Miscalculating your staffing needs can have a crippling effect on the growth of your home care business. While your company may be able to carry the weight of extra employees for a while, over time the company will sink under the unnecessary weight. Similarly, if you hire too few employees, your staff morale will drop along with your quality of care as your employees struggle to get everything done. Staffing is a balancing act between preparing for growth and meeting your current needs. So, how do you know when you’ve achieved that balance?
Striking that balance and determining how many employees to hire should not be a matter of guess work or instinct. There are a few key figures you should track in order to make those calls. First, keep tabs on your financial landscape. Rather than reacting to every fluctuation in your company cash flow, keep a long-range perspective on your sales and profits. As you review past revenues and forecast sales for the next 90 days, few months, or coming year, you’ll be able to determine if the growth or slump you see in your revenue is temporary or lasting.
Reviewing industry standards for hiring is also key to understanding where your company stands. Frequently calculate your sales per full-time employee and compare it to industry norms for your revenue range using data from the 2016 Home Care Benchmarking Study. If your numbers fall significantly above or below the industry norms, it may be a sign that you need to reevaluate your staffing.
If you find that your sales per full-time employee significantly surpasses industry norms, take a look at your client satisfaction, and determine if hiring more employees could improve your quality of service. If, on the other hand, you discover that you are overstaffed, it’s probably time to make some difficult cuts. Evaluate typical staffing summaries for home care providers in your region and revenue range. Using these summaries as a guide, check for any clear areas of excess in your company. If work gets done just as well when one staff member is out on vacation, it may be a sign that you have a surplus of positions in that department.
Though letting go of an employee is always difficult, when it comes to staffing, you need to put your company first. As you use data to staff strategically, you’ll be able to deliver higher quality care and prepare your company for the future. To learn more strategies for successful staffing, join us for this month’s CORE webinar. I’ll discuss how to determine if you’re under- or overstaffed as well as provide a free tool to calculate your sales per full-time employee. I hope to see you there.