If anything good has come out of the COVID-19 experience, it's a much-needed acceleration of senior living and long-term care's focus on finding more efficient ways to operate facilities, automate compliance, predict staffing gaps, and reduce costs. Add in an already competitive marketplace, senior care operators who want to differentiate their facility in 2021 are investing in improving safety, amenities, and the use of technology.
Here are some of the biggest trends senior care operators are embracing to drive their organizations forward in 2021.
Time to kick manual paper-based process to the curb
All signs point to digital transformation as the answer to the most pressing challenges facing the post-acute care and senior living industry in 2021. In fact, according to Mckinsey, 92% of companies expect to adopt digital technologies, and that was before COVID-19. Operators who haven’t already taken the first step towards digital can no longer afford to stay timid. This means finding the right technology partner with software that allows you to automate and optimize everything from scheduling to compliance reporting and tracking time and attendance at the click of a button.
Technology that hits the sweet spot of quality care and cost reduction
Spiraling profit margins are forcing operators to search for new ways to cut costs without compromising resident care or the employee experience. Smart operators are investing in automated solutions that harness all the real-time data they need to make the best strategic decisions for their organization in one place: from preventing staffing gaps to mitigating overtime, instant reporting, tracking time and attendance, and monitoring performance.
Mobile takes center stage against employee turnover
With the complications of a multi-generational workforce, COVID-19 protocols, the addition of more part-time staff, and greater regulation, the need to simplify the work environment and make it easy to engage is paramount for workers, management and residents. As our world grows even more mobile and remote, so does your staff, and their expectations. That means providing them the ability to access schedules, pay stubs, and personal information on the go, as well as swap shifts, message managers, and request time off. This flexibility and accessibility not only reduce staff churn through increased engagement but alleviates managers of time-consuming tasks, like manually updating schedules, for more important priorities: your residents.
Keeping up with compliance
COVID-19 has created a new layer of evolving and changing complexity to an already evolving and changing regulatory industry. Keeping up with compliance is no longer humanly possible—and operators looking to get out of the compliance hamster wheel are investing in programs that stay up to date on the numerous reporting requirements, and the data collection and other processes and procedures being used to satisfy those requirements. These operators know that integrating compliance tracking and reporting into their workforce management software is vital to mitigating wasted dollars for false or inaccurate reporting, and it’s not worth risking.
Creating a ladder to success
Operators are not the only ones who need to embrace digital—as the industry continues to get smarter about leveraging technology, employees are going to be the next group to struggle with the impact of digital on their day-to-day lives. To get ahead of this, operators are implementing a culture of continuous talent management in order to build an infrastructure where they can retrain and potentially redeploy talent across the organization. Not only does this help improve employee performance, drive productivity, and increase engagement, but it creates a workforce capable of helping your organization thrive in a digital era.
For a deeper dive on the trends that are transforming senior care in 2021, download our recent industry report.