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Workforce Development Funding

What is the Workforce Development Fund?

The Workforce Development Fund (WDF) is funding from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) which is distributed by Skills for Care through a network of employer led partnerships. Care Development East is the employer led partnership in Suffolk and distributes the funds to members of the partnership.

The fund allows you to claim money towards the cost of learning programmes such as Diplomas and Apprenticeships (or employer contributions) but can only be claimed once a candidate has completed their full qualification. Funding is only eligible for learning programmes and associated costs completed between 1 January 2019 and 31 March 2020 and a maximum of £2000 can be claimed for each learner.

The capping level for each organisation is £7,500. This means that where there is more than one ASC-WDS registered service they will all be covered by this cap. The allocation of funding will be on a first come, first served basis.

What qualifications can I claim for?

In 2019-20 WDF can be used to claim RQF Qualifications across all levels, QCF L5 Leadership and Management and other key sector priorities including:

  • £3 million of targeted funding to support new managers, existing managers, deputies and aspiring managers

    Investing in managers represents an investment in their services, their staff and the quality of care they provide. Enhanced funding is available for completion of leadership and management qualifications and learning programmes. New CPD programmes are in development and will be available in October 2019.

  • Enhanced funding per learner for completion of the adult care worker and lead adult care worker apprenticeship standards

    Employers can claim funding in two stages for learners on the Adult Care Worker and Lead Adult Care Worker apprenticeship standards – upon completion of the diploma and after the end-point assessment has been passed.

Click here for a full list of eligible qualifications

How can I claim WDF?

To be eligible to claim through Care Development East you must be an Adult Social Care employer based in Suffolk or provide care to clients based in Suffolk.

You must then complete the following steps:

Step 1: Join the Care Development East Partnership (Formerly The Suffolk Brokerage)

If you wish to join as a new partner, download and complete a Partnership Membership Form and return to us by email or post. 

Click here for the Partnership Form

There is no cost in becoming a member of our partnership.

A single set of forms completed by a parent company can cover groups of establishments by using the labelled boxes at the end of the form.

For existing partners, a new Partnership Membership Form is not required.

Step 2: Complete your Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS)

This is the new name for the NMDS-SC.

Employers must have updated at least 90% of their ASC-WDS records since 1st April 2019. ASC-WDS is the leading source of robust workforce intelligence for adult social care.

The full requirements to be eligible can be downloaded from the link below.

ASC Workforce Data Set requirements

If you are have any questions or need further advice then call the Support Service on 0845 8730129, email nmds-support@skillsforcare.org.uk or visit their website https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/NMDS-SC-intelligence/NMDS-SC/Discover-NMDS-SC.aspx and their dedicated team will be happy to guide you.

Step 3:  Claim

Once your membership has been confirmed, and your ASC-WDS is up to date, you will be able to claim. To do this, you will need to send the following documentation to Care Development East. These can be posted or emailed to us at wdf@caredevelopmenteast.co.uk

Employer Claim Form

This form must be completed by all employers submitting a claim.

Click here to download the form.


A copy of the learner’s certificate showing the complete qualification. This must be dated between 1 January 2019 and March 31 2020.

Once you have sent your employer claim form and evidence to Care Development East your claim will be processed and sent to Skills for Care. Any queries with the claim will be addressed with you before being forwarded.

We will acknowledge your claim on receipt but cannot specify how long it will take until you receive your funding.

Any Questions?

If you have any questions about eligible qualifications or the claiming process please call the Care Development East office and chat to a member of the team. We are very happy to talk you through the process.

We have also created a handy WDF claiming process flowchart to help you navigate your way through the requirements for claiming.

WDF Flowchart