Undoubtedly care agencies can act as a true life-saver for people who need assistance. However, this is usually a daunting and difficult task for both the patient and their caretaker(s).
From too much paperwork, high turnover, poor communication, a lack of engagement and more, care agencies are facing a plethora of challenges. That’s why we decided to focus on how hundreds of care agencies turned to Connecteam to help them overcome those challenges, dramatically improving their operations, communication and engagement with their caregivers.
Challenges care agencies faced before Connecteam:
Nothing but paperwork
“All key paperwork is completed via traditional methods like paper forms. This is an inefficient process as these forms need to be seen and acted on by management immediately, but we weren’t always getting these forms. Additionally, we were also sending out a lot of information and attachments over emails to our employees that take up too much time.”
Information is scattered all over the place
“Materials that our caregivers need on a regular basis are either in the office or they lug around to each location. It’s inconvenient and a mess. Any time we need to update these materials, we have to print out new papers and hand them out to each caregiver and that’s not always easy with everyone’s schedules. We can never be 100% sure each caregiver has the latest material.”
Employee engagement and communication is lacking
“Our staff aren’t able to communicate with each other easily, most numbers of other carers are saved on their personal phone or aren’t at all.”
“Updating our carers takes too much time, whether it’s a birthday wish or an important procedural update, we are either sending mass emails or text messages. Tracking who read what is tedious and takes too long.”
Training new carers takes time
“We tend to have a lot of carers leaving within the first six months so all that time we spend training and ob-boarding them is irrelevant. We need a more efficient and quick way to do this, while still ensuring the new carer is professional and ready to go.”
“Phoenix Homecare and Support objectives were to improve employee engagement, digitize our paper forms and create a central company hub. Connecteam has helped us to achieve all these objectives, we were surprised at how much of an impact it had made to our day to day running of the company. Our employees are engaging on the app on a daily basis and completing important forms more frequently than before. As a Domiciliary care agency, it’s important for us to be able to give our carers the tools they need to be able to do their roles effectively.” – Garrett Williams
How Connecteam helps you tackle common challenges:
Communicating with caregivers is critical but not an easy task, with the majority of the team on the go, keeping everyone on the same page and engaged can pose a real challenge. Here are some of the best communication methods and tools used by care agencies/care providers utilizing Connecteam:
- Realtime push notifications and updates: for both formal and informal communication. From celebrating birthdays and events, to sending a CEO memo, to updating on new services available, shift changes, or new openings in the company.
- Targeted communication: Providing each employee with the relevant information they need. Easily differentiating between probation, hourly, interim employee, care service managers, caregivers or sites.
- Employee directory: making it easy to find the contact details of team members, with full permission management.
- Chat groups and channels: to streamline day-to-day communication easily and efficiently, and to allow caregivers a communication channel with their respective manager.
Boosting employee engagement
Care agencies often feel the need to put the caregivers in the center and to uplift the general employee engagement in the companies. Some of the common practices used to achieve improved employee engagement include:
- Periodical surveys – whether it’s a simple two-question feedback survey or a robust employee satisfaction survey, care agencies use Connecteam to allow employees to share their feedback with ease and efficiency.
- Trainer feedback – allowing the caregiver to provide feedback on the trainer and the training session.
- Newsletters – newsletters are an efficient way to keep the team on the same page, providing recent updates on the business, activities, growth etc.
- Photo albums and images – sharing of photos and images from key events with the team.
- Suggestion box – often used to let all team members share their ideas and thoughts in real-time for how to do things better and raise improvement ideas.
- Open door policy – care providers with an open door policy allows their caregivers address key stakeholders (service managers, leadership, HR) with questions or issues, providing a direct channel that is trackable and efficient.
Better compliance company-wide
As compliance is a big part of care agencies and care providers day-to-day, ‘Read and sign’ forms are common, and are often utilized by compliance officers for individual acknowledgment of company policies and regulations.
