Technological development and its use have been extensive and varied and the home care industry is not any exception. Use of technology can help you not only to improve your quality of service but will also help you in employee retention, an issue that is most commonly faced by almost all home care service agencies.
If you want to hold on to the most qualified and talented caregivers and not use technology for it, you can be in trouble. Caregiver shortage is something that looms on this industry predominantly with potentially disastrous effects. With the rate of turnover in excess to 65% you cannot afford such things to happen to your agency.
Therefore, investing in technology to deal with caregiver churn and employee retention will help you to eliminate this biggest challenge that you are sure to face some time or the other down the line. This will prove to be productive and high yielding in the long run.
The secret ingredient
The secret component to retain employees in the home care industry is technology. This is because it will prevent you from scrambling through different options to find out the best ways for it. In turn it will also:
- Save your time
- Make your employees happier
- Prevent breaking your budget
- Avoid losses in turnover and revenue and
- Find success and increase business growth.
Using the right kind of technology will bring in transparency into your business in its every aspect including how your caregivers deliver care to the elders and senior patients.
The contradictory factors
Well use of technology will certainly improve your quality of work as well as help you to retain the caregivers more effectively it may have some effects on the caregivers as such.
- There may be a few caregivers who may not appreciate the use of this and the level of visibility it will provide. They may worry about the “Big Brother” monitoring of their every activity.
- They may also worry about the fact that such excessive reliance on technology will in turn simply help the management to provide an excuse for less hands-on support.
Bad as it may seem, in fact there are a few good things of using technology in your home care agency which are in contradiction to the above concerns of the caregivers. These positive sides are:
- The increased transparency level among the management and the caregivers will result in an environment that will make the caregivers feel supported truly by their management.
- This will in turn help in and influence employee retention because the caregivers will be happier felling more supported.
Therefore, irrespective of the contradiction in feelings and behavior, implementing technology in your care service can prove to be extremely productive both in the short as well as in the long run.
Ways in which technology helps
Technically, there are many specific ways in which technology can help in employee retention in home care agencies.
The most significant of all seems to be when it comes to dealing with the paperwork. This is because of several reasons.
- Ideally, technology will help you to deal with the paperwork more effectively and quickly. Typically, most of the caregivers are over-scheduled and therefore cannot find enough time to complete the notes and record the facts and findings from each visit in between customer appointments. That means a lot of things.
- Frequently the caregivers will have to take this home to complete the paperwork which is very necessary. However, exhausted as they are at the end of the day, completing the paperwork later in the same evening is often harder if not impossible to do, or at least do it well than it may seem.
- As a result of this accuracy and on time preparation of documentation suffers. In fact, it is found through research that accuracy in documentation is as low as 63% for only a couple of hours delay in transcribing the noes by the caregivers. This is neither great news nor a number.
Inaccurate and improper records will affect the entire care service as the next caregiver will find it very hard if not impossible to deliver appropriate care to the client on time. This is said assuming that the next caregiver has access to these notes even, in the first place.
Moreover, if the first caregiver has to take the papers to home to prepare and back to office the next day for the second caregiver to have it, it increases the risks by a considerable extent along with a lot of questions such as:
- What if the first caregiver cannot attend office for a couple of days for personal or health reasons?
- What happens to the care for the patient?
- Should be given on assumption?
- Should the other caregiver have to make do with whatever available on the remaining file?
- Or should you hunt down the first caregiver with all your staff in the office thereby losing on business, productivity and workforce hours?
Well, all these possibilities and risks can be eliminated and the accuracy of the visit notes can jump as high as 93% if all the caregivers use technology for recording their visits. Such electronically completed visit notes will be available for all responsible to access at the point of care.
Digital documentation in in vogue in almost all industries as it shrinks the subjectivity that is mostly associated with the transition of caregiving and these caregiver notes and its transcriptions. There are several other reasons as well such as:
- Instead of writing extended descriptions manually caregivers can use customized digital solutions for the same that may include short text fields, radio buttons, and standardized responses
- The quality of such notes will not be affected by the moods of the caregivers and
- This upgraded accuracy will ensure that everyone involved in the team for the extended care of a particular client has all the necessary insights to deliver perfect, great and on time care.
There will be no subjectivity and no waiting to get the document and it will better agency performance audits.