A cross-national exploration of the question of competence in care work reveals two things: first, that the term ‘competent’ and its associated ‘competence’ and ‘competency/ies’ have become increasingly used, perhaps over-used; and second, that there are fundamental differences of interpretation of the term, often along cross-national lines. Similarly, there are variations in the extent to which education is required, expected or considered desirable for employment, or continuing employment, in care work. The concept of competence might be considered a mediating factor in assessments of education for care work and the professionalism of care workers, as it implies, or can imply, an ability to meet expected set-out targets for performance. The extent to which competence and the developmental aspects of education coincide is contested. The aim of this chapter is to explore the usage of competent/ce in relation to care work in the six study countries, and these varying interpretations.