An unwavering commitment to the job, the ability to swiftly manage call-offs to ensure proper coverage, and being a key contributor to better manager-employee communication in the workplace. These are just a few of the reasons that Erica Gomez of Hobbs Health Care Center was named a 2017 OnShift Scheduler of the Year.
A true testament to the opportunity that exists within senior care, Erica’s 15-year career trajectory took her from CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) to CMA (Certified Medical Assistant) to transportation, and then to her current role, Health Information Coordinator. Which, you guessed it…comes with a side of staffing.
A Day In The Life Of A Health Information Coordinator
Erica is in charge of scheduling over 100 employees at Hobbs Health Care Center, a SavaSeniorCare skilled nursing community in New Mexico.
“My day typically starts with a medical records morning meeting and if I’m not pulled to help with transportation or to work the floor, I’m in my office working through staffing and medical records,” Erica explains.
The hard part, and the one that Erica’s coworkers say she executes so flawlessly, is staying on top of the schedule while juggling all of her other responsibilities.
“I’m always on call—24 hours a day—double checking to see if there are any openings,” she says. “Staffing is so important, and I want to ensure our CNAs have the help they need to do their job right.”
She even comes in on the weekends to make sure the community is properly staffed. And if she does find holes that can’t be filled, she covers the shifts herself.
What She Loves About Her Job
“Everything,” says Erica “I love my relationships with the CNAs and I feel like I can relate to them in so many different ways. They are always willing to help me out, whether it’s picking up a shift, or a split shift. I really respect them because I know how hard it is and I think they return that respect to me.”
In fact, one of Erica’s nominations applauded the excellent relationship she has with the CNAs and credited her with increasing employee morale through better communication using OnShift.
How She Uses OnShift To Simplify Staffing
Prior to using OnShift's staff scheduling software, Hobbs Health Care Center used paper and pen to create the schedule, one month out at a time. “It was pretty messy, especially with logging call-offs, when employees were late – everything was smashed together,” she explains.
She noted that schedule changes could take at least 24 hours to update and filling call-offs took about two hours. But, since bringing OnShift on board, the time it takes to manage the schedule has decreased significantly.
“I’m able to be more organized with OnShift – it’s faster, I’m able to staff better, and it helps me manage overtime. I receive the daily emails and can see who’s going into overtime and make changes as needed.”
She also uses the reports to track employee behavior for policy enforcement. These reports within OnShift clearly and easily identify employees with frequent call-offs or tardy punches and allow management to have proactive conversations with those in violation of the policy and get them back on track.
But the one OnShift feature Erica couldn’t live without is the messaging tool, she says. “I use the app for everything – when I get a call-off, I automatically send a message to my staff. It’s a big plus not having to text everyone individually,” she says. “When we’re short-staffed, my director of nursing and I come together and will use OnShift and send specific messages to get people in the building.”
Pro Tip From The Superstar Scheduler Herself
Being the one in control of other peoples’ schedules has its challenges, and that’s why Erica urges schedulers to always show respect for employees.
“Show your staff that you appreciate them. They work hard!” she says. “And when you show them you appreciate them, they’ll work hard for you in return and be more willing to help you out.”
Who She’d Like To Thank For The Award
Erica says she owes much of her success to her team members. “I appreciate my whole team I couldn’t be where I’m at without the support of my team. Big shout out to the CNAs and nurses for their hard work!”
From all of us at OnShift, congratulations on being named a Scheduler of the Year, Erica. Keep up the great work!
1Erica celebrates being named an OnShift Scheduler of the Year with her colleagues.
Want more tips for successful scheduling in senior care? Download The Executive's Guide to Staffing Best Practices today.