Caregiver retention starts before you even hire the caregivers—retention starts in the interview.
Caregiver turnover is on the rise, and according to the 2017 Benchmarking Study, most home care agency owners list it as one of the top three greatest threats to their company. One way to reduce your turnover is to recognize that caregiver retention starts before you even hire the caregivers—retention starts in the interview. By asking the right questions, you can identify the potential caregivers who are most likely to remain with your company and help you deliver the greatest value to your clients.
Your goal should not only be to determine who can do a good job, although this is obviously important. When hiring, you also need to identify individuals who buy in with the mission of your company and exemplify the values of your company. Not only will they do better work if they believe in the mission of your company, but they will feel more fulfilled in their work and be much more likely to stick around long-term.
The following types of questions will help you determine whether a potential caregiver would be a good fit for your company:
- Ask the candidate to share how they have lived one of your company’s core values. At Home Care Pulse, we have five core values we look for: being service-minded, passionate, driven, problem-solving, and continuously learning. When we interview new hires, we typically ask something like the following: “What kind of opportunities to volunteer have you taken?” or “Tell me about the most recent thing you’ve learned that helped you improve in your job?” While these may sound like fluff questions, a strong answer from the new hire is a powerful demonstration that working with us will be rewarding for them at both a professional and a personal level.
- Share your company’s mission statement with the candidate and ask them to explain what it means to them. In addition to living your company’s core values, prospective employees should buy in with the mission of your company and have a desire to help move it forward. It can be easy to be so focused on other important factors during the interview that you neglect to identify employees who believe in the mission of your company. For help improving your mission statement, see our guide to creating a mission statement that steers your company.
- Ask them what is most important to them in a job. Money is always a reason that people apply for jobs, but there’s a difference between the reason you apply for a job and the reason you get out of bed in the morning once you have the job. What keeps you coming to work, and what makes it worthwhile for you while you’re there? If you can understand what makes an employee look forward to coming to work every day, you can know whether your company will keep an employee engaged.
A Word of Caution
If you are strapped for caregivers or struggling from a shortage of applicants, hiring employees based on their connection to the company mission or values may feel like a luxury your current field of applicants doesn’t offer you. However, in the long-term, putting in the effort to find the right people always pays off. Besides having to rehire fewer new caregivers in the future, bringing the right people into your company creates positive ripples across your entire business.
Bottom Line: Your Company’s WHY
Ask questions that ensure whether prospective caregivers understand and identify with the WHY of your company—the reason you do what you do. At Home Care Pulse, our CEO Aaron Marcom personally meets with new hires during their first few weeks to go over the WHY of our company with them. The result is employees who feel valued for their work and engaged in the company’s purpose. If you can identify employees who feel a personal connection to your company’s mission, you have identified employees who have a compelling reason to stay. Over time, this will help you build a reputation as an agency that hires caregivers who are personally committed to making people’s lives better.
Of course, there are many reasons why caregivers leave, and poor fit with the company is only one of the reasons. As you ask interview questions to help you identify employees who will be a good fit for your company, consider how else you can make your company a place where caregivers want to stay. Our Quality Management Program is a versatile tool to help you with this by providing you with real feedback on where your caregivers and clients believe you can improve. Contact us now to schedule a consultation.
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