COVID-19 has had a tremendous impact on the home healthcare market, posing new challenges for both operators and hiring managers. We are truly in uncharted territory as our industry manages the changing landscape.
The good news is there are signs of increased business as patients shift from assisted living to home health. The bad news is that owners and hiring managers are busier than ever before.
Our hope is that this article will provide some insight into the various challenges facing home healthcare based on what we are hearing from our clients.
An increase in caregiver applicants is straining the hiring process
Since President Trump declared a national emergency, 22 million people have filed for unemployment. The huge influx of unemployment has overwhelmed the government, resulting in delays and shortages of unemployment benefits.
As of April 15, nearly half of the workforce has not received their unemployment benefits (NPR). Recently displaced workers are, therefore, more motivated to get back to work with the uncertainty of their next check.
What we’ve heard from our clients:
- “We are anxious to move forward with implementing Sprockets, as we have had an increase in applications due to the fact that we are still hiring when so many are now unemployed.”
- “We are seeing a HUGE influx of caregiver applicants. It’s hard to even manage.”
Home-health patient loads are growing, increasing demand on caregiver staffing
Home Healthcare Aide is now the third fastest-growing occupation in the U.S., according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This statistic is the result of home-health locations seeing patients in need of less intensive care shifting from hospitals and assisted living facilities to isolation friendly home healthcare. The prevailing thought is this trend will remain in place through 2021 as a societal shift occurs in caregivers.
Below are a collection of hot takes from various industry leaders:
- Kevin Colman, president of Home Healthcare Solutions: “I’m preparing for each day to probably get busier,” he said, predicting home-based care providers to see business peak in the next few weeks. “We are anticipating … patients being discharged [from hospitals quicker] and coming back to their homes or their communities, which [means] a whole separate set of risks.” (Home healthcare news)
- Jennifer Sheets, CEO of Interim Healthcare: “We’re preparing for a surge of patients coming out of the hospital, and we’re already taking care of COVID-19 patients now. Certainly, I think that’s going to increase pretty quickly as we get further down the curve of COVID-19 exposure.” (Home healthcare news)
- Greg Davis, the Owner of Patriot, said his business has surged as patients who need less intensive forms of care are discharged by hospitals trying to free up beds for anticipated COVID-19 cases. (Washington Post)
Employee turnover is increasing for new reasons
Employee turnover has been increasing year-over-year in the home health industry due in large part to the U.S. is in a good economy with a tight labor market. While the economic shift caused by COVID-19 has minimized turnover due to a tight labor market and reduced sourcing issues, it has created some unique challenges.
The following evidence points to new turnover risks owners must mitigate:
- 22% of grandparents provide childcare at no cost, but COVID-19 has slashed this number significantly (Vox).
- The average cost for two young children outside school is more than $20,000 annually (Center for American Progress).
- As childcare centers and schools reopen, teachers are refusing to go back to work further delaying the predicament. In Seattle, teachers have created a union-esque fight against returning to work (Seattle Education Association).
Caregivers make more off unemployment
- The average caregiver makes $22,470 per year, or $1,800 per month before taxes (Glassdoor).
- Based on the state, unemployed workers receive between $300 and $500 per week. Unemployed workers in 29 states are currently getting an extra $600 per week (USA Today). That could result in upwards of $4,400 of potential monthly income plus the $1200 per person and $500 per child (IRS). We are starting to hear that caregivers are opting to file for unemployment and quitting their jobs.
Caregivers are getting sick or are afraid of getting sick
- “Eric Bloniarz of FirstLight Home Care, said some of his employees have begun staying home out of fear of the virus, putting added pressure on those, like Brownlee, who continue to work. To pick up the slack, he has started recruiting new aides from the growing ranks of workers laid off from struggling bars and restaurants over the past two weeks.” (Washington Post)
You want to think you have hired the best employees. You want to think that they wouldn’t steal from your business or deceive you. Unfortunately, that often isn’t the case. In fact, 75% of employees have admitted to stealing at least once from their employer. However, not all theft is monetary. It can also include lost productivity and taking advantage of “free” food in a restaurant setting. This may sound shocking and disappointing, but when you know the signs to look for, you can mitigate the theft.
What breaks do you offer your employees? How well are they monitored? One common theft is time. When an hourly employee takes longer breaks than accounted for or disappears for 30 minutes, they are being paid for not working. A study by the American Society of Employers found that 20% of every dollar earned by a U.S. company is lost to employee time theft.
Internal employee theft is responsible for about 4% of restaurant sales. Tracking where the money is lost can be difficult.
Here are common tactics employees use to pocket change:
- Ringing up a cheaper alcohol than what was used
- Taking from the cash register
- Voiding cash transactions
- Claiming people dined and dashed
3. Food and Inventory
Offering free food to employees on their break seems like a nice perk to offer, right? It is. The problem is when employees take advantage of this and take more free food than what’s really offered. A survey uncovered that internal employee theft is responsible for 75% of inventory shortages.
