See below for answers to those questions people ask us the most. If you have a question we haven't answered get in touch here.

  • Who is Ocean Healthcare?

    Ocean Healthcare are a bunch of super friendly people who are committed to doing things right in the health and social care sector in the Southwest of the UK. There's about 50 of us working out of offices in Paignton, Exeter, Newton Abbot, Barnstaple, Plymouth and Taunton.

    We are also about 400 great healthcare workers doing marvellous things in our Complex Care service or in our Agency Staffing Support business. We have been going since October 2013 and have become a top-rated Agency and one of the most well respected care providers in the areas in which we operate.

  • What is Complex Care?

    Complex Care is a care service for individuals with complex needs. The care we provide is delivered mainly in the homes of our service users who may have learning disabilities and/or complex health challenges. Our shifts are rarely shorter than 4 hours and can be up to 12 hours. The people we care for can be new born infants through to very elderly. Our care service is led by nurses who oversee quality, safety and training of our care teams. Our carers are highly trained. Our most experienced and highly skilled carers are true healthcare professionals who often have skill competence greater than nurses or other healthcare professionals. Complex Care is a career choice for people who love care, want to develop themselves and make a big difference to the people they care for.

  • What is Agency?

    Agency is the commonly used term for part of our business which is also called Nursing Agency or Staffing Support Agency. This is the oldest part of our business. Our customers are care establishments throughout the Southwest (mainly within commutable distance from one of our offices). We provide them with staffing support in the form of Healthcare Assistants, Support Workers and Nurses. They will contact us with one or more shifts that they need to be filled and we try to fill those shifts with high calibre, reliable people who have the right skills the client is looking for.

    For Healthcare workers we provide flexible work opportunities to work in a variety of care settings. Most people who work in our Agency do so because they want to enjoy the benefits of flexible working, great rates of pay and not having to be in the same place all the time. Agency workers get to choose to work a lot or a little and the dates/times that suit them.

  • Are Ocean Healthcare any good?

    Good question! We think so!

    We do our best to make sure that everyone who works with Ocean Healthcare is Happier as a result. Happiness is a major thing for us at Ocean Healthcare. We believe healthy things grow naturally and that relationships are at the heart of everything we do. Of course, we're just ordinary people so occasionally we mess up. However, we are a team of highly committed and friendly people who are trying hard to put a bit of goodness back into our part of the world.

    To understand whether we're any good though you should probably ask people other than us. Check out our reviews on Google and Facebook and wherever good people leave reviews. Last time we checked they were looking pretty good!

    You can see stories from Ocean Healthcare staff already working with us here.

  • Why should I choose to work with Ocean Healthcare?

    Now that is an excellent question!

    We'd be really pleased to explore whether Ocean Healthcare is the right place for you or not. We truly believe that healthy things grow naturally and we want to help everyone grow as a person. For many, Ocean Healthcare is exactly the right place for that and for others we might recommend a different path. Some of the things we think are highlights include:

    • We are a cool bunch of friendly people who know what we're doing.

    • You'll earn among the best rates of pay available in the care sector.

    • Our training team are superb! You'll have lots of opportunities to develop if you want to.

    • Your Happiness and that of everyone who works with us is a big priority.

  • What is our philosophy?

    Our philosophy is Live Happy Care Well.

    We believe that great care is only consistently delivered by people who are in a good place themselves and cared for by the people they work with and the organisation they work for. Great care is important because the vulnerable people at the receiving end of that care deserve it. So we owe it to them to make sure we're in a good place as people ourselves. Let's focus on our Happiness and that of the people around us. Let's do that together. It's kind of really important :)

  • Do I need care experience to apply?

    To work in our Agency business (on a shift-by-shift basis in our clients' care establishments) you will need a minimum of 6 months paid UK care experience. This can be in any kind of care establishment (e.g. care home or hospital). To work in our Complex Care business (permanent employment working with service users in their own homes) we are also mainly looking for people with experience. However, we do take on a limited number of people with no experience if they express the right attitude and willingness to learn. We are also very keen to hear from people with advanced care skills who have sufficient experience already to work with people with complex needs.

