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28 Nov 2022

SSSC registration

Next steps for Register for the future

Changes to our Register as part of our Future Proofing Programme will go ahead following approval from the SSSC Council. We will also change some aspects of registration relating to qualifications.

We decided on what changes to make following the Register for the future consultation earlier this year and in-depth engagement with key stakeholders over the summer.

We are working on detailed plans for implementing the changes over the next 18 months and will involve people working in social work, social care and children and young people services and employers throughout the changes.

What is changing

  • The number of Register parts will reduce from 23 to four: social workers, social work students, social care workforce and children and young people workforce. We’ll include the type of service and level of job role.
  • Staff will have to apply for registration within three months of starting a new role and be registered within six months.
  • We’ll include more information on the public Register, including specialist qualifications for social workers and fitness to practise information currently available on a different part of our website.
  • Registration will be ongoing with an annual declaration and fee, instead of registrants having to renew registration every three or five years.
  • We’ll accept our main benchmark qualifications for additional Register parts with the same SCQF level requirements, to allow more flexibility.
  • The time given to achieve a required qualification is reducing from five years to three years, with the exception of new registrants with no recognised qualification joining as a supervisor, manager or residential childcare worker.
  • We’ll design of a new model of continuous professional learning (CPL) in consultation with the sector, which will include mandatory skills and knowledge.
  • We’ll develop a return to practice standard for social workers based on how long they’ve been away from practice.
  • We’ll include return to practice requirements for other groups of registrants in the revised CPL model.
  • There will be a new practitioner level on the Register for housing support/care at home with the qualification requirement being Social Service and Healthcare at SCQF level 7.


Maree Allison, SSSC Acting Chief Executive, welcomed the Council’s decision saying: ‘This is a key milestone in our Future Proofing Programme, which means we’re on track to make changes and improvements, so registration is straightforward and easy to understand.

‘It will also help people understand the benefits and value of being registered with the SSSC and the standards, skills and qualifications needed to deliver high quality care every day.

‘Thank you to everyone who took time to get involved in the consultation and the events. We value everyone’s contribution to the programme so far and look forward to continuing to work with you on next steps.’

What happens next?

We’ll announce details and timescales for making the changes to the Register over the coming months through our newsletters and website.

We’re continuing to work on the Codes of Practice review and plan to consult on the updated Codes next spring.

We are due to complete the changes to our Register, qualifications and the Codes of Practice in 2024.

Contact information

Lorraine Wakefield
Communications Manager
Scottish Social Services Council