IntelyCare Spotlights Mike Clericuzio, Vice President of Operations
Mike Clericuzio, VP of Operations
Mike Clericuzio and his team are at the center of the IntelyCare universe – they make sure that our IntelyPros and clients have someone to answer their questions, 24/7. They are also the drivers of quality on our team – the quality of our communication and the quality of our network of IntelyPros hinges on the skill of our Operations team.
We sat down with Mike to help us better understand the immense impact they have on IntelyCare’s success.
Hi Mike – thanks for agreeing to participate in our Spotlight Series.
For anyone who doesn’t quite know what “Operations” actually means, can you walk me through what IntelyCare’s Operations team does?
I oversee the team that interacts with our IntelyPros regularly – they are the ones that make sure IntelyPros’ questions are answered, and we also are the team that drives better service for them.
In the past [IntelyPros] would call in and have long wait times…but we can’t afford that, so we made the investment to expand our operational support. I’m happy to say we don’t have call wait times, and we’ve expanded our availability to 24/7.
We’ve also improved the quality of the network, which was really a two-fold endeavor.
There are situations where we can intervene to help our IntelyPros better understand the needs of our clients – we do a good job helping them to understand their expectations and the responsibility they take on when they pick up a shift.
We also hear IntelyPros’ concerns, whether it’s about something that happened on a shift, about our process, or about our app. We are in a position to take that feedback in and to act on it to improve the services that we provide and, in turn, improve the coverage for our facilities.
It sounds like when we invest in our Operations team, we’re investing in the experience of our IntelyPros and our clients.
Yeah, I feel pretty good that we are moving in that direction. Some of that truthfully is parting ways with IntelyPros who have a hard time meeting our standards – that happens. People work per diem because they need that flexibility, however, my philosophy is if you accept that shift you need to complete it and you need to complete it in a quality way.
That’s why we’ve instituted our rewards program – IntelyLevels – to help IntelyPros understand their actions – positive and negative – impact our facilities and their patients.
It sounds like there is a good deal of nurturing going on as well.
I think we’re trying to be different than other agencies. We’re trying to be very open and available to them. So, when they do call in, I never want them to think they’re a number.
Even when they call in to tell us how we could do better, we listen and have instituted several changes that were actually driven by the feedback from IntelyPros.
IntelyPros have a voice at this company – we respect them, and we need them, and so do our clients. That’s why we’re here.
Have you always worked in Operations?
I’ve been in Operations for over 25 years – in all my roles I’ve always been focused on operations and quality. I know the difference between “fluff” quality – which appeases people for a very short period of time – and the more long-term investment in quality. We have to have the right people that support our clients and our IntelyPros.
I have been doing this for a long time. I have built call teams from scratch and taken them over and created efficiencies that they need to run properly.
For example, we are implementing a new phone service. It’s a service that will help us improve the quality of our day to day interactions. That’s what we’re continuously looking to do – improve.
I agree – the quality of interaction is so important. I think people want the ease of calling someone on the phone, but they don’t want to wait for 30 minutes to talk to someone, and they want to be able to tell that the person on the other end of the phone actually cares about them.
Yes. And we want to make it easier for them, so they can call us up on the phone and speak to a live agent if they wish, or they can have the more self-service approach, where our phone technology can actually answer questions for them – for instance, confirm a shift start time.
What do you find most rewarding about working with IntelyPros?
What I find rewarding is that we can help them manage their day to day lives.
A lot of our IntelyPros have family situations that require flexibility and it’s nice to see them be able to pick up shifts. Not a lot of companies afford that flexibility to their employees – ours can pick up the shifts they can work, and they’re not obligated to work at times that don’t work for them.
It also has given me a new perspective on the immense support that goes into running a facility. It is really eye-opening when you see the level of staffing they need. I give them a lot of credit.
I’ve had a grandmother in a nursing home and I always thought it worked like clockwork – but there’s a lot of moving parts to make that clock tick and seeing that we can help in that is rewarding for me.
Can you offer any advice to a new IntelyPro to help them be successful?
Know what you’re looking for. If you are looking for that flexibility, it’s there. If you’re looking for a full-time job, it’s there, too.
There are no easy roles – this is no exception. It will be difficult caring for patients that don’t always have all their faculties, but it can also be so rewarding. The first time you put a smile on someone’s face is directly caused by the care that you’re giving – and that will carry you through any challenges the rest of the day.
It’s important to know that there can be more stress related to the types of residents you’re caring for, but that’s balanced by so many rewarding aspects as well.
Last question – when you’re not manning the Operations ship, what do you like to do in your spare time?
I like to golf. And I really love spending time with my family – my two kids are in the older teenager years now and fortunately, they still like to spend time with dad! We’re beach bums, so we like to spend time at the beach.
Happy National Skilled Nursing Care Week!
National Skilled Nursing Care Week is sponsored by the American Health Care Association (AHCA) to recognize the challenging, important work that every team member of a skilled nursing facility does day in and day out.
This year’s National Skilled Nursing Care Week (NSNCW) theme is “Live Soulfully” – this week, we celebrate how skilled nursing facilities like yours help our most vulnerable populations continue to live happy, healthy lives. Your residents’ lives don’t simply move on to the next chapter once they come to your facility – they flourish. You ensure that they continue to live soulfully through activities like gardening, cooking and eating good food, singing to music, encouraging them to express themselves through art, reading and discussing good books, but among all that, you make sure they feel cared for, physically, mentally, and emotionally.
All week long, many of you have told us about the awesome ways you have chosen to celebrate your residents and staff – and we’re so happy to hear you have been embracing the theme of living well. As National Skilled Nursing Week comes to a close, we want to make sure we share a heartfelt thank you to you for all you do.
Thank you to the schedulers for juggling schedules to keep your shifts safely staffed.
Thank you to administrators for balancing everything from patient care to food vendor decisions.
Thank you to directors of nursing for ensuring safe, diligent, above and beyond patient care.
Thank you to the secretaries who greet every visitor with a smile.
Thank you to the accountants for balancing the books.
Thank you to the maintenance employees, custodians, and groundskeepers that keep the lights working, halls clean, and lawns trimmed.
Thank you to the activity coordinators for sparking joy and keeping spirits high.
Thank you to physical and occupational therapists that help residents gain back their independence.
Thank you to food service workers that keeps plates and stomachs full, and the dieticians that keep residents eating well.
And thank you to volunteers for giving up your free hours to make a difference.
No matter your role, your impact is a substantial one.
Thank you for making sure that our senior and disabled communities continue to live enjoyable and meaningful lives. We know the job you do is one of the hardest out there and can sometimes feel like a thankless endeavor. We want you to know that your dedication to your residents and your staff does not go unnoticed; we hear it in your voices on every call, and we see it first hand on every visit. While you take time this week to acknowledge your staff and your residents, make sure to take some time to celebrate yourself, too.
Thanks for all you do!
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