Caregiver retention is a looming threat in the home assistance and care industry. According to a 2015 study by Home Care Pulse, caregiver turnover was at a staggering 59.7%. Conversely, study of the industry dynamics demonstrates that 77% of private pay business owners consider caregiver shortages as the biggest threat to their care company.
My personal hero in the caregiver rentention category is Genel Webb and her team at Centerpeace Home Healthcare in NC. She has many caregivers on her team that have been providing remarkable care to clients for over a decade now bucking the trend in the homce care industry where the caregiver turn over rate can be as high as 60%.
The statistics are alarming, and home care agencies need to forge a robust plan to mitigate this growing issue.
What Can be Done?
Despite the dismaying statistics, there is strategic formulation that all home care agencies can employ to guarantee the quality of service to their clients, caregiver management, and retention. Applying the 3 legged stool concept to the key areas of caregiver recruitment, training, and retention can result in a stronger caregiver team by the end of 2018.
To mitigate the shortage of caregivers, agencies may cast a wider recruitment net when fishing for caregivers. Consequently, they may compromise on expertise and standards of the services they render.
Recruitment is the first tactical maneuver in attracting and retaining caregivers. Thus, the primary focus should be on quality, not quantity. This can be challenging when you have opportunity to add new clients but need to staff quickly. But stick with the the motto of hiring slow, firing fast.
The recruitment process usually entails an interview. Ensure that the questions you ask bring out the job description and competency levels of the applicant. There are four broad competency areas that you should investigate during the interview. They are technical skills, self-directed understanding, interpersonal skills and applied understanding.
Measure the applicants' competencies by asking a combination of questions, ranging from direct, hypothetical, skill, and behavioral problems.
Lastly, communicate the vision and mission of your agency to attract a caregiver whose values resonate with yours. If their values are in tandem with the organizations, they are more likely to stick around and help you realize it.
Caregivers are most productive working with an administration that puts their professional success first. The best way to retain caregivers is to implement a mentor program to dissipate information to new caregivers. The program has the following benefits:
- Fosters a sense of belonging among the caregivers
- Creates a positive team-centered culture
- Expands caregiver expertise and experience
- Boosts caregiver confidence and satisfaction
- Promote client confidence
- Reduce caregiver turnover
Ensure caregivers take up the mentor role in your organization. Lastly, training your caregivers routinely is elemental in guaranteeing company growth and client satisfaction.
Caregivers want recognition for their consistent delivery and efforts. Studies postulate a whooping 48.5% of caregivers would like some form of written or verbal recognition in lieu of pay raises. Dale Carnegie, the renowned author, postulates that people work for money, but go the extra mile for praise, credit, and rewards.
Incorporate incentives and rewards in your agency operations and do not shy away from a compliment where credit is due. Develop an office culture where caregivers are recognized and rewarded for quality service, positive feedback from clients, and referrals. Moreover, start programs such as employee of the month.
Yearly bonus, however small, have a significant impact on caregiver retention. Caregivers will respond positively to such gratifying incentives.
Leveraging Technological Tools
Leverage advanced tools into your operations to streamline work and make the caregiver's jobs easier. For instance, the Savii Connect Mobile App simplifies daily workflow and tasks, creating more time for caregivers to focus on the client instead of taxing paperwork.
With Savii Connect Mobile App, agencies have the ability to document client journals, create real-time schedules to execute the care plan, Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) with GPS-time tracking of client location, electronic signatures, and secure messaging. Caregivers have an easier time running through their duties of the day without much hassle.
Streamlining the day to day activities of the caregivers not only improves retention, but also saves them time and energy. This promotes both caregiver and client satisfaction.
For more information on how Savii can support you and your agency's goals, contact us.