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What Senior Living Communities Are Doing to Increase Hiring

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What Senior Living Communities Are Doing to Increase Hiring

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High turnover rates and understaffed facilities are some of the most impactful weaknesses facing senior living communities today. High labor costs and a competitive job market create a domino effect that may lead to staffing shortages and lower quality of care for residents.

Your marketing strategy does more than attract clients through website development and SEO, it can also be used to draw in long-term employees. When using marketing to find new employees, it’s important to consider how you will retain them long-term by showcasing things like:

  • Access to benefits
  • Job security
  • Ability to do what they do best, like caring for others

Senior Care Worklife 

Staff in senior care facilities undergo highly demanding work. A state of mental, physical, and emotional tiredness may result from taking on this responsibility. 

Senior living community staff are often hired because of their skills in taking care of others, yet communities frequently lack staff, funding, and opportunities for advancements in the company. Workers may look for different jobs due to a competitive job market, and the high demands required of the caretaker. Without opportunities for career growth or access to benefits, employees have a lack of incentive to stick around.

Because of this, operators in the senior living sector struggle with the problem of high turnover rates and understaffed facilities. It’s damaging to workplace culture and reliability in your communities when employees are frequently replaced.

In addition, turnover is expensive. The average cost of hiring a new staff member can reach over $4,000. This high cost can be detrimental to an operator’s business.

Without familiar faces and consistent care, seniors may suffer. Medical issues can go unnoticed, and the risk of unhappiness is much more apparent. Due to the limitations caused by staff shortages, residents run the risk of being abused or neglected.

Today’s Workforce

With 28% of workers under 30, and 37% of workers between 30 and 49, the workforce of today is fairly young. Although women make up about 90% of the workforce, more males, particularly younger men under 30, are taking on these positions.

In senior living communities, nursing and home health aides make up about half of the positions, while registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs) make up the remaining third. 

The percentage of health aides with an associate’s degree or above is 15% for aides and 18% for LPNs. Except for registered nurses, the share of workers with an associate’s degree or above was 65% across all other health care occupations.

According to American Community Survey (ACS) data from 2016, the senior living sector needs to hire and retain an additional 300,000 workers by 2026 to keep up with demand.

Attracting New Employees

So how do you attract new employees who will last? Through marketing! Using marketing as a tool to show prospective employees why they should work with your senior living community will aid in finding staff and keeping them around long term.

The best ways to succeed in your efforts to find new talent include:

  • Highlighting your workplace culture
  • Showing opportunities for growth and success
  • Displaying the benefits of working for your community

Additionally, it’s important to know what employees want. In a survey by GALLUP, the 6 main things that employees want from employers are:

  • A significant increase in income or benefits (64% said “very important”)
  • Greater work-life balance and better personal wellbeing (61%)
  • The ability to do what they do best (58%)
  • Greater stability and job security (53%)
  • COVID-19 vaccination policies that align with individual beliefs (43%)
  • An organization diverse and inclusive of all types of people (42%) 

As discussed, the senior living sector has an immense need for staff, so some operators are even partnering with future high school and university graduates to recruit their employees. This allows them to attract motivated students who are ready to begin their careers and assist them in understanding their career path, possibilities for success, and the pride of holding an adult job.

Find students who have a passion for taking care of others and market to them in a way that highlights the senior living sector as one of nurturing those in need. The potential for career advancement and competitive wages are excellent incentives to bring attention to in your marketing plans.

3 vector images of the hiring process

Retaining New Employees

You’ve put in the work to find someone who fits in with your senior living community culture, now you need to ensure you are providing them with the work-life they need to succeed.

The best way to avoid burnout in your senior living facility is to make sure your team has enough resources and doesn’t become overloaded. Give your employees the tools they need to perform their work effectively.

Prioritize Staff Wellness

Wellness goes beyond only good physical health. Making sure your employees can prioritize their mental health and keep a healthy work-life balance is what staff wellness is all about. This may include:

  • Flexible scheduling
  • Innovative benefits
  • Allowing staff to participate in recreation programs
  • Simplified processes
  • The use of technology to reduce stress and minimize administrative labor so that staff can spend more time with residents.

Offer Opportunities for Advancement and Rewards

Spend money on your workers! It’s worthwhile to invest in your present staff because it costs over $4,000 to hire a new employee. In addition to saving you money compared to hiring and training a new employee, your staff will be happy. 

Listen to Staff and Residents

Your people know their workplace best. Staff and residents are some of the best resources you have to learn pain points and successes of how the community is running.

Streamline Your Onboarding Process

To facilitate successful knowledge transfer for new hires, make sure your senior living community data is readily available. Having all of your vital resident information in one location will make it easier for new hires to get settled in. 

This will not only provide them with the assurance they need to succeed in their new role, but it will also lessen the disruption that high turnover causes for your residents. Your community’s residents will continue to get consistent care that is catered to their specific needs when the onboarding process is interruption-free.

What’s Next

Marketing assists in building a brand that your employees are proud to represent. To discuss marketing tactics that can aid in recruitment and help you gain residents, schedule a demo with us!

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