One of the many questions we ask in our caregiver satisfaction interviews is: “How likely are you to recommend employment to others on scale of 1-10?” Based on their answer, we categorize the caregiver as being a Promotor, a Passive or a Detractor for your company. A promoter will speak positively of your agency and is pleased with how they are treated, while a detractor is generally discontent and will complain to friends and family.
Ideally, your goal would be to have all your caregivers be Promoters of your agency. How do you create caregivers that are Promoters who will stay with your home care agency long term?
One of the many guiding metrics we provide home care agencies is called the Caregiver Engagement Score. The Caregiver Engagement Score indicates how engaged your caregivers are with your agency. One thing we have found to be true is that if a caregiver has a high Caregiver Engagement Score, they are very satisfied with the amount of training they are receiving. One of the greatest ways to combat the caregiver turnover threat is to provide consistent, quality training.
Those providers who have engaged caregivers have lower turnover rates and, therefore, higher revenue. Creating and maintaining a quality caregiver training program can help keep turnover low and increase retention.
Tips for Caregiver Training to Increase Caregiver Retention
1. Be Consistent with Training
Before a caregiver is hired, make sure you share your WHY with them. In the hiring process, you want to know they are compatible with your team and advocates of your WHY. It is crucial to the retention and training process that your caregivers have an emotional connection to your agency. By consistently sharing your WHY with caregivers at trainings, you are constantly emotionally connecting them to your home care agency and motivating them to provide better service. A huge bonus is to have your office staff share your WHY as well, so when caregivers reach out to them for scheduling or other reasons, they can see and feel the WHY in that employee.
2. Revisit the Client Experience Often
During your training meetings, have a few of your caregivers stand up and share positive or learning experiences they gained in the past month. From these stories, connect their experiences back to your WHY to help caregivers reconnect with your agency and the work they’re doing.
3. Adapt the Content
When it comes to orientation and ongoing trainings, try to adapt the content to those you are training. The wonderful thing about caregiving is its diversity. Be creative in how you adapt the content. Bring in different experts on cooking or health and fitness or even budgeting. It’s not always about the dementia training or CPR. Although those are important, make training appealing to attend by providing caregivers expert advice on life skills.
When he was a home care provider, Home Care Pulse CEO, Aaron Marcum, had a caregiver who was an excellent French cook, so he had trainings that revolved around cooking tips and French recipes. His caregivers loved it because it was out of the ordinary and fun!
4. Incentivize Attending
Make attending a training appealing for your caregivers. Give your caregivers several options for attending so there is at least one session they can attend. They are often working with clients, so it’s hard for them to attend if there is only one option for a session.
Food is always a great incentive! Who doesn’t love a good meal? Provide them with good food, and they are sure to attend.
Many providers will make attending at least one training mandatory for employment. Make sure you tie this back to your WHY, so they understand that it’s in their best benefit and not a punishment.
5. Nurture Engagement
Although this one is quite simple, it can play a huge role in how your caregivers perceive trainings. Make trainings a pleasant place to be by holding it in a fun training room or a place that promotes learning and nurtures growth. At Home Care Pulse, we have a space called our Idea room. It’s a room that has fun yellow walls, comfy couches, and bean bags to relax in. We hold our meetings and trainings here because it’s a comfortable and fun place to be!
If you do these five things consistently and don’t give up, it will make a huge difference in how you go about training and keeping your caregivers engaged. Remember, caregivers who feel engaged in an agency have a higher retention rate and are most likely to refer friends and family. When you focus on training, you will see an improvement in your Caregiver Engagement Score and an increase in caregiver satisfaction.
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