Examples of food theft:
- Making extra pizzas at the end of the night to take home
- Giving free alcohol to friends and favorite customers
- Snacking on unauthorized foods
It’s not unexpected for employees in this digital age to sneak some peeks at their phones during a shift. However, when this consistently happens, or when they start taking bathroom breaks to do so, it becomes an issue. This lost productivity is costing your restaurant. It can result in unhappy customers and even fewer customers served due to slow table turnaround time.
Overall, employees stealing reaches from time and productivity to money to inventory. Awareness of these issues empowers you to put policies and procedures in place to mitigate these thefts in your restaurant.
Want to hire reliable and trustworthy staff from the start? Learn how Sprockets’ Applicant Matching System can help your restaurant hire staff you can trust and reduce employee turnover.
When an employee quits or you have to let them go, what’s your first concern? Is it how to fill open shifts or how to fill the position? When you lose an employee or let someone go, the result has more of an impact than open shifts. It includes hidden turnover costs.
There is the monetary impact of recruiting and hiring a new employee. In fact, studies have revealed that the average monetary cost to replace just one hourly employee is close to $5,000. What you may not think about when losing an employee are the hidden costs of turnover that take a toll on time and resources. Below are five hidden costs of employee turnover and how they impact your franchise.
When a new employee starts, they must be trained. Usually, the choice of who to train the new hire is your best employee. However, when this is the case, your best employee is taken out of the equation of being fully productive during their shift. This means less productivity for the store and less profit being made.
When you lose an employee, their on-the-job experience is lost along with them. When a new employee starts and struggles to keep up with customer orders, making food, fulfilling their duties, it has an impact on the customer experience. If your franchise is full of new employees, it can have a negative effect on the customer experience. When one customer is lost due to a poor experience, their lifetime value is lost along with them. In fact, Starbucks has determined that its LTV for an average customer is $14,000. They know the importance of treating their customers right and the monetary impact a bad experience has.
A seasoned employee has knowledge of processes and efficiencies that take time to learn. When you lose an employee with this knowledge and have to start over with a new employee, it takes time. During this ramp-up time, productivity is lost. The lost productivity impacts their co-workers, customers, and ultimately your bottom line.
Disgruntled employees love to leave reviews. With a plethora of online review options, from Yelp to Google to social media, these do impact your franchise’s reputation. It impacts whether people will apply in the future and also customers’ viewpoints on your establishment.
When your current employees don’t get to work with their friends anymore or have to pick up extra shifts, it has an impact. Often, if people enjoyed working with someone who is no longer there, they also consider leaving. When people are constantly leaving, it impacts morale and can decrease productivity.
Overall, the impact of employee turnover stretches further than open shifts and money. It has an impact on other employees, customers, and your franchise’s bottom line. Learn how you can hire right the first time and reduce employee turnover with Sprockets’ Applicant Matching System.
Plus, learn about the importance of employee engagement in our recent blog.
At Sprockets, we are working around the clock to help your hiring process. For paid subscribers, we offer a number of tools to reduce turnover, hire a more engaged workforce, and make significantly faster placements. Here are a few reasons why you should consider signing up for a paid account.
Save a Ton of Money in Turnover
According to the SHRM, it costs $4,969 to replace an hourly worker and $14,069 to replace a manager. This includes direct costs like future job postings and indirect costs like reduced morale, lost productivity, and lost knowledge. Sprockets is a no-brainer for any business concerned with their bottom line.
At just $99 per month, you will:
- 5x your investment if you pass on ONE bad hourly hire in 12 months.
- 11x your investment if you pass on ONE bad manager hire in 12 months.
- 60x your investment if you pass on ONE bad hourly hire per month.
- 132x your investment if you pass on ONE bad manager hire per month.
Spend Less Time Reviewing Resumes
With unlimited assessments, our customers typically post the Sprockets survey with their job description. Our technology will tell you which resumes you should review and which candidates simply do not have the mental makeup to work at your company. Your time is valuable. Don’t spend it by prioritizing the wrong resumes.
Say “Goodbye” to One-Off Spreadsheets and “Hello” to Streamlining
Sprockets offers unlimited applicant tracking functionality with paid subscriptions. You’ll be able to assign hiring “stages” to candidates, schedule interviews with candidates, sort your applicant pool, and leave notes for your fellow hiring managers without leaving your dashboard. Hiring. Simplified.
Get a Team Dedicated to Your Hiring Success
No technology is perfectly intuitive. We built Sprockets to be simple, but you may still have questions about your reports as you make hiring decisions. By upgrading your account you will have access to in-app customer support. A live member of our team is just one click away to answer your questions.
Bottom Line, Why Use Recruitment Software?
We understand how hard it is to recruit the right people. Trying to keep up with applications and resumes is a time-consuming and overwhelming process. Recruitment software is a tool that is useful in helping managers, staffing agencies, and recruiters in organizing and filing application information in an easy-to-use interface. This tool offers automated management for daily tasks and administration needs- ultimately saving you time and money.
Spend Less Time Bouncing From Platform to Platform
Throughout the hiring process, you are forced to bounce from tool-to-tool in order to make a hire. Sprockets Boost removes these steps by connecting your Sprockets account with your job boards, applicant tracking systems, and social networks.