Commonly used Read & Sign compliance documents include the following:
- Opting out of the 48hrs working time directive
- Medication policies and procedures
- Administration of medication policy
- Assistance in self-administration of medication policy
- Auditing and monitoring of medication policy
- Collection of prescription policy
- Controlled drugs policy
- Medication away from home policy
- Medication error and near-miss policy
- Over the counter medication
- Safe Disposal of medication policy and procedure
- Storage of medication policy and procedure
- Training and competency policy and procedure
- Sexual harassment policy
- Other read and sign documents.
Automating checklists and reports
As day-to-day operations are often accompanied by relevant paperwork, care agencies digitize daily forms, checklists, and report and therefore reduce friction from day-to-day activities, automate information flow, improve response time, and gain better oversight. Here are some popular examples:
- Supervisor inspection summary report for a caregiver
- Fall risk assessment
- Medication risk assessment
- Hoist checklist
- Bed rail assessment
- Equipment visual check
- Night worker assessment
- Incident report
- Annual leave
- Mileage tracking (weekly or monthly)
- Expense reimbursement
- Employee performance review
All entries submitted by employees are digitally logged, can be automatically sent to a predefined email address as a PDF copy and can also be exported in an Excel supported format.
A smooth on-boarding process
The need to deal with high employee turnover and to provide a high level of service leads care agencies to build an in-app on-boarding process to make the development more efficient and quick. Usually this involves:
- A formal letter welcoming the employee to the company
- New employee checklist
- Personal information form
- Opting out form (the 48hrs working time directive)
- Declaration of pre-booked holidays
- Uniform order form
- Information for company Badge
- Training summary feedback
- Read & sign of appropriate forms
Client services and information
Care agencies want to provide the ideal experience for their clients, maintain a useful information folder for each client, to equip caregivers with the information they need and an easy way to report and initiate action items, therefore they utilize Connecteam to achieve the following:
- Information about the venue of the client, including the address and special entry instructions.
- Task lists to be performed as part of the service for the prospective client throughout the day.
- Useful forms such as creating a grocery list, reimbursement form, opening a maintenance call, etc.
- Emergency contact information.
Transfer company policies to the app
Care agencies often make digital resources available for their teams so they can easily find the information they need in one place. The most common resources usually shared with the teams include:
- Policies and protocols
- Employee handbook
- ‘How To’ guides (electronic equipment usage / login to a web service etc.)
- Code of ethics
- Sexual harassment policy
- Uniform policy.
Human resource needs
HR teams and executives in care agencies leverage Connecteam for automating processes and for better control over workforce related issues:
- Refer a friend makes it easy for the workforce to recommend friends for a position which helps increase their recruitment reach.
- Personal information form for on-boarding new employees such as personal information, contact information, emergency contact, documents such as tax forms and photo ID, etc.
- Updating contact information such as address, name, mobile number, email, bank account information and more.
- Employee satisfaction surveys or performance reviews.
Building professional skills through training
In-app training is used by care agencies to provide all relevant training materials for individuals of the agency – common training practices include both professional and compliance related training:
- Dementia training
- Stoma care training
- First Aid training
- Hoist training
- Abuse Neglect Exploitation (ANE) training
- Sexual harassment training
- Test and quizzes.
For dispatching and managing a service user’s calls, care agencies utilize Connecteam’s job scheduling feature in order to provide all relevant information to their caregiver easily and swiftly:
- Assigning caregivers for services based on different requirements.
- Providing all relevant information including time, address and special instructions.
- Keeping records of when an employee clocked in and out, plus their location.
- Employees can add shift notes with comments and photos if necessary.
- Allowing employees to accept and reject shifts (optional – can be disabled).
Accurate time tracking
When it comes to accurate time tracking and payroll sheets, care agencies rely on Connecteam to make this a smooth process.
- For clocking in and out of shifts with a GPS location stamp.
- Sending push notifications to remind employees to clock in or out.
- Utilizing notes and tags to address specific needs (like filtering by customer or specific dates).
- Exporting payroll sheets, per shift or as a total.
- Viewing current and past timesheets.
- Requesting time off – employees receive an alert the second a request is approved or denied.
Connecteam is a leading all-in-one employee management app with various capabilities designed to help scale your business. Plus, Connecteam’s pricing options are a no-brainer so try your free 14-day trial and feel free to message us with any questions at [email protected].
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