Rostering and Handover Procedures


The Leadership and Management Standard


Sleeping In and Night Security Procedure


This chapter was slightly amended in April 2013 in regard to physical intervention.


  1. Scheduled Time
  2. Handovers
  3. Shift Leaders
  4. Shift Leader Responsibilities
  5. Shift Leader Tasks - Planning and Recording
  6. Recording

1. Scheduled Time

As a general principle, staff rotas should have time scheduled to ensure that the following occur without compromising the overall care of the children:

  • Handover sessions;
  • Spending time with individual children;
  • Completion of records;
  • Planning and carrying out of care programmes.

Staff supervision.

2. Handovers

The on-coming staff team must receive a thorough handover from the off-going shift leader. Both shift leaders share the responsibility for ensuring that this happens.

Only when the on-coming shift leader is satisfied that all matters have been satisfactorily dealt with or handed over, should they assume responsibility for the shift.

This includes checking the petty cash to ensure that it balances, and that all necessary recording has been completed. In particular, details of all medications issued, appointments and details of any significant events must be notified from one shift leader to another.

3. Shift Leaders

In order to provide care at any time of the day to the young people Accommodated within the home, there need to be clear arrangements in place to identify the member of staff in charge of the home at any given time.

The Shift Leader will normally be the most senior member of staff on duty, but not the Registered Manager, unless they are specifically working 'on shift'.

The Shift Leader must be identified in advance and be clear as to the tasks and expectations associated with the role.

The Shift Leader is responsible, for the period they are in charge, for ensuring that all persons within the home are kept safe and afforded the highest possible level of care.  This will include planning the shift ahead with their colleagues, distributing tasks and ensuring that all planned activities take place.

They must have substantial relevant experience of working within the home, must not be temporary staff and must have successfully completed their induction and probationary periods. They will also have a competent knowledge of the relevant Health and Safety Procedures.

4. Shift Leader Responsibilities

  • To assume overall responsibility for the running of the home, young people, staff and buildings for the duration of their shift in the absence of the Registered Manager or their Assistant Managers;
  • To be responsible for the maintenance of a safe working environment;
  • To identify hazards and implement appropriate action;
  • To ensure that staff are allocated tasks that ensure that the young person's needs are met;
  • To ensure that all recording is completed to an acceptable standard;
  • To ensure that the homes procedures are followed and implemented;
  • To refer any situation or significant event to the Registered Manager or their Line Manager for advice and support;
  • To ensure that all relevant information is given to the on-coming staff team/night care staff.

5. Shift Leader Tasks - Planning and Recording

Once the on-coming shift leader is satisfied, both shift leaders should sign the Handover Sheet. Responsibility then passes to the on-coming shift leader. The on-coming Shift Leader should then plan the shift ahead with their colleagues. This will include:

  • All arrangements for ensuring that the young people's planned activities take place (with reference to the diary);
  • Allocating staff to undertake specific tasks to ensure the smooth running of the home;
  • Consulting with the Registered Manager or designated senior to cover staffing shortages. This will include notifying them of staff absences or any issue of concern including any disciplinary matter;
  • Reporting any Health & Safety, Child Protection, or Violence at Work issues;
  • Reporting children who become absent or go missing as per Missing from Care (Absent/Missing Children) Procedure;
  • Ensuring that all records are maintained;
  • Ensuring that staff have an opportunity to debrief at the end of a shift. This is especially important if staff have been involved in a violent or particularly stressful incident.

6. Recording

The Shift Leader must ensure that appropriate records are kept.

These will include:

  • Daily diary sheets for each young person;
  • Medication records for prescribed and non-prescribed medication including checks to ensure that any medication recorded is in both the child's file and the homes record;
  • Daily log detailing movements of all persons who enter or leave the home, staff on duty, telephone calls, events and an overall appraisal of the atmosphere within the home during their time in charge;
  • Details of any complaint / compliment, including arrangements for notifying the Directorate's Social Care Complaint Manager;
  • Details of any physical interventions, checking that the information is recorded on the child's file and in the home's own record;
  • Details of any sanctions, checking that the information is recorded on the child's file and in the home's own record;
  • Absconder's records;
  • Notification of staff absence;
  • Details of any Child Protection matter;
  • Details of any other significant event and any action taken;
  • Details of any Health¬† and Safety issue.

Completion of Handover/Shift plans.