Webinar Recap: The Holidays are Coming! Is Your Workforce Plan in Place?

end of the year

In our recent webinar with McKnight’s, Sean Carney, VP of Client Services at IntelyCare, Landa Stricklin, MSN, RN, LNHA, CHC, Director of Clinical Consulting at Richter, and Jennifer Richter, President & Founder of Richter, discussed how strategic staffing decisions facilities make during the next two months are critical to a successful end of 2023 and start to 2024. 

You can access the 60-minute presentation recording by filling out the form below. If you don’t have time to watch the full webinar, scroll down for a detailed recap about how to end this year strong and enter 2024 with your best foot forward.

Access the Webinar: The Holidays are Coming! Is Your Workforce Plan in Place?

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How to End 2023 Strong 

As 2023 comes to a close, many long-term care facilities are still struggling with staffing and budgeting. To end the year on solid footing, facility owners and operators should consider these five key things. 

Assess your facility’s performance over this past year. 

Taking a good hard look at what headwinds you faced over the course of the last 10 – 12 months, where you struggled, and where you triumphed, will help you get your bearings as you round the year out. Occupancy rates are rising across the country right now, but the labor market is remaining tight. What lessons can you learn from this past year to help you maintain a healthy census and staff with confidence as the year ends? 

Conduct a SWOT analysis.  

A SWOT analysis – which stands for “strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats” – can be a helpful way to look critically at your performance. Consider these four factors as they relate to your facility and use them as a starting point to develop a strategic plan for 2024. What do you need to do more of? What do you need to do less of? Where can you save money or optimize resources? What stands in the way of achieving these things, and how can you combat those roadblocks? Though it may seem like a headache at first, taking the time out of your busy schedule to develop strategic plans is incredibly important, and using the SWOT method can add structure to your planning efforts. 

Analyze your benchmarks. 

You know that the year is almost over. But do you know if you have been meeting quality benchmarks consistently over the last 10 – 12 months? Do you need to revise or create new strategies to meet those benchmarks? What about your staffing spending relative to your budget? Are you where you want to be at this point in the year, or are you overspending? Now is the time to assess, review, revise, and recommit. It is never too late to try to course correct, and any effort you put into meeting your benchmarks now will help you as you enter Q1 of 2024. 

Make data and technology your friend. 

Data that you can access from your workforce management partners, or from your internal systems, should be utilized to its fullest capacity to help you assess things like: 

  • Percentage of staff represented by contingent staff over the course of the year 
  • Turnover rate among internal staff 
  • Current and projected census 

With proper data collection and analysis measures in place, you should be able to identify where holes may come up and understand what the stress level is within your facility as you end 2023. This in turn will help you be aware of where your financial and human capital resources are so that you don’t stretch either too far as the year ends. 

Communicate with your staff about time off. 

One of the most important things to consider as you approach the end of the year is staff vacation schedules. Communicate with your staff now about what time they need and want off around the holidays. This is also an ideal time to refresh your team on your facility’s time off policy or to create one to go in effect for 2024. As you have these conversations, be empathetic to your nurses, particularly your new hires. They may not have accrued enough days to take time off during the holidays and that will be tough for them. If you can accommodate requested holidays off, do it. And if you can’t, show appreciation for those working on the holidays through gestures like a handwritten note. A little goes a long way. 

How to Enter 2024 with Your Best Foot Forward 

Entering the new year may look a lot like prepping for the end of this year. Here are a few tips for how to put your best foot forward in January. 

  1. Stay in tune with the industry. What is trending among the workforce, the media, and your peers? How can you use that information to improve workflows at your facility? 
  1. Reinforce the concept of planning, and make sure it is interdisciplinary. There shouldn’t be any silos within your facility when it comes to preparing for a successful year. 
  1. Create goals. Everybody within your organization should have goals that support your strategic plans and be rooted in an understanding of what your facility needs and where gaps are. 
  1. Wrap your head around your staffing needs. What skill level do you think you need to meet the acuity mix of your residents this year? Do you have succession plans in place and contingent staff at the ready if you encounter any issues with turnover at your facility

Being mindful of these things will help you start the new year off with confidence.

Looking for a Trusted Partner?  

You can count on IntelyCare to be a partner to you, to treat our nurses and aides well, and to help you provide outstanding patient care. Talk to us today to learn how we can help you safely supplement your workforce


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