One interesting thing we have noticed since we set up Home Care Direct, is that some carers find it difficult to value themselves. They feel unsure of what they are capable of, unsure of charging a fair rate for their work and unsure of how they are seen by clients.
A lot of this lack of self-esteem in themselves, is probably due to the general narrative in the media that caring is a low skill, low value job. The fact that many are paid barely above the minimum wage as well by their employers because the employers are in a position to do so, probably also feeds into this self-depreciation.
Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. Caring is an incredibly skilled job needing people skills, organising skills, communication skills and care skills.
When carers come to us to join our platform, the first thing we notice is many are unsure if they are able to manage their own clients? The fact is many carers don’t realise in their work with traditional providers, how all important their role is and the fact that families are loyal to them and not the provider. Indeed, many carers in their work carryout duties of a care manager and sales person without even realising it.
Secondly, its amazing the number of times carers say to us that they are thinking of charging €14 or €15 an hour. We always say to them, if that is what they are thinking, they are better off staying with their employer. Providers charge roughly between €25 and €27 an hour to families and so if a carer is charging €20 an hour, that’s great value for the family!
In addition, they will be getting the same carer day in and day out, unlike constantly changing carers with many providers, which makes a huge difference for the family.
The average carers are achieving on our platform is €20 an hour but we also have lots of carers getting €25 and even a few getting €30 an hour!
Carers need to understand what a fantastic job the majority of them do and that fantastic work has a value, that maybe some providers aren't prepared to pay, but that families are only too delighted to pay, for the right carer. Families know very well that a happy well-paid carer means a better chance for 5-star service for their loved ones.
Many carers also need to understand that they are well capable of doing more than caring. That they are capable of managing a relationship with a family and that they are capable of taking enquires and selling themselves.
Our platform also helps carers with these new tasks, by providing marketing materials such as leaflets and business cards, by providing aids like template care plans and above all by removing all the hassle of working for yourself by handling invoicing, tax returns and insurance.
The more carers begin to really value themselves and understand what they are capable of, the better for all carers and indeed the better for families!