a woman experiences caregiver burnout

How to Avoid Caregiver Burnout

February 10, 2019 11:00 am

Caregiver burnout is a common issue that affects those who provide long-term support and services.

Although providing care can be emotionally and financially rewarding, it can be tremendously difficult to prioritize taking care of yourself at home when you’re constantly focused on another person at work.

Caregiver burnout not only impacts the people we serve and their quality of life but it also has a direct effect on employee retention. With the average cost of caregiver replacement at more than $2,600, it is essential to use strategies to avoid burnout.

Reduce Paperwork

Caregivers want to spend their time doing what they have been trained to do—providing care to people with disabilities. Paperwork can be time-consuming and boring to complete. The technology available to agencies has expanded tremendously over the last decade. Your agency must have a software program that drastically cuts down on the paperwork required by caregivers.

Consolidate Online Tools

One of the key stressors for caregivers is a lack of access to the resources they need to make their jobs easier. Caregivers will appreciate less paperwork, but the online tools made available to them should also be simplified. Agencies shouldn’t require caregivers to use one program for scheduling and another for messaging. An agency must provide an all-in-one interface with easy navigation and all the tools needed to manage their responsibilities. The online environment should be agency specific and be a place where messages can be exchanged and schedules adjusted. Also, the online program should offer the ability to enter timesheets to optimize billing and payroll accuracy.

Improved Training

An agency has a responsibility to both their caregivers and their clients to provide exceptional training opportunities to both new and current staff members. Investing in training helps caregivers excel in their careers and in turn improves job satisfaction. Well-trained caregivers are more likely to stay with an agency since they feel valued. Trainings send a message that the organization is invested in their success. Trainings expand their skill set and are an asset that caregivers can use to improve their resumes. The good news is trainings don’t have to be outsourced to an expensive third-party provider. Software is available that allows for training modules to be managed directly by an agency. The software will help you guarantee all workers stay in compliance and send alerts when training requirements are set to expire.

Better Communication

Agencies should make themselves available to all members of their team. A caregiver needs to feel comfortable communicating their needs as they arise. Organizations are expected to not only offer an opportunity for feedback from caregivers, but also encourage them to seek out help with addressing any problems or concerns as they arise. Your agency should provide a messaging portal for mass and individual communications. If caregivers feel isolated, creating a forum for them to connect with others will prevent future burnout incidences. Since caregivers are frequently on the go, mobile access must be a part of the employee notification system your organization has in place.

Setting Realistic Boundaries

Setting boundaries benefits an agency, but caregivers too. Overtime is not only costly to an agency—it is also costly to the well being of caregivers. Working frequent overtime shifts are a surefire way to become burned out quickly. Your portal can prevent overtime scheduling without agency authorization. A caregiver may agree to a shift time even if the request is unreasonable because of their eagerness to serve. The software turns this into a non-issue because it can automatically void out the request. Keep in mind caregivers have additional responsibilities outside of work. Agencies should give them the option to fill out an availability template as a way to best accommodate their requests. Encourage breaks or time off as a way to boost caregiver morale.

Direct Care Innovations has the tools your agency needs to take better care of your caregivers. Your staff will appreciate the ease and convenience of having all systems on a single platform. Contact us today to request a demonstration of our products and solutions.

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