Tough Workforce Challeges? Time to Practice Innovations

Mark Woodka, CEO, OnShift T

here is a unifying commitment senior living providers share with OnShift:

to solve the workforce

challenges facing the industry. Today, there is no greater challenge facing

the industry than building the consistency in staffing needed for high quality resident care and service. This has been extremely diffi- cult with the growing workforce shortage, high turnover rates, and elevated employee burnout levels. However, what I love about working for

this industry is that as new problems arise, so do new solutions. As part of our com- mitment to serve the industry, I wanted to share some of the most effective strategies providers have recently implemented to recruit, hire, and fill difficult shifts.

Rethink hiring process Job candidates are not on the market for very long. Nearly every senior living com- munity has open positions they want to fill. Understanding that speed is a critical component to hiring success, providers are taking a deep look into their hiring process to identify areas that stifle candidate flow. These issues vary from organization to

organization. Some providers have identi- fied bottlenecks stemming from corporate recruiting teams taking an extended amount of time to review and hand off candidates to communities. Other organizations have ex- perienced the opposite, as hiring managers within a community are unable to allocate the daily time needed to review and follow up with applicants.

Reducing time-to-hire This was the case for a large senior living provider who recently restructured its process to expedite hiring by shifting more

responsibility away from community hiring managers to corporate resources. To do this effectively and meet demand,

they doubled the size of their corporate recruitment team. As candidates apply, it is now the corpo-

rate team’s responsibility to conduct inter- views and administer background checks. Their goal is to quickly provide com-

munity hiring managers with at least two pre-vetted and qualified candidates. This has made the selection process easy and fast for community hiring managers. In fact, they report reducing time-to-hire to just 10 days.

Get creative with recruiting Optimizing the hiring process is just one component to be effective in today’s market. Another major challenge is creating a robust and active candidate pipeline. To achieve this, many senior living pro-

viders have extended their recruitment initiatives to engage older adults who have recently retired and may be open to part- time work. Providers have seen success in attracting

new applicants from this population by con- necting with local churches and faith-based groups, non-profit organizations with volun- teer staff, and local NAACP and LGBTQ+ chapters. Additionally, providers are reaching out

to passive job seekers, those who may have previously applied or left on good terms. One provider implemented a day-long hiring outreach campaign, reeling in more than 400 applications within 24 hours. In addition, they also invited 1,200 former employees who had left in good standing to re-apply. This resulted in 12 job offers extended that week.

Offer flexibility A key component to hiring success is pro- viding more scheduling flexibility. Providers are offering greater variety in shift times and lengths to meet the needs of current and prospective employees. In addition, many providers have created internal staffing pools used to fill shifts at neighboring com- munities and empower employees with the ability to easily request shifts. Hiring and staffing successes like these

need to be shared. That’s why I can’t wait for this year’s Argentum Senior Living Ex- ecutive Conference & Expo. I’m eager to discuss additional workforce strategies and introduce the latest innovations within On- Shift’s end-to-end human capital manage- ment software platform that will continue to drive workforce improvements throughout the industry. Please be sure to stop by and say “hi”

if you’re there—OnShift can be found at Booth #822. For more information, see


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