinking, and good time management skills are essential traits. Social services aides must have effective communication and interpersonal skills and ability to interact with a variety of clients, professionals, and other workers. They must be able to effectively work independently as well as part of a team.