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We’re Home Care Pulse, a leading provider of experience management & surveys, caregiver/CNA training, and online reputation management.

If home care came with an instruction manual to start off the new year—this would be it. 2022 is almost here, and we’ve got your New Year’s Resolutions covered. 

As 2021 comes to a close, it’s time to start thinking about your agency’s 2022 New Year’s resolutions. We’ve made a list (and checked it twice) to help your agency gain traction during the holiday downtime.

A Harvard Business Study found that you are three times more likely to accomplish your goals if you write them down. So, grab a pen and start 2022 off right together with this home care checklist:

  • Conduct a 40-Hour Focus

  • Revaluate if You’re Tracking the Right KPIs

  • Discuss Your Employees’ New Year’s Resolutions

  • Define Your Right-Fit Client

  • Solidify Your Employer Brand

  • Focus Your Recruitment on Referrals

  • Qualify for the Best of Home Care Awards

Conduct a 40-Hour Focus

If it seems impossible to squeeze one more task onto your to-do list, you may be mistaking hours worked for productivity. Start 2022 off right by eliminating all the inefficient nonessentials that are holding you back.

Jessica Nobles, Executive Director of Home Care Ops, conducted a 40-hour focus where she tracked her agency’s productivity for two weeks. She wrote out all the tasks her agency needed to do, then two weeks later put a check mark next to every completed task and circled the tasks that were still in progress.

By the end of those two weeks, she found that there were nearly twice as many circled tasks as completed tasks. To maximize the productivity of each work week, she created the “Oh DEAR” evaluation method.

After conducting your own 40-hour focus, approach each incomplete task by asking yourself:

  • Can I Delegate it?

  • Can I Eliminate it?

  • Can I Automate it?

  • Can I Repeat it?

 

Reevaluating your agency’s top priorities will help you create goals you’re much more likely to accomplish and, in turn, clarify your expectations for employees. In 2022, clean out your to-do list and make room for your top priorities.

Reevaluate if You’re Tracking the Right KPIs

The obstacles keeping you from accomplishing your goals may be disguised as budget inefficiencies.

Tim Smith, Owner of FirstLight Home Care in Oklahoma City goes into depth on how to manage your budget to see if you are tracking the right Key Performance Indicators (KPIs):

“When I think about finance, I always think about a quote that was attributed to mark Twain: ‘Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody ever does anything about it.’ I think about finance the same way. When I talked to other owners about finance, I always want them to understand that your financial performance is not the weather—you don’t have to just sit and watch it happen and wait to see if it’s going to rain today or not. You have influence. You can’t control everything, but there are things that are within your influence in your agency.”

His top KPIs to look at for your 2022 financial planning are:

  • Know your gross margin

  • Conduct a break-even analysis across 3-6 months

  • Understand your budget and financial expenses

 

Dissect your budget to shed light on how much you could be saving your agency to make 2022 your most profitable year yet.

Discuss Your Employees’ New Year’s Resolutions

Why did 65% of caregivers quit in the last year? Their top complaint: lack of training. Offering adequate training to your employees in the new year has never been more crucial to ensure your caregivers’ satisfaction with your agency.

As 4 out of every 5 caregivers work for more than one agency, you can position yourself as the employer of choice by providing your employees with continuing education paths that allow them to move up the career ladder.

Show you are invested in your employees’ potential by conducting a New Year’s resolution one-on-one meeting to discuss each employee’s professional goals.

Our annual Home Care Benchmarking Study found that agencies who offer 8 or more hours of training generated an average of 42% more revenue than those who offered 3 hours or less.

Position your agency to retain your employees in the new year by offering personalized training in the areas your employees would like to specialize in.

Define Your “Right-Fit Client”

Is the client always right? We’ve done the math.

Your agency loses $2,600 for every caregiver who quits and $19,500 for every scheduler who leaves your agency—but you only lose an average of $595 for each client who leaves. Sometimes, the most expensive decision you can make is choosing to keep a hard-to-staff client who is driving employees away and giving your agency a bad reputation.

Client Nobles, Founder and CEO of Home Care Ops, explained that defining the qualifications and parameters of your ideal client will save you the trouble of later needing to fire clients who are hard to staff:

“Retention costs less than recruitment. Understand that your team is your top priority. We don’t need to instantly believe that our team is at fault or act on emotion. Instead, we need to provide a professional solution and make a business decision.

