March 20, 2024

Why care professionals quit: A challenge faced by care businesses in the UK

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The field of domiciliary care in the UK plays a vital role in providing essential support to care recipients in the comfort of their own homes. Care professionals, dedicated and compassionate individuals, are the backbone of this industry. However, an alarming issue has emerged in recent years - the high turnover rate among care professionals.

In this article, we will delve into the reasons why care professionals quit their roles and provide actionable solutions for owners and registered managers of domiciliary care businesses in the UK to address this pressing challenge.

Overwhelming Workloads and Burnout

Care professionals often find themselves grappling with overwhelming workloads, leading to burnout and exhaustion. This affects the well-being of the care professionals and the quality of care they provide to the care recipients.

This inevitably has implications for your business, high staff turnover due to burnout results in increased recruitment and training costs, and disrupts the continuity of care for your care recipients. Care professional burnout can also, lead to errors in care provision, tarnishing the reputation of the business and above all else, could harm those you care for.

Actionable Point: To tackle this issue, domiciliary care businesses should embrace digital tools like scheduling software. This technology helps in optimising shifts, reducing travel time, distributing workloads efficiently, and ensuring that care professionals get the rest they need. According to John Smith, CEO of CareTech Solutions, "Using scheduling software can significantly reduce staff burnout and improve patient care."

Next Step: Read the following article for a list of the best care management platforms with in-built rostering features, and get some demos booked in!

Inadequate training and career development

Care professionals are eager to expand their skills and advance in their careers. However, many leave their positions due to a lack of training and limited career growth opportunities within the organisation. Without training and development opportunities, people feel they stagnate in work and life, which reduces motivation and job satisfaction. Not offering staff training or career development can lead to a high turnover rate driven by limited career growth which then disrupts the consistency of care, as new hires may not be as experienced or skilled in areas you need. Additionally, this leads to increased recruitment and training expenses.

Actionable Point: Domiciliary care businesses can invest in continuous training and development programs. Digital training platforms can provide convenient access to a wide range of educational resources for care professionals, enabling them to enhance their skills and career prospects. But remember - it’s all good and well providing training to your team, but without allocated time to do it, it’s almost deemed pointless. Look into writing a training policy that outlines how much time per year staff can block off from their rotas to undergo training opportunities.

Next Step: Start by exploring digital training platforms such as Blue Stream Academy or Florence Academy to empower your care team with new skills.

Subpar compensation and limited benefits

Low wages and inadequate benefits packages are a major factor in the high turnover rate among care professionals. High turnover due to compensation issues leads to increased recruitment costs and instability in the care provided to care recipients. It can also harm the business's reputation as a desirable employer.

Actionable Point: It's essential to review and adjust the pay structure and benefits offered to care professionals. Look at your benefits package and look at ways you can expand your offering, this doesn't have to cost the earth! Offering a weekly lunch to an extra day of annual leave per year can make all the difference. Karen Green, an HR Specialist, states, "Competitive compensation packages are key to retaining skilled care workers."

Read: Options for Care provides some reading around what you could include in your employee benefits package to be more competitive.

Struggling with work-life balance

Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is challenging for care professionals, often leading to burnout and staff turnover. As previously mentioned, burnout caused by an unhealthy work-life balance results in absenteeism, reduced productivity, and increased recruitment costs. Care recipients and their family members may also experience and witness inconsistency and dipping levels in care due to frequent staff changes.

Actionable Point: To address this issue, domiciliary care businesses can promote flexible scheduling. Digital rostering tools can help in creating schedules that accommodate the needs of care professionals, enhancing their work-life balance.

Next Step: Investigate digital care management and rostering solutions such as Birdie to offer flexible schedules that promote a healthier work-life balance for your team.

Insufficient Recognition and Appreciation

Care professionals, like any employee in any sector, thrive on recognition and appreciation for their hard work, and a lack of these can drive them to seek employment and validation elsewhere. High turnover due to a lack of recognition affects morale and motivation among care professionals. Again, this can result in increased recruitment and training expenses.

Actionable Point: To retain care professionals, it's vital to implement employee recognition programs. Implementing a performance-based bonus or a ‘carer of the week’ are great starting points.

Read: Improving Employee Morale & Engagement – 6 Simple Ways

The challenges posed by the high turnover rate among care professionals in the domiciliary care industry in the UK are significant. However, there are actionable steps that domiciliary care businesses can take to mitigate these issues. Embracing digital tools and solutions, such as scheduling software, training platforms, and employee recognition schemes, can greatly assist in retaining valuable care professionals.

By addressing these challenges head-on and implementing these strategies, care businesses can ensure continuity of care, reduce recruitment costs, and foster a positive work environment that benefits both care professionals and care recipients alike. It's time to take the necessary steps to create a sustainable and thriving domiciliary care business with a happy and healthy team to do it with!

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