At Home Care Direct, the quality of service provision is of paramount importance to us but how do we ensure it is top notch, especially if under our model, we don’t carry out supervisions or assessments?
Our formula for great home care, is too look after our carers and they in turn will look after their clients.
Happy, valued & well rewarded carer = great home care provision
Delving into the detail, for us quality assurance starts at recruitment. We interview, reference check and Garda Vet all carers before they are allowed upload their profiles to our platform. However, we are looking for more than just experience. Most importantly, we are looking for attitude and the desire to take on more responsibility and to advance their careers. We recruit carers who can self-manage and are proactive. We want carers who understand their success on our platform, depends a lot on themselves and their attitude.
Secondly, by facilitating direct contact between families and their prospective carers, we feel each party get an undiluted and true view of each other. This ensures there is less chance of surprises further down the road. By putting the power of decision making in the hands of families and carers directly, rather than a third party, there is higher chance of a good fit.
The third thing we feel drives quality with our model, is that carers are in control and specifically set their own charge rates and availability. What this means is, that all carers are earning what they feel they are worth, rather than having to accept a rate of pay set by someone else. This ensures they are happy in what they are doing and not feeling under appreciated. We see daily how this fosters a change of attitude in carers, where they fully own their work and this in turn reflects itself in a 5 star service for families.
Fourthly, we support carers to be the best they can be by providing resources such as care plan templates, business cards and marketing leaflets. We also provide induction training covering areas such as, customer service and client management skills.
Fifthly, we encourage “Buddy Groups” amongst carers working in the same area. What this does is provide support for holidays, referrals and advice, as well as fostering a sense of community amongst our carers. We will shortly as well be recruiting for what we term "Regional Ambassadors". That is clinical professionals to act as ambassadors for the Home Care Direct concept in their areas, amongst carers, the local HSE and local referrers such as GPs. They will raise awareness of our platform amongst local carers, people new to caring and families looking for support, as well as providing hand holding services to families and carers who start to work through our platform, guiding them through the process.
Finally, we monitor feedback from families and carers, to ensure that the carers on our platform are the best of the best. We don’t tolerate any sub-standard behaviour from carers and we have the power to remove profiles of carers who don’t live up to our standards. Because the rewards on our platform available to carers are significantly better than the sector norms, we don’t have problems getting carers and therefore we don’t have to compromise our standards at the recruitment stage.
At Home Care Direct we feel it’s not supervisions (especially not when they are done on different carers every 3 months!) and form filling, that produces great home care but rather having the same happy well rewarded and motivated carer, week after week. We feel great home care is about human relationships and is delivered by great carers who are enthusiastic about their work, working directly with families, building up mutually dependant relationships, where respect is central.