The Social Work Task Force was set up by the Department of Health and the DCSF to undertake a comprehensive review of frontline social work practice and to make recommendations for improvement and reform of the whole profession, across adult and children’s services.

In July 2009, the Task Force published its interim report, ‘Facing up to the Task’, which set out proposals for the kind of comprehensive reform needed, including a series of building blocks for constructing a reform programme.

In this final report, the Task Force is setting out 15 recommendations for improving and reforming social work. These recommendations were developed from the building blocks for reform first set out in the interim report.

The recommendations are intended to support a continuing single profession. They are designed to enable social workers to benefit from high quality education and training in responding to both the needs of children and adults, but also to develop specialist skills early in and over the full course of their careers.

Much of this report is inevitably focused on social work in the statutory sector. This is, in many respects, the bedrock of social work in England. However, CAFCASS, the NHS and voluntary and private sector organisations are also important employers of social workers. The Task Force is confident its proposals will help social workers across all the services and sectors in which they currently work.

Visit the Department of Health website for more information on the Social Work Taskforce


  • Introduction
  • Starting Out
  • Time, Resources and Support
  • Professional Development and Career Progression
  • Leadership
  • Public Value and Understanding
  • A Cohesive and Purposeful System
  • Annexes