Recruiting Care Staff - HR Blog

Top 10 Tips for Recruiting Care Staff

Recruitment is a key responsibility for any business in any sector. Every company faces the same challenge: How do we get the best possible candidate for each role and for our company as a whole. Facing this challenge and understanding how it affects you and your sector is vital. However, when it comes to recruiting care staff, it means that certain checks or even personality traits need to be looked at. While COVID has made it extremely difficult for the care sector to recruit, we have some useful top tips for you.

 

Recruitment plan

Having a care staff recruitment plan is vital. It can allow you to act strategically rather than reactively, target the right people, with the right skills and values, provide consistency and get the most out of limited resources. If you do not have a recruitment plan in place, or your current plan is not working, it may be wise to get support. As recruitment is such a specific HR task, you may be too close to your business. Having an external company develop your recruitment plan means that you won’t lose the forest for the trees. Companies like Wurkplace help care homes and other businesses assess their needs and apply them holistically to a recruitment plan.

 

Advertising

Advertisements and job descriptions should be written and detailed for each specific role, so you and the applicant know exactly what is expected from them. It is also wise to include what they should expect from you… Do you offer training? Career progression? Employee benefits or assistance programs? You’re not just asking an applicant to sell themselves, it’s also an opportunity to sell yourself as an employer. Think about your Employer Value Proposition.

Take the time to clearly define your values, personal attributes and the requirements you have for a candidate into job adverts. Think about your use of language and tone. The values and personal qualities necessary to effectively perform within the role should be obvious throughout the advertisement. This will help weed out applicants who do not believe they match.

Ensure that it is a true reflection of the reality of the role. Sure, a misleading job advert will help get an applicant through the door, but it will also mean they’ll leave through the same door. An accurate job description is a big factor in employee retention.

 

Attract candidates

You want to stand out from other companies trying to recruit in the care industry and be the most attractive employer. Benefits such as additional holidays or company sick pay may be offered or non-monetary benefits such as a car park space. 75% of vacancies in the care sector over the past 12 months offered training and development. It is important to think about your company, the current staff, the current clients or residents – What are the plusses? Advertise them!

If you can’t think of any plusses, then you need a different kind of support

 

Applicant Screening

Once you have your job adverts out, you will start to receive applicants. If you have an accurate and reflective job advert, then you should receive the kind of applicants you’re looking for. Either way, screening them is important!

Screening can help to narrow candidates down when recruiting care staff. A good tip for the initial stages following an application would be to use personality tests, or a quick questionnaire. This can help to shed more light on the kinds of people that your applicants are and whittle a large group of applicants down to a few to interview.

It is quite common that care homes are often too busy to screen effectively, which has a trickle-down effect on the process. Improper screening leads to unfit employee, leads to employee leaving or being let go, leads to recruitment, leads to improper screening – Soon you have a revolving door of people who do not fit your needs. Outsourcing the screening process can help you focus on your service provision.

 

Interviews

Competency based questions rooted firmly in day-to-day care duties allow you to ask candidates how they would respond in real world situations within a care context.

Have a scoring matrix for every candidate and have more than one person interviewing to avoid bias. Having a score matrix will help you obtain different perspectives.

Think about the type of interview you’re looking to conduct. Single, group, tiered… There are many options available to you, some of which will suit some roles above others.

 

Do your checks

Once the potential candidate(s) have been selected you need to ensure that they are able to work in the care industry. Check if they have a driving license if required for the role and complete a DBS check. You need to perform checks on all relevant qualifications. Usually a recruitment agency will be able to perform this check for you.

 

Work experience

Care staff recruitment does not just have to mean qualified / experienced carers. Opening up your doors to people looking for work experience can be a great way to attract new talent. People studying Health and Social Care or other similar courses or even looking for a different career will be looking at getting some real-life experience in the care home. This not only allows for another pair of hands to help but if they show a true passion and excel in the role, they can then be offered a permanent role.

The UK government has a number of schemes in place to help get young workers and workers in general into roles. Why not start there?

Be sure to complete the relevant risk assessments though!

 

Listen to your team

Working in the care industry is extremely rewarding, however, there can be times where it can be challenging, and team work really prevails. Taking this into account, it is good practice for you to ask your team what traits / roles are needed when recruiting care staff. With high levels of stress and responsibility, your team will be able to tell you what they’re lacking.

Allow anonymous feedback to provide staff an opportunity to say what they really feel. This is an opportunity to get a sense-check on your organisation as well as recruit.

 

Training

No one job is the same, even if someone has years of experience in that particular field then they will still need to be trained on your specific polices, the health and safety and even may refresher courses in certain elements of the role. You should ensure that this training is set up and communicated to the new recruit to ensure that they are aware of what is expected but also, they feel supported.

 

Praise employees

Ensuring that employees are praised for their work and feel supported and appreciated is a key part of recruiting care staff. This is because lower retention rates make it more difficult to maintain high standards of care. Residents find it unsettling when strange faces keep coming in. Having the same staff all the time allows for a greater sense of family, and it can make a big difference.

 

How Wurkplace can help

We here at Wurkplace have a high level of experience in the care sector and in recruitment. We offer a HR consultancy in which we can coach and support you through every stage of the recruitment process. Don’t forget retention… The process doesn’t end with the recruitment, you need to retain staff. That’s why having proper HR can eliminate recruitment costs. With us, you can get access to a vast amount of template documents that can also support you. Talk to us today by using our quick online form, or calling a consultant directly on 0330 400 5490.

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