“Get laser-focused on your right-fit client. Take 10 minutes today to clarify exactly what the right fit client looks like for your agency because when you find clarity in your right-fit client, it will give you control and confidence.”

This new year, protect your team’s needs first. Define the type of client your agency can realistically provide for and use it as a benchmark while taking on new clients.

Solidify Your Employer Brand

During the largest caregiver shortage in history, building a solid employer brand will be the deciding factor for which agencies stay in business. In a 2018 Reputation Management Study by the MRI Network, researchers found that 71% of job seekers would not accept a job offer from an employer with a weak or bad employment brand.

Hireology’s Director of Health Care Market Growth, Chris Mercer, explained how your employer brand can be your best recruitment tool:

“An excellent employer brand will basically serve as an organization’s best recruitment tool to persuade job seekers that your organization is an employer of choice. As an employer, your most important first step is to build a really strong employer brand.”

Take these steps to build a memorable employer brand just in time for 2022:

  • Survey employees and check your online reviews to evaluate how your brand is currently perceived by the public.

  • As an agency, define your desired employer brand in 3-5 core values.

  • Identify one concrete step you can take to promote each of your core values in the next month (for example, if one is “continuous learning,” you can create additional training paths for your caregivers.)

 

Give your employer brand a reputation makeover and take control of the message you’re communicating.

Focus Your Recruitment on Referrals

2.3 million people are searching for a career change in the new year, making 2022 the perfect time to implement an employee referral program.

According to LinkedIn’s Employee Referral Statistics, referred employees are four times more likely to be hired than a non-referral and will save a company an average of $7,500 per hire in productivity and sourcing costs.

Which is good news for the home care industry. While 37% of caregivers used the internet to see whether your agency was hiring, referrals made by current employees ranked as the second highest source of caregiver recruitment.

caregiver recruitment sources

(Note: To take a closer look at the image above, right-click to “open in new tab.”)

Here are a few ways to help you get started:

  • Identify your hiring values and communicate them clearly to everyone in the company.

  • Choose your incentive. A common incentive is $200-500 once the referred employee has stayed at your company for 90 days.

  • Create a simple, consistent process to submit and track referrals.

  • Reward referring employees. Show extra appreciation to employees who consistently send you high-quality candidates.

  • Track your spending and turnover rate to keep improving your program.

Qualify for the Best of Home Care Awards

There is no better time than the new year to set new business goals – like earning a Best of Home Care Award that will distinguish you from your competitors. One past award winner explained that 45-50% of their referrals ask about the agency’s Best of Home Care awards when they call.

These awards aren’t just given to anyone. They are based on client and caregiver satisfaction ratings in multiple categories collected from telephone interviews performed by Home Care Pulse.

Tune in to our webinar to view this year’s award recipients and learn their tips for qualifying for next year’s Best of Home Care Awards.

There’s A Lot More Where This Came From

The goal-making doesn’t have to end with this checklist.

If you’ve ever found yourself saying, “If only home care came with an instruction manual,” you’ve come to the right place.

The Home Care Benchmarking Study is more than historical—it is futuristic,” explains the former CEO of Home Care Pulse, Erik Madsen. “It points us in a direction of where the trends are taking us, where we are headed as an industry, and lets us know what we need to be aware of. The Home Care Benchmarking Study can be viewed as a playbook.”

Make your own data-driven New Year’s resolutions for your agency and see how you compare to other competitors based on the newest insights in the Home Care Benchmarking Study.

What are your agency’s goals for 2022? The American Psychological Association recommends sharing your experiences to help you accomplish your resolutions, so leave a comment below.

We’re Home Care Pulse, a leading provider of experience management & surveys, caregiver/CNA training, and online reputation management.

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2 Comments

  1. Athena January 13, 2022 at 1:10 pm - Reply

    Another great read, Julie! Well done, thanks for sharing.

  2. Michael Fallquist January 26, 2022 at 12:09 pm - Reply

    It’s interesting that you bring up the idea of a 40-hour focus, as it can help business owners better understand how their companies are running from day to day. The data gathered from this is invaluable.

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