  • What is the difference between Complex Care and Agency?

    While both require superb carers, there's a lot of difference between working in Agency and working in Complex Care....although some do both! The type of care, how and where it is delivered and the key reasons for choosing either option are quite different. If you are an experienced carer, you may be able to choose either option. Our expert recruiters can help you determine which path is best for you. Get in touch if you'd like to talk things through.

    Complex Care is a nurse-led CQC-registered care service for people of all ages, mainly in their homes. Shifts can be anything between 4-12 hours. You would normally work consistently with one or more of our service users on a fixed rota. Although you would be part of a care team, you would often be working on your own or with one other person. You would be supported by a Care Team Manager and our Nurse Team. Complex Care has opportunities for Carers and Support Workers working with different types of service user.

    Our Agency (also known as Nursing Agency) suits experienced healthcare workers ( HCAs, Support Workers and Nurses) who want to be able to work flexibly. Working to a fixed rota can be constraining and often doesn't work with family and social life very well. Also, if you want to increase or decrease the amount you work/earn, it is very easy to do that on an instant basis with Agency which permanent jobs (including our own Complex Care service) do not allow. As an Agency worker, you will be booked to work for our clients who are establishment-based care providers. You will be working in their establishment under their direction and supervision. Care homes, supported living locations, hospices and private hospitals are all establishments you may be booked to work at. Most members of our Agency end up with a small portfolio of client locations that they work in regularly and a wider group they work in less often. As well as amazing flexibility, another fab benefit of Agency is that you can enjoy working in a variety of locations. If you get bored or want a change you can simply do that by talking with our team. You won't get stuck in a particular location if you don't want to. Along with great pay, you really can construct your ideal lifestyle working in Agency.

  • Do I need to be a car driver?

    The short answer is usually yes. Having the flexibility to get to different locations will certainly help us give you the amount and type of work that you want. There are situations in both Agency and Complex Care where you may be located on a bus route or within walking distance of locations you need to get to. If you do not have access to transport and still want to explore working with Ocean Healthcare, the best thing is to get in touch with one of our recruiters who will be able to tell you if it would work out for you. You can do so by calling 0808 275 9951 or emailing applications@oceanhealthcare.co.uk

  • Do Ocean Healthcare pay mileage?

    Yes. You will be able to claim at a rate per mile for locations we send you to. Normally you have to cover the first few miles yourself and Ocean Healthcare will pay you for every mile after that. Mileage rates can change, but we tend to be pretty generous. Mileage is claimed with your weekly timesheet.

  • What documents will I need to apply?

    If you complete the Register Your Interest form we will be in touch with everything you need to apply to work with Ocean Healthcare. The button for this form can be found at the top of this web page. By law we are required to check your Right to Work in the UK and confirm your identity. These documents include: Passport, Resident Permit, Full Birth Certificate (also need your National Insurance number), Biometric Immigration Document, Certificate of Registration or Naturalisation. We will also need a valid DBS on the Update Service OR a new DBS will be needed as part of your application.

  • What training is involved in Complex Care?

    At Ocean, we believe that excellent training is at the heart of excellent care. For this reason, we offer a comprehensive training programme to support your development.

    When you first join us, you will have a two-week training plan covering core skills such as medication administration, as well as the advanced skills you need for working with our complex service users. Our training is interactive and we consider your individual learning experiences and needs. We are very happy to help you develop new skills as well as to update skills you already have.

    After completing your classroom training, you will start a period of ‘shadowing’ where you will work with an experienced member of staff to learn skills and routines. When you are feeling comfortable, we will assess your competency in preparation for working independently.

    Our commitment to providing excellent training means you will also be offered continuing opportunities for training and development throughout the time you work with us.

  • Can I fit work around school hours?

    It is not possible to work in our Agency business around school hours unless you're prepared and able to work nights. Although the work is highly flexible, most of our clients require shifts that are either earlies, lates, long days or nights. Apart from nights, these would conflict with most school hours. In our Complex Care business there may be some options in certain locations that work around school hours, but not many. The only difference again is nights which we will have more options for. We're happy to explore whether the hours you have available to work fit with what we have available. Just get in touch.

