Did you know retaining a caregiver could save your agency 3,000 dollars? According to a study by the Home Care Association of America, retaining a caregiver for just six months can save an agency over $3,000 in recruitment and training costs. In this blog post, we will discuss why home care retention is essential and provide tips on how to keep caregivers at your agency for the long term.
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Tips for Keeping Caregivers at Your Agency
1. Offer Competitive Pay and Benefits
An obvious way is to offer competitive pay and benefits. A survey by the National Private Duty Association found that pay was the most essential factor when considering a caregiver job. Offering additional benefits such as health insurance, paid time off, and retirement plans can also help entice caregivers to stay long-term. The benefits could also be more creative! Try a Netflix or Spotify subscription. Have a smaller agency? Disney Plus will allow you to have ten profiles for FREE! Although, these are small benefits it helps when caregivers are between two agencies at the same pay rate. But, we get it higher pay is not always an option.
2. Provide Ongoing Training and Support
Caregivers want to feel valued and supported by their agency. But, as an agency owner you might hear these words all the time, but what does it actually mean? For onboarding, always call caregivers before the first shift! Discuss what you can and let them know you are excited to have them at your agency. This will keep them from going to another agency and get them to their first day! During training call them every day, ask how it went, and if they have any questions you can answer. Above all else, send out an occasional text letting your caregivers know that you are here for them.
3. Create a Positive Work Environment
A positive work environment can significantly impact a caregiver’s decision to stay long-term. Agencies should prioritize creating a supportive and collaborative workplace culture where caregivers feel connected to their colleagues and appreciated for their hard work. Showing appreciation is huge for your agency! Write handwritten thank you cards, and show appreciation whenever you send a text message. Caregiving is a hard job, and these thank yous can go a long way after a hard day.
4. Flexibility and Work-Life Balance
Caregivers often juggle caregiving responsibilities with their personal lives. Offering flexibility in scheduling and providing ample time off can help caregivers maintain a work-life balance and reduce burnout. Agencies can also provide support to caregivers who may need assistance with caring for their own family members. Something GEOH suggests is to build a schedule WITH your caregivers instead of FOR them. Show caregivers their schedule first and have the caregiver approve that they can be there.
5. Communication is Key
Effective communication is vital to keeping caregivers at your agency. Caregivers want to feel that their opinions and feedback are being heard. Regularly checking in with caregivers about their job experiences, concerns, and suggestions can help address any issues before they escalate. Providing clear expectations and transparency about job duties and agency policies can also build trust and prevent misunderstandings. We know that there is a lot to caregiver communication. GEOH held a webinar on this topic and you can watch it here.
Retaining caregivers is vital for maintaining consistency, quality of care, and financial stability for home care agencies. By offering competitive pay and benefits, providing ongoing training and support, creating a positive work environment, offering flexibility, and maintaining effective communication, agencies can retain experienced caregivers and provide exceptional care to their clients. For more retention tips and advice, download our free e-book- GEOH’s Ultimate Retention Guide today!