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Familiarity with Senior Living Linked to Industry Career Interest

November 1, 2016 | James Balda


Interest in a career in the senior living industry is closely and directly linked with awareness and familiarity with senior living, according to the results of a new survey published by Argentum and conducted by national polling firm ORC International.

Two-thirds of respondents who had firsthand experience with senior living would recommend it for a family member who needed assistance, while one in three without that experience would do so, according to the findings that were released at the Argentum Workforce Development Symposium sponsored by OnShift at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, on October 25.

Would You Recommend Family Member.jpgFamiliarity with senior living also clearly influences expectations about specific aspects of working in the industry. Respondents with firsthand experience consistently responded differently about various factors relating to day to day job satisfaction as well as broader career-oriented issues.

Familiarity with senior living influences career interestOther key findings:

  • All respondents cited fair pay for work and a benefits package as an important job satisfaction factor when considering a career.
  • Millennials seek opportunities for career advancement while members of Generation X emphasize flexibility.
  • Baby boomers were significantly more likely to place importance on fair pay, benefits, feeling of personal accomplishment, being recognized as an individual, chance to use skills and feeling proud of the company.
  • Respondents also offered comments about what they see as the primary challenges and benefits they associate with working in the senior living. 54 percent of respondents see interacting with residents as a benefit while 40 percent see it as a challenge.
  • 24 percent said helping people in need was a benefit.
  • 11 percent said dealing with death is a challenge while 10 percent cited emotional strain as a challenge.
The survey results reveal that successful workforce development in senior living will require an effective communications strategy to raise awareness and create familiarity with what senior living is and what it offers, especially among the youngest cohorts entering the workforce. The full report, sponsored by OnShift, is available to Argentum members for free and to nonmembers for a fee.

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About James Balda

James Balda is a guest author for OnShift’s blog and the President and CEO of Argentum, the largest national association exclusively dedicated to senior living communities and the seniors and families they serve.

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