  • How flexible do I need to be?

    We want to provide you with as much flexibility as possible in both our Agency and Complex Care business. The more flexible you are in terms of where and when you are prepared to work and the type of work you are prepared to do will enable us to give you more of what you are looking for. In Complex Care you will mainly know your shifts well in advance and be working with the same service users in the same locations. It's great if you are willing to respond at short notice and can be flexible to support other packages of care. In Agency the more flexible you are in terms of where and when you can work, the more likely we will be able to give you the amount and type of work you want in the locations you prefer. Of course everyone's circumstances are different. To get a better idea of how working with Ocean Healthcare might pan out for you, we recommend having a chat with one of our expert Recruiters. They will absolutely help you to make the right choice for you.

  • What happens if I don't like where you send me?

    If you're unhappy with any element of working with Ocean Healthcare just let us know. It is our aim that you are happy in your work. Some things are easy to fix and others are more challenging. However, it's ok to ask and you will not encounter anyone being unfriendly in response. Working with our Agency it is easy to simply state that you did not like it somewhere and we will not send you back there again. The only thing to consider is that the more places you are not willing to go to, the more restrictions you put on where you can go to. Obvious right?! In Complex Care the options to move between packages is less easy. It is important that you and the service user you are working with are comfortable. If that is not the case, please simply call us and discuss your concerns (probably with your Care Team Manager) and we will work with you to achieve the best outcome.

  • What are the pay rates?

    Ocean Healthcare are known for paying well. You will receive among the best pay rates in the sector when you work with us. The pay rates can vary based on a number of things. You will find details of some of the pay rates within the specific opportunities we have available here on this website. Visit the 'Opportunities' page for specific information. We will also be happy to share pay rates if you contact us.

  • Are my hours guaranteed?

    If guaranteed hours are important to you then you should discuss this along with everything else that is important to you with our recruiters. Every situation is different and our amazing Recruiters will be able to tell you what is realistic. In Agency typically hours are not guaranteed, but in some circumstances we might be able to do so. If you want to work in Agency but need proof of guaranteed hours to support a mortgage for instance, give us a call. We'll talk through what's possible. In Complex Care, the hours are usually guaranteed if you have a permanent contract with us. There are some opportunities to work on the bank in Complex Care which is more flexible, but does not come with guaranteed hours.

  • How and when do I get paid?

    We have the best Accounts Teams in the world! There are very few mistakes in our team and you'll find them easy to contact and resolve things if something does go wrong. All frontline care workers in both Agency and Complex Care will receive payments into their accounts weekly by the Friday of the following week. Any shifts completed during a full Monday-Sunday week are paid the next Friday. The only exceptions are connected to Bank Holidays (particularly Christmas) when we will notify you of changes to payment dates.

  • What happens during the recruitment process?

    From the moment you start the recruitment process you will feel like you're dealing with friendly, honest and helpful people. Our aim is that everyone is Happier with Ocean Healthcare. Normally we will speak to you initially on the phone to make sure that an interview will be a good investment of time for you and for us. During the interview we will ask you a number of questions to make sure we understand what you're looking for and that Ocean Healthcare is going to be a good fit for you and vice versa. We will also ask you some questions to ensure your experience is a match for what we need. You should also ask questions to make sure you're comfortable with how everything will work. Following the interview there will probably be some online and classroom training for you to do. You will then be invited to attend Registration where you will be given a contract to sign and receive an induction on how everything works. The next stage would be to arrange an interview in one of our branches. For further details on our recruitment process and to see one of our team explain the process visit our web page here.

  • How long does recruitment take?

