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5 Tips For Creating An Awesome Senior Care Onboarding Program

Senior Care Onboarding Program

With just a little over a week working at OnShift, I can already tell it’s going to be a great fit. Starting a new job is never easy – new employees, expectations and technology make the experience challenging, exciting and fun. It’s a culture of innovation, filled with brilliant, cross-functional teams designing new products and technology advancements to better serve our clients and make their lives as simple as possible.

During my first week, I had the privilege of visiting a long-term care center to get some first-hand experience talking to our customers and understanding their concerns and interests – about their job function, company and the industry. It was a great experience to directly hear from our end-users and get their unfiltered thoughts to help us release new functionality, product enhancements and services as we continually expand.

As I got to talk to the staff and applicants, I started to think about the employee onboarding experience. From knowing where and when to show up on the first day to having your training materials properly organized, a lot goes into ensuring your employees have a great onboarding experience. In fact, one study found that “employees who attend a structured onboarding program are 60% more likely to remain with the organization for more than three years.”

With that being said, here are five tips for structuring a successful senior care onboarding program that engages employees from day one:

  1. Prepare the paperwork in advance: Before your new hire comes in for their first day, make sure that you provide them with all of the details, such as time, address, attire, where to park and what to bring. For many candidates, the first day is a whirlwind of information and it’s your job to ensure that candidates have an informative, but non-intimidating workday. Don’t forget to remind your employees to bring in their identification forms to ensure you have everything needed to complete your I-9 and E-Verify requirements and give your employees peace of mind by making it a simple, easy process.

  2. Start with a 30-60-90-day plan: Work with your new hire to develop a 30-60-90-day plan. These plans provide guidance, objectives and milestones to ensure their on path for success. These plans will help your new hire as they transition into their new role, learn your new processes and will provide structure to safeguard against overwhelming your new hire with too much information at once. As you continue to grow, you can standardize your templates based on the roles you hire for most often.

  3. Assign them a mentor and buddy: Find someone in your new employee’s department who is willing to step up to be their buddy. This person can help them with the main responsibilities of their job, while also providing them basic guidance on how to navigate around your community in order to help them be most successful. Make sure to assign a mentor as well, who can coach them and start to identify the high performers among the new hire group. In fact, a LinkedIn study found that “46% of professionals worldwide believe that work friends are important to their overall happiness.” Time to buddy up!

  4. Get the tech down: Workforce technology empowers your employees to do their best work, increases collaboration and improves employee engagement. Whether you’re using OnShift® Schedule™ or OnShift® Engage™ to help with staffing, employee communications or employee engagement, make sure that your employees know how to use your platforms. As schedules change or you decide to send out a quick pulse survey, your staff should know how to use your technology systems to ensure you can meet your end goals.

  5. Schedule check-ins: During the first 90 days, make sure to set time aside for scheduled check-ins and one-on-ones with your new employee. Ask them to share their concerns, successes, challenges and milestones since they’ve been with your organization. Make sure to be fully present, putting away your phone and laptop, to reinforce that they have your full attention.

Your onboarding experience plays a crucial role in attracting, retaining and promoting your employees. With the cost of employee turnover in the senior care industry coming in at around $4.1 billion per year, senior care organizations are paying high premiums when it comes to turnover. And you don’t have to be one of them.

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