AN APP created by a local businesswoman aims to do for the care industry what Airbnb and Uber did for theirs.

Roostr will allow nurses and care assistants to make themselves available for work on a self-employed basis.

They can set their availability and the minimum rate they will work for. Then, the software will notify them of available work.

The business is being launched by Rebecca Hannam, who spent 12 years as a care home manager and was in charge of Colten Care’s flagship home Kingfishers in New Milton from its opening in 2009.

“I just found it frustrating dealing with the constant shortfall of staff,” she said.

“There are agencies out there and some of those agencies are great but the mark-up is extortionate and staff are not always highly motivated to come and do the best they can.”

She added: “Airbnb and Uber are excelling in the gig economy. Everyone seems to be wanting more control, more empowerment, they want to have more control of the hours they work and the rates they work at.”

If a Roostr worker ignores an available job, the offered rate of pay may rise, up to a limit the employer has set beforehand.

“We want to empower these people to take control and offer a realistic rate to both the care home manager and employee,” said Ms Hannam.

She said agencies charging homes £14-£15 an hour for a care assistant were often paying that worker only £8.50-£9. Roostr takes a flat rate of £2 an hour out of the payment.

The app allows employers to award star ratings – and anyone who maintains a five-star rating will get an extra £1 an hour, paid for out of Roostr’s commission.

Staff will be offered advice and support on subjects such as registering with HMRC, keeping track of working hours and offsetting expenses against tax.

The app launches in mid-October, with an incentive of 50p an hour during its launch phase for those who refer a friend or colleague. The business is based in Lymington and will initially cover an area from Lymington to Poole and north to Ringwood.

Ms Hannam said she hopes care staff would give the app a try around their other commitments.

“We’re going to have a handful of people who are employed and a handful of employers and it’s going to slowly make progress,” she said.