By Stephen Tweed
The other day I was working with the owner of a very successful private duty company. We were talking about the challenges of growing a home care business in today’s economy. One of the interesting points he made is that it’s becoming more and more difficult to find high quality caregivers to meet his business growth plans.
As I’ve talked with owners this year about their growth, it seems that companies are either flat, or up 20% in revenue. Not many in the middle. To grow 20% you need to always be recruiting new caregivers, and working to keep the ones you have.
Over the past ten years, we’ve been conducting a lot of research in to the best techniques for recruiting, selecting, training, and retaining high quality caregivers. This research shows that the companies who have low turnover and keep great caregivers have a higher level of client satisfaction, greater word-of-mouth marketing, and higher than average revenue per client.
What can you do to grow your business and increase your revenue?
Keep the Funnel Full
One of the principles we talk about in our live workshops is the importance of having a steady stream of high quality caregivers coming into your company. To have a steady stream coming in, you need to have a steady stream of high quality applicants.
I like to use the metaphor of a funnel. You put large numbers of high quality candidates in the top. You filter them out using the Nine Step Selection System from Caregiver Quality Assurance, and you get a smaller but steady stream of very effective, committed caregivers who love what they do, who love their clients, and will tolerate you and your management style for a long time. (Sorry .. that last one’s a joke. Well … not really. The best caregivers really do lover their clients and tolerate their bosses. 🙂 )
Our research in recruiting shows the best places to find high quality candidates are:
1. Four year schools of nursing
2. The faith community – churches, synagogs, and other places of worship
3. Your own employee referral program
4. Networking in the community
5. Your own web site
Once you fill the funnel, then having a professional approach to screening the candidates is critical. The first four elements are most important:
1. The telephone screen
2. The job application
3. The pre-employment assessment of attitudes and behavior
4. The behavioral job interview
If you can master these four steps, and follow up with criminal background checks, drug screens, work references, and personal references, you’ll be able to hire high quality caregivers who will reward you with loyalty, client satisfaction, and the ability to grow your business.
For more on this concept, you may want to read the eBook, “Get the Best: Nine Steps to Hiring High Quality Caregivers and Improving Your Bottom Line in Private Duty Home Care.”