Collecting and making use of data in your senior care practices can be good for a number of compelling reasons:
1. It helