24 Jan Why Ongoing Training and Support Is Essential For Carers
By keeping our care staff work skills updated with training and information, we are succeeding to deliver the best quality home care services to our clients.
Carers work in an ever-changing, challenging and sometimes complicated environment. Their work is not easy, and they are usually under time pressure. We can help care staff by providing support and learning opportunities which allow them to keep work skills updated and prepare them for new situations they may face.
Our clients expect that our staff have the knowledge, skills and support to do their jobs. We know this minimum work standard is in place from our recruitment and supervision practices.
Job-seeking? We have an open-door policy and offer self-care support initiatives, one-to-one coaching and supervision, skills update via training & industry events. Talk to us about current vacancies.
We have found that our carers have been directly helped by engaging in further training and learning opportunities. Our Supervisors report back that there is an increase in motivation by these carers to improve in-home care services and share their new knowledge with others in their team.
Better still, our client comments and feedback tell us that staff engaged in further training are motivated to take their jobs to another level! This results in the delivery of the highest quality service possible to their clients. Win-win.
Training, Work, Life Balance
As you can imagine, home carers are more affected than most by the challenge of achieving the holy grail of Work/Life Balance. It is hard for them to find time to keep work skills up to date – they are trying to keep up with the ever-changing health requirements of an ageing population. As training is an additional responsibility on carers, each carers training plan needs to be managed.
A creative approach to training which includes a mix of delivery types gives Applewood flexibility to allow for individual learning situations. It helps us strike the right balance between helping our carers up-skill for the challenges ahead and the delivery of top quality home care services now.
What is a ‘Creative Approach’ to Training?
For Applewood, it means we offer a mix of instructor-led, online, workshop, one-to-one mentoring for training, and, information bulletins. We prefer courses to be certified so that staff efforts are correctly recognized. Some programmes are mandatory to service needs, others optional so carers take part as much as their situation allows.
Currently, we have carers taking extra QQI modules using instructor-led training during the afternoons, which fits into their schedule. Some are finishing off the Major Award, others are adding to qualifications with topics such as Palliative Care or Alzheimer’s and Dementia Awareness.
Others choose online training to achieve the same qualifications or for other speciality areas they are interested in, for example, Supervision in Healthcare. We also carry out our own internal Supervisors programme. This is delivered by our Care Managers to meet the needs of our service.
Staff recently attended conferences about GDPR, Advance Care Planning and are enrolled on Alzheimer’s and Dementia Planning workshops for 2020.
We Issue Regular Information Bulletins
Our care staff already have a high level of care knowledge from the qualifications they’ve already achieved.
Bulletins are an effective way to update staff on emerging trends/issues in healthcare. Most recently, we have covered Infection Control and the current Influenza outbreak. We use them to keep the team up to date with the latest information on:
- Health promotion,
- Medication Management,
- Health and Safety Awareness in the Home,
- Prevention of Elder Abuse,
- Dementia Awareness and Strategies
A Shared Commitment to Learning Gets Results
We have developed a supported, well-resourced and competent team. Quality of care has increased, and we can deliver the high standard of care we would expect ourselves. It also comes with the benefits of increased motivation within teams and very importantly reduced risk.
We cannot achieve this without the dedication and commitment of our staff to work toward a common goal in terms of quality service provision.
Applewood has an exceptionally engaged workforce, and we wish them well in their studies and their careers going forward.
Final Note: Our annual training needs survey will go out over the upcoming weeks to assist with our 2020 training planning, so keep an eye out for that.