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

Hundreds of home care agencies across North America have shared their business data with us, and we’re making their industry secrets public. Be the first to know about the latest 2022 trends no one saw coming that are shaping the industry.

Looking for the latest news in home care? You’ve come to the right place. The only place where industry experts reveal their secrets to help fellow agency owners like you make more informed, data-driven business decisions.

We’ve surveyed over 760 home care providers, representing over 1,461 locations, to find out exactly what is and isn’t working in home care.

And the results will surprise you.

Chosen from over 200 pages in the most comprehensive national report in the industry, get your hands on the 7 biggest findings in home care that we’re positive everyone will want to know sooner rather than later:

  • Trend #1: The caregiver shortage negatively impacted nearly 100% of providers—the worst it’s ever been 

  • Trend #2: Client growth rises to the highest rate we’ve seen in 4 years as median revenue increases 

  • Trend #3: People’s opinion of your agency directly affects your revenue—by as much as 35% 

  • Trend #4: Agency owners are still worried about COVID-19—making 2021 the first year it ranks as one of their top threats 

  • Trend #5: Indeed continues to recruit the most new hires, but it’s causing the highest turnover rate 

  • Trend #6: Agency owners are strengthening their compensation plans to compete in a crowded labor market 

  • Trend #7: Agency owners who offer both ongoing and orientation training see a $700,000 increase in revenue

     

Trend #1: The Caregiver Shortage Negatively Impacted Nearly 100% of Providers—the Worst it’s Ever Been

98% of agency owners admit that the caregiver shortage has had a negative impact on their business—which means only 2% of providers felt like they had adequate staff to run their agency.

To make matters worse, agencies who reported that the shortage caused an extremely negative impact jumped by nearly 10% from last year.

Agency owners haven’t struggled with caregiver shortages this much in 3 years.

caregiver shortages in 2021


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As a result, 85% of all home care providers have had to turn down client cases due to a lack of staff.

It’s no wonder 80% of agency owners view caregiver shortages/turnover as their number one threat—which is why providers have named building a caregiver recruitment and retention program as their top priority this year.

What this means for home care: Building a strong recruitment and retention program should be at the top of every agency owner’s to-do list.

Although the number of agencies who experienced caregiver shortages has increased, the rate of caregiver turnover has stayed nearly the same for the past 3 years. This means that the issue with caregiver turnover doesn’t lie recruitment, but in retention of them.

Recruit for retention from the start and break the cycle of caregiver turnover in 5 simple steps:

  • Step #1: Prepare for success by defining your ideal candidate, developing your employer brand and deciding on total compensation. 

  • Step #2: Choose the right recruitment sources by learning how to navigate online job boards and social media, host virtual hiring events and in-person job fairs, work with a recruiter, and create a caregiver referral program. 

  • Step #3: Optimize your job postings to offer what candidates really want, go mobile-first not just mobile-friendly, create easier applications, choose between paid or free ads, and track your successes.  

  • Step #4: Put your caregivers first in the hiring process by speeding it up, asking the right interview questions, setting realistic expectations, and staying in closer contact from application to offer.  

  • Step #5: Onboard for retention by improving your post-accepted offer communication, understanding what gets your caregivers to show up their first day, and learning how to support your caregivers in their first 90-days where turnover rates are at their highest.

     

Trend #2: Client Growth Rises to the Highest Rate We’ve Seen in 4 Years as Median Revenue Increases

Despite the discouraging effects of the caregiver shortage felt by all owners, home care agencies are actually doing better than they have for the last 4 years!

Home care providers experienced 7.3% client growth on average last year, surpassing the mere 5.0% growth seen in 2020. Client growth hasn’t been this high since before 2018.

median client growth rate


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Median revenue also has continued to grow. In the last 4 years, median revenue has grown by 7.1%.

median revenue


To top it off, those who use Home Care Pulse generated on average 48 % more in annual revenue versus non-users.

