Cristian Grossmann, CEO and Co-Founder of Beekeeper – a digital workforce management platform – on retaining home care workers through better access to shift schedules…
It’s no secret that the UK care and nursing home industry typically has a higher rate of staff vacancies compared to others. A recent report showed that the vacancy rate in the adult social care sector was 6.6%, higher than the national average of 2.6%. Just as worrying, staff turnover in the adult care sector has climbed to 27.8% and has been steadily increasing since 2012.
Stem the flow of high turnover among your care workers
The industry must stem the flow of high turnover by investing in improving morale amongst employees and increasing retention rates of adult social care workers.
One way to do this is to provide workers with earlier access to shift schedules to help them improve their work/life balance.
Early access to work schedules changes lives
This recent study highlighted how a fluctuating work schedule combined with last-minute shift changes can negatively impact workers. Unpredictable shift patterns create an inability to plan for needed childcare, medical appointments or socialising, as workers simply don’t have enough time to anticipate these needs. This causes employees to feel dissatisfied and stressed and less likely to stay with their job.
The study also found that offering employees access to shift schedules just two weeks in advance made a huge difference in the quality of life for workers.
There’s an app for that
Technology can address the problem of high turnover with an internal communications platform that employees can access via an app or desktop, in which shift schedules are migrated from paper or email into an easy-to-access digital hub.
The result of digitising schedules is that workers have improved access to their shifts, which prevents communication delays typical with the traditional approach to scheduling.
Additionally, internal communication platforms offer home care shift workers the ability to instantly request schedule changes to management, enabling faster response times to requests and improving management’s ability to quickly find cover. This allows employees to have more control over their work schedules, which can dramatically improve overall job satisfaction.
In addition to operational tools such as shift schedules, an internal communications platform like Beekeeper also offers instant access to one-on-one and group messaging, information sharing, surveys, training guides and health and safety information — all of which employees find extremely beneficial.
In our experience, staff retention improves very quickly when employees have a platform that offers easy shift scheduling, access to information, and an immediate way to connect with management.
It’s important to remember that your staff are your best asset and by investing in technology that makes their working life more harmonious, you will retain more talent, and build a happier, more productive workforce.
For more information on improving shift pattern access for care workers, see Beekeeper