3 Strategies to Create a Positive Workplace and Retain Hospice Employees
As healthcare workers have taken on an increased level of responsibility and stress amid the Covid 19 pandemic, it is no surprise that turnover has increased in these positions. According to a recent study, more than 20% of health care workers have considered leaving the field due to the stress brought on by the pandemic and 30% have considered reducing their hours.
The hospice industry is not immune to these trends. In fact, more than 35% of hospice leaders surveyed in a recent poll listed staffing shortages as a top concern for their organization. A news article from Hospice News summed it up below.
“With the aging population growing, hospice and palliative care providers will need to increasingly invest in a shrinking workforce to sustain rising demand for end-of-life and serious illness care. According to a 2018 U.S. Census Bureau report, more than 617 million people were 65 and older in 2015, representing about 9% of the world’s overall population, with projections that this aging population will grow to about 1.6 billion, or 17%, by 2050.”
With employee retention at the forefront of many hospice leader’s minds, we are examining three strategies for happy long-term employees:
- Show Investment in Employees
Everyone likes to be recognized for their hard work, including healthcare staff. Investment can come in many forms and hospices should evaluate how they can work it into their organization.
With the pandemic still at the forefront of many clinicians’ minds, healthcare workers want to see employers create policies that adopt flexibility and protect their safety. Giving employees a mechanism to be heard in the organization can go a long way to making employees feel safe.
Organizations can also show investment through recognition or skills advancement. For example, advancement can mean investing in skills or technology training. Some other ideas for how hospices can incorporate investment into their organization are developing an employee of the month program, negotiating incentives for employees, recognizing employee anniversaries and birthdays, and highlighting employee achievements.
- Invest in Quality Technology and Tools
No one wants to feel unprepared for the job at hand. This is especially true in hospice. Because clinicians are often balancing patient care, documentation, compliance requirements, scheduling, and more, they need an EMR that assists them in their workflow, rather than inhibiting it. Amenities like hospice-specific workflows, charting from mobile devices, and easy medication fills can make a difference in a clinician’s ability to provide quality care.
Another tool that many healthcare workers are looking for their organization to invest in is PPP equipment. PPP equipment is still relevant to many clinicians treating sick patients. Hospices should take these concerns seriously and be sure to communicate information relating to PPP to their staff.
- Create Company Culture
Company culture is a strong motivator across industries. However, in hospice, where many caretakers are out in the field, it can be hard to implement traditional strategies. One way that hospices can foster a strong sense of teamwork is by mastering the IDG team meeting.
When clinicians find it easy to conduct IDG meetings and communicate with others on their IDG team, it fosters a sense of community. Being able to collaborate on patient care without being weighed down by cumbersome paperwork, builds a sense of satisfaction. It also eliminates frustration, allowing employees to focus on the task at hand. When an organization invests in enhancing communication in this way, it shows that the organization is committed to the team.
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