What this means for home care: Providers are combating the caregiver shortage by focusing their energy on strengthening relationships with their client and referral sources as their second highest priority in 2022.

At the end of the day, home care comes down to the people you’re caring for: your clients.

Despite the caregiver shortage, agencies who prioritize building strong relationships with their clients are thriving and seeing an increase in revenue because of it.

But don’t just take our word for it.

Let’s see how paying attention to the good, the bad, and the ugly that your clients are saying about you affects over 35% of your total income.

Trend #3: People’s Opinion of Your Agency Directly Affects Your Revenue—by as Much as 35%

From what your caregivers say about working for your agency at the end of the day to the reputation you have among your clients’ friends—their opinions are generating over 35% of your total income.

In fact, word of mouth and client referrals rank as the number one marketing source for 2021, according to the 2022 HCP Benchmarking Report. In response to this, home care providers across North America have made it their second highest priority to strengthen their relationship with referral sources.

What this means for home care: Owners are becoming more intentional about their agency’s reputation, both in-person and online.

The best way to ensure your agency has a positive reputation is to be intentional about your relationships with both your clients and your caregivers.

Your agency’s reputation speaks even before you do—and most of it is happening online. As 88% of all consumers read reviews about local businesses before committing, manage your online reviews and keep track of what people are saying about you online.

Carefully build your relationship with your clients and caregivers to ensure they’re left raving about your agency when the day is done.

HCP Benchmarking Study

2022 HCP Benchmarking Report Survey

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Trend #4: Agency Owners Are Still Worried About COVID-19—Making 2021 the First Year it Ranks as One of Their Top 5 Threats

Surprisingly, 2021 was the first year that the continued spread of COVID-19 made it to agency owners’ list of top 5 threats—surpassing the fear of rising business expenses.

As the 4th top threat, 17.8% of providers are worried about it impacting the future growth of their business.

However, this common concern may be exactly what is driving this year’s increased client growth.

What this means for home care: The industry is reaching new heights after earning an increased level of appreciation in the healthcare space due to the pandemic.

Vicki Hoak, CEO of the Home Care Association of America (HCAOA) explained that the recognition of home care abounds post-pandemic:

“This year, HCAOA released a new report, State of Home Care: Industry at a Crossroads, to illustrate how the pandemic spotlighted how older and vulnerable populations are too often left behind. According to AARP, 95% of all American COVID-19 deaths were among people 50 and older, and approximately 40% of all deaths were in long-term care (nursing home, skilled nursing and assisted living) facilities.

Throughout the pandemic, the importance and value of care in the home, especially for older Americans at risk of worsening physical health and social isolation, have come into clear focus. It is our hope that the increased awareness emerging from the global crisis will create momentum for policymakers across the country to address these faults in our healthcare system. For the home care industry, it has only strengthened our focus on efforts to provide quality care and keep older Americans in their homes and safe.”

Trend #5: Indeed Continues to Recruit the Most New Hires, but it’s Causing the Highest Turnover Rate

Indeed remains the number one most effective recruitment source for agency owners—but it comes with its challenges in the retention phase.

While 38% of all new hires were recruited through Indeed, caregivers from this top recruitment source also had the highest turnover rate and the second highest caregiver acquisition cost.

top 2021 recruitment sources


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What this means for home care: Agency owners will need to use multiple hiring methods in their recruitment strategy to hire for retention and compete in a competitive job market.

Although Indeed is a popular choice among home care agency owners, it is currently attracting only your shortest-term employees. The high volume of applicants available on Indeed will require owners to be more selective to hire the best long-term caregivers.

Which means if you want what’s best for your revenue in the long run, Indeed cannot be your only source of recruitment. You’ll need to recruit for retention from the beginning.