    Excellent question! …but it depends. In Agency, the process typically takes 7-10 days from the time we speak to you initially on the phone. It will take longer if you are unable to do your side of things (mainly training) quickly enough. Normally, you will need to allocate about 4 hours for online training (which you can do from home). You can literally be working for us immediately after you have registered if you are available to do so. In Complex Care, we can get you through the process in a couple of weeks. However, it depends on a number of factors and this is something you can discuss with one of our Recruiters. We will agree with you when your contract will start and you will be paid from that point. There are so many different possibilities for how this could work that it's difficult to say what you should expect. Typically, someone who applies to work in Complex Care (who is available immediately) will be signed up and working within 2-4 weeks. Circumstances vary a lot however, so please discuss this with one of our Recruiters.

  • What should I bring to the interview?

    When you have been invited to attend an interview in one of our offices you will be sent an email with details of everything you need to know, including what to bring for your interview. This will include 2 forms of 'Proof of Address' (EG Bank Statement or Utility Bill), your ID (Driving Licence, Passport, Birth Certificate) and any other Right to Work information that might be required. It would also be helpful if you brought any valid (less than 12 months old) training certificates you have and any qualifications (e.g. NVQ/QCF) you have achieved.

  • How do I apply?

    The best way to start the recruitment process with Ocean Healthcare is to complete a Register Your Interest form on this website. Here's a link to that form. After completing the form we will very quickly be in touch with you (next working day) to schedule an initial telephone interview. You can schedule that initial telephone interview yourself here if you'd like to. There are lots of other ways you can apply to work with us too:

    Please let us know where you are located, what kind of experience you have and what you're looking for when you contact us. Thanks!

  • How far do I have to travel?

    In our Agency we mostly request that you are willing to travel up to15 miles from where you live. The further you're willing to travel the more options you open up and vice versa. There are limited options in Agency for people who do not have access to transport. However, there are quite a few people who work with us successfully without their own transport. In Complex Care it can vary significantly. You may be fulling engaged in a package of care within walking distance of your home. You may also be involved in one or more packages of care that require extensive travel. This will not be imposed on you however and there will be no pressure for you to travel further than you are comfortable with. This will all be agreed with you at interview. To be clear on how travel would apply in your situation it would be best for you to discuss what you're after and what you're happy to do with one of our helpful Recruiters. They will be able to explain what is realistic for you to expect.

  • What uniform is provided?

    In most instances you will need to wear a uniform. In Agency you will need to wear a tunic (unless working as a Support Worker) and in Complex Care you will be supplied with a polo shirt. What to wear and expectations will be explained in latter parts of the recruitment process. However, if you have any questions before then please feel free to ask.

  • What do you mean by flexible hours?

    AGENCY: One of the main reasons people choose to work in Agency is because they want the flexibility to choose when and how much they work. You do not have to work a fixed rota. You can choose which days you work on a weekly basis. You can choose to work a routine that suits you or you can choose different days and amounts each week. You really get to choose when and how much you work. This is an amazing benefit and enables you to build your perfect lifestyle. You will need to provide your availability via the scheduling app we will give you once you have joined us. It is important that you update this availability if it changes. We will then book your work based on the availability you have provided. This could be full time, part time, nights, days, weekends or just top-up hours to give you extra income around your existing work commitments. In Agency, shift patterns are typically 0800-1400, 1400-2000, 0800-2000 or 2000-0800 with many variations close to this general pattern.

    COMPLEX CARE: the care we provide in Complex Care can include shifts which vary between 4 hours and 12 hours. Other than that it can vary considerably. You will not enjoy the same flexibility to change your shifts on a weekly basis as happens in Agency. However, there are lots of different start and finish times and there is likely to be something that works for you although it will be fixed once you have committed to it. In all instances, circumstances vary and we recommend you discuss what you're looking for with one of our friendly recruiters who can help you decide what is right for you.

  • Do you have opportunities for senior HCAs?

    We are VERY keen to speak to anyone who has sufficient experience to work as a Senior Care Assistant. There are LOTS of opportunities in Complex Care for Seniors and enhanced rates of pay too. Those people working in the most complex care packages receive the highest rates of pay. In Agency, there are sometimes opportunities to work as a Senior HCA, but these are dependent on requests from our clients. While these opportunities do receive higher pay rates, there is unlikely to be sufficient opportunity for you to work entirely as a Senior in Agency. Get in touch to get more details on this.

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