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How to work as a personal assistant

Working as a personal assistant (or PA) is a career that can make a real difference to peoples lives. Personal assistants are skilled individuals who must be adaptable to meet their employers assessed needs. If you would like to work in a caring role and are good with building relationships then take some time to read through the below information.

What is a personal assistant?

A personal assistant (or PA) is somebody that is employed to support with people's day-to-day care and support needs. This could be in areas such as:

  • personal care e.g. washing
  • paying bills
  • leisure activities including hobbies
  • household tasks e.g. gardening, shopping cleaning
  • going to work and/or studying

Personal assistants are employed directly by the person that they are supporting. The hours of work are based on that person's assessed care needs. As a personal assistant your employer can pay you either via a personal budget or self-funded through their own means.

Do I need any qualifications to be a personal assistant?

You do not need any formal qualifications to work as a personal assistant. However it is important that you have the appropriate training or willingness to undertake training to ensure that the person's needs are well met. Common areas that personal assistants are trained in are manual handling, first aid and food hygiene.

People who use personal assistants will require skills and qualities which are matched to their own individual requirements. It may be that they are looking for somebody who is considerate, has a flexible approach or has a discreet approach to personal care needs. PAs can quite often be required to assist people in their leisure time or at social functions too.

What employment checks are required?

To be eligible to work as a PA in Waltham Forest you are required to successfully complete the below checks:

Right to work
This is to confirm your identity and that you are legally able to work in the UK.

These are obtained from your previous or current employers to confirm your work history.

DBS (Disclosure Barring Service)
This is a criminal records check that was formerly called a CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) check.

You will need to show evidence that you have the appropriate qualifications.

How do I advertise on the Personal Assistant Network?

If you are a personal assistant in Waltham Forest, the Personal Assistant Network offers a free and easy way to advertise your services to residents in the borough.

To get started, you will need to complete the PA Profile form which is accessible by registering for an online account.

To do this, simply register on the PA Network and go to the PA Network dashboard area. If you already have an account on the Waltham Forest Directory you can sign in here.

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