To succeed in a competitive job market at the lowest cost, you need all 6 essentials to build a successful recruitment strategy:

  • Use online job postings 

  • Network at career fairs 

  • Hold virtual hiring events 

  • Incentivize employees with referral programs 

  • Expedite your onboarding process 

  • Tell your story with an employer brand

     

Trend #6: Agency Owners are Strengthening their Compensation Plans to Compete in a Crowded Labor Market

Big chain employers all over the country combatted pandemic-induced employee shortages by raising their minimum wages, making it more difficult for independent home care agencies to compete.

As a result, home care agencies everywhere increased their employee wages by $1-2 for every position: Companion/Homemaker, Personal Care Attendant, Certified Nurse Assistant, and Registered Nurse.

median 2021 hourly caregiver wages


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In addition, 90% of all home care agencies now provide their employees with benefits, improving their compensation packages for less than the cost of high salary bumps.

The top benefits providers offer are:

  • 1. Travel reimbursement 

  • 2. PTO 

  • 3. Major health insurance 

  • 4. Dental/supplement 

  • 5. Sick leave 

  • 6. Daily/weekly pay

     

What this means for home care: Providers everywhere will need to increase their hourly wage and strengthen their benefits package to compete in a post-pandemic landscape.

You are resilient and resourceful. The industry is proving to push back stronger than ever to make 2022 the most successful year in home care yet.

If you haven’t already, providers who plan to compete in this labor market will need to offer a pay increase and take a look at improving the benefits they offer.

Only 1 in every 10 home care agencies don’t currently offer caregivers benefits. Offering benefits has become an industry-wide standard, and many job seekers won’t accept anything less.

If you’re one of the 10% of providers who doesn’t currently offer your employees benefits, it’s time to invest in them if you want to make it another year.

Trend #7: Agency Owners Who Offer Both Ongoing and Orientation Training See a $700,000 Increase in Revenue

68% of home care agencies now use a professional training program, and for good reason!

Those who offer at least 8 hours of training in orientation and 12 ongoing training hours are making $701,072 more in revenue each year than agencies who only train the minimum hours needed for compliance. Yet the average agency currently only offers 5 hours of orientation training and 8 hours of ongoing training.

However, providers are beginning to recognize the benefits of training more than ever before as 83% of providers now offer specialty training courses.

What this means for home care: Agency owners will need to offer both the basic and specialized training courses to stay current in an advancing industry.

Only you can ensure that your caregivers don’t see their position as a dead-end—and that 7 hours of missed training doesn’t cost you $700,000.

As HCP Training took the top spot for training providers this year, it’s never been easier to offer orientation, ongoing, and specialized training to your employees.

Stay current by ensuring you’re training your employees on the top 5 topics agencies are prioritizing:

  • Personal care (ADLS) 

  • Client safety 

  • Infection control basics 

  • Employee safety 

  • Coronavirus

     

Not only do specialized training programs decrease the chance of 90-day turnover, they also enable your staff to provide the quality of care your clients are looking for.

Enhance your services and employee morale by offering at least the top 3 most popular specialized training courses according to the percentage of employers who offer it:

  • Alzheimer’s 82% 

  • Dementia 76% 

  • Palliative care 43% 

  • Behavioral health 32% 

  • Infection control 27% 

  • Reducing admissions 16% 

  • Restorative care 13%

     

What’s considered trendy today will be expected tomorrow—so the time to hop on these 2022 trends begins now.

Get the Full Scoop with the 2022 HCP Benchmarking Report

You are the future of the industry. After utilizing these trends, providers all over the nation will be asking you how you did it and waiting to see what you’ll do next.

And there’s still more where this came from!

Discover dozens more trends from the hundreds of data points in the 200+ page newly released 2022 HCP Benchmarking Report. Be the first to hop on these trends and, by next year, you could be the next provider shaping the industry in home care’s most comprehensive national report.

Learn more:

HCP’s Care Intelligence Platform offers RN-developed training, satisfaction surveys, and reputation management tools to help you become the best employer and provider in your area—and make sure everyone knows about it.

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