Senior care communities need good employees to run like a well-oiled machine. But these facilities are encountering a lot of staffing problems. There’s a shortage of skilled workers. Competition for experienced staff in the healthcare industry is also intense. There are also issues about wages and staff reporting requirements.
Many companies have chosen to hire part-time workers to resolve their staffing problems. Statistics show that about 24.73 million people are working part-time in the US for the last two years. These hourly workers represent more than half of the country’s current workforce.
A senior living management company can opt to hire more part-time workers. It can help them meet the needs of the residents. But this type of worker presents a challenge when it comes to managing them and keeping them engaged.
Here are some tips in managing hourly employees in senior living facilities.
Keep Steady Schedules But Allow for Flexibility
Scheduling is one of the hardest parts of managing full-time employees. It’s more challenging when you also have hourly workers to consider. Part-time workers want a flexible schedule for many reasons. Most hourly workers are very young. They’re either students or those still on the fence about their career options. Some are parents or family caretakers.
Management should take steps to develop consistent schedules for all their staff. It will give hourly workers the chance to adjust their own timetable. It also prevents incessant days off and ensures all residents are being cared for well. You can use the following strategies:
- Use individualized schedules to accommodate every employee’s need.
- Create and release schedules weeks in advance. This will prevent conflicts with the worker’s activities. Use a combination of mobile technology and scheduling software to achieve this.
- Give employees reasonable control over their time. Make sure your scheduling software is accessible to the managers and staff. This will allow them to see their schedules 24/7. They can adjust or give advance notice if they can’t work on a certain day.
- Make sure every shift has the right amount of workers. There should be a mix of full-time and hourly health professionals. Salaried workers ensure continuity of care. But hourly employees can bring down costs and address overtime situations.
Stay Connected to Your Hourly Employees
It is hard for senior housing management top brass to keep connected with their employees. They often don’t work on the same floor. If you’re managing an extensive retirement community, your staff is often spread out. They might not even be working the same hours as you. This is often the case with part-time workers. Your challenge will be to keep engaging with your staff even when you don’t see them on a regular basis.
The best way to do this is to have a standard communication process. Everyone should be aware of this and should use it. It will help keep everyone connected. Your hourly workers will be able to communicate with their respective teams. They can also reach out to their managers without any problems.
There are several communication methods you can use to touch base.
- Send internal newsletters on a regular basis. This will inform everyone of the latest news around the senior community.
- Use text messages or send emails. This is one of the fastest ways to engage with your staff. It can become time-consuming so you’ll need to invest or learn to use email outreach tools.
- Use sites like Slack or design a company messaging app. You can use Slack to open various channels of communication with your employees. You can use it to send a message to all employees. They can reply and even interact with their colleagues.
Encourage Employees to Give Feedback
Listening is crucial when it comes to managing your employees. It can lower attrition rates and keep them engaged with the management. You should show that you’re concerned about them and that you hear what they’re saying. You should make sure you act on their concerns to show that you’re sincere.
Assisted living heads should also check in with their staff to secure their feedback. You can do this through focus groups and employee surveys. One-on-one chats are also great. It’s more personal and reduces misinformation.
Acknowledge Hourly Workers
Every worker should receive a competitive rate, even if they’re an hourly employee. It’s one of the best ways to keep good people. Aside from that, management should acknowledge and reward their hard work. There are many ways you can show your appreciation to your staff.
- Give gift cards for certain accomplishments. You can award these to those with perfect attendance. It’s also a good prize for someone who received a commendation from a resident.
- Have an Employee-of-the-Month award. This is one of the best ways to bolster morale. It also shows your workers that you see and appreciate their hard work. It will also encourage them to work harder.
Did you get new insights on managing your senior facility? You should also read this post on key roles to fill in your senior living community.
Success within Your Reach
The right advice and people can go a long way in ensuring the success of your senior community. Apricus Senior Living can give that to you. We are one of the best consulting firms in the senior living industry today. Our team of experts can provide you with all you need to develop and market your senior care facility. We also offer franchise opportunities with serious ROI. You can get in touch with us at 386-256-2015 or at email@example.com.