You will no longer need to have the Sprockets platform open to get access to their reports. Simply download Sprockets Boost, go to any webpage on the internet, and send out the Sprockets assessment or review current candidates with two simple clicks.
To upgrade, please follow these simple instructions!
We have compiled 10 stats about hospitality employment. Hoteliers are forced to make important decisions with very little time or technology. That’s why we started Sprockets. We wanted to give hotels the tools to make better hiring decisions and make it affordable!
A job is added every 2.5 seconds in the hospitality industry.
53% of hospitality businesses expected their staff numbers to grow in 2018.
54% say hiring and retaining staff is a major challenge.
The hospitality industry adds 3.4 trillion to the global economy every year.
The average hotelier spends 33% of their revenue on staff-related labor costs.
In 2016 the turnover rate in the U.S. hospitality industry topped 70%.
39% of front-of-house employees leave within their first 90 days.
A recent Gallup Poll shows 70% of workers are currently disengaged on the job.
337 Million Jobs worldwide in the hospitality sector by 2023.
1 in 10 employable people would be employed in hospitality and tourism by 2023.
Sprockets helps companies hire more top-performing people. Our assessment discovers the shared characteristics of your best people and sees that information to predict a new hire’s likelihood to succeed in a position before they’re hired. Try Sprockets for your hospitality employment.
In an increasingly global business environment, Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) are critical success factors in terms of recruitment, employee engagement, reducing employee turnover, and work productivity. Building a diverse and inclusive workforce means basing the recruitment and hiring process on the best fit. The best fit includes talent and skills regardless of the candidate’s background, gender, age ethnicity, sexual orientation. It means administering candidate assessments that are unbiased and account for differences in socioeconomic backgrounds.
Aside from the manpower benefits, a diverse workforce enables organizations to reach new and diverse markets. Jeff Humphreys, Director of the Selig Center and author of the Selig Center’s annual Multicultural Economy reports that “in 2012, the $1.2 trillion Hispanic market is larger than the entire economies of all but 13 countries in the world. One Deloitte survey shows that those companies fostering a diverse and inclusive workplaces generate 30% more revenue per employee. The same companies are also 2X more likely to exceed financial targets. In short, diversity is good for business.
5 Ways Technology Promotes Diversity
While most organizations recognize the importance of recruiting a diverse workforce, many experience challenges in establishing a recruitment strategy and program that will attract candidates from diverse groups. The rise of technology in the recruitment and hiring process helps to alleviate some of these challenges.
1.) Software Choice
One strategy is to utilize software that will create diverse-friendly language in job postings. The words and language used in these postings often send a message to candidates in the talent pool that is different from what the company intended. For example, overly aggressive and “masculine” language (e.g. “hunter mentality” or “sales warrior”) tends to deter female applicants. Better to use software that can analyze word choice and exclusionary language and suggest alternative, more neutral verbiage, that will appeal to a larger number of candidates in order to get diverse talent.
2.) Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)
An applicant tracking system makes it possible to collect data regarding the background of candidates and, if necessary, alter sourcing strategy to foster a more diverse pool and ensure compliance with the Equal Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
3.) Artificial Intelligence to Reduce Bias
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is highly beneficial for reducing bias in the recruitment and hiring process. Bias comes into play when a candidate’s background or experiences have an impact on the actions and decisions of the recruiter without their realizing it. For example, a female engineering candidate may receive greater attention from a female hiring manager than a male candidate. Artificial Intelligence-powered recruitment platforms perform an objective analysis of candidate skills, competencies, and knowledge while subtracting out such demographic factors as age, race, ethnicity, or gender.
4.) Social Media Marketing
A survey by Glassdoor found that 67% of candidates consider the diversity of a company an important factor in whether they will accept a job offer. In effect, diversity attracts diversity! In recognition of this, it’s important that all videos, podcasts and other marketing material posted to social media or the company website reflect a diverse and inclusive workforce and positive company culture to the job seekers.
5.) Conduct Diversity Training
Utilize e-learning platforms to implement diversity training to employees across your organization. This fosters an organization-wide value on diversity. Valuing diversity translates into employees becoming the most cost-effective recruitment partners. The use of web-based training is highly cost-effective. It is cost-effective because one presentation can be viewed by employees across the country. For the recruitment staff and talent acquisition leaders, such training can include discussion regarding unconscious bias and how to use a more data-centered approach (such as AI) to foster diversity. Learning Management Systems (LMS) also allow human resource staff to measure the success and outcomes of the training, such as the number of employees who have completed the module(s).
With the global nature of business, it’s imperative that the recruitment and hiring process incorporate a Diversity & Inclusion strategy. Implementing a technology-assisted methodology will foster a more diverse candidate pool. This means your firm competes successfully in terms of talent attraction and customer market share. Learn more about the impact of AI on recruitment in this blog post.
Sprockets helps companies hire more top-performing people. The predictive Applicant Matching System decreases the number of screening interviews you conduct. It also reduces turnover through increased employee engagement. Start predicting employee success with a free account today! No credit card required.