This industry knew we were going to face staff shortages as the baby boomers continue aging and the need for home and community based services increased. Many of us were staffed well at that time. We weren’t “worried” in that moment. Fast forward to 15 years later and we now see the effects and many are scrambling to have enough people to meet patient needs. When you think of recruitment and retention, you probably aren’t thinking about your exit interviews, but you really need to look a little deeper.
Why The Exit Interview?
When you think of your exit interviews, you usually get one of three things. If it is an anticipated exit such as relocation or retirement, then you don’t get new information. If someone is disgruntled, then you hear absolutely everything that was, is, or potentially could be an issue in the agency. Finally, if someone just wants to change jobs, then the information is often demographic in nature as the employee does not want to affect a reference from the agency. Sound familiar? So, you need to really dig into what information you need from the staff who is terminating employment. Here are some things to consider:
Sit down For exit interviews. This is something often avoided with disgruntled employees, but you can get really good information when you take the time. We understand there are certain times the sit-down approach isn’t appropriate due to the circumstance, but it should be the exception and not the rule. You may hear operational issues that are correctable. You may find out other employees are looking elsewhere when you did not realize it. This gives an opportunity to make changes and retain employees instead of advertise for new ones.
Look hard at the actual exit questions. The person doing the sit-down should normally be Human Resources or someone neutral for the interaction. Direct supervision is often in charge of the task and it is more difficult if the employee has issues with supervision. Do you ask what you really need? Is money really an issue? Is the benefits package your problem? Does your exit address patient care (yes, this is huge)? There should be a segue in your questions allowing the interviewer to transition to issues with patient care. Clinical staff go to school to provide care. If you don’t have a system in place that allows them to do it well, then clinical staff is set up to fail. Employee satisfaction is poor and this leads to turnover. This is one we commonly see in agencies where we consult the issue of high turnover. So, it becomes time to really look at your process to make a change.
Consider Fresh Eyes To Help With Change:
At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we can help with operational and clinical change to promote excellence while helping your staff maintain a cohesive team. Call us today at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see how we can help you achieve the recruitment and retention goals you desire.