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Three Keys to Retaining Top Caregivers

By Stephen Tweed

What does it cost you when a top caregiver quits?

What does it cost you when 49% of your caregivers leave in one year?

Turnover in home care is expensive and costs your company a lot of money.  Our research at Leading Home Care and The Academy for Private Duty Home Care shows that in a typical home care company, the cost of making one bad hire is $829.25.  The annual turnover for a median sized home care company in 2011 was 49.8%.  Do the math and you will find that a home care company with 100 caregivers and 49.8% turnover will spend $41,462.50 on the cost of replacing lost staff and the lost opportunity costs that go with it.

Three Keys to Keeping Top Talent

Further research by Leading Home Care into caregiver retention shows us three key areas that you can focus on in order to reduce your caregiver turnover.

1.  Appreciation and Recognition

Caregivers will stay with your company if they feel valued and appreciated.  When you put together a focused, consistent process to show appreciation and recognition for your caregivers, you will reduce your turnover.

Leigh Davis, the CEO of ELDirect In Home Elderly Care in Fayetteville, AR reported reducing his turnover from 25% to 16% over a two year period.  (Leigh is the co-author of our top selling eBook, Get The Best: 9 Stops to Hiring High Quality Caregivers.)  Compare that to the 49.8% national average and you can see how significant these results can be.  It begins with hiring the right people. Then it’s about finding ways to show your caregivers that they matter/

2.  Meaningful Work

As part of our Strategic Planning process, we’ve conducted dozens of focus groups with home care staff at all levels.  It’s always a joy to conduct focus groups with the “Best Caregivers” who have been doing this for 25 year or more. When we ask them why they do what they do, it becomes obvious that they really care about their clients, and they really believe they are making a difference in people’s lives.

When you hire the right caregivers and then help them feel like they are doing significant work, they will stay with you.

3.  Servant Leadership

People will stay with a company when they believe the owner is a leader who puts service before self.  Servant Leadership is a biblical principle that was made meaningful by the work of Robert Greenleaf.  In his many essays and books about the concept of Servant Leadership, he illustrates the values, principles, and practices of true servant leaders. 

You can increase your employee retention in the field and in your office if you study and practice the principles of Servant Leadership. 

To learn more about the principles of appreciation and recognition, meaningful work, and servant leadership, visit the Academy for Private Duty Home Care and sign up for our online learning courses or our live workshops.  There’s more detail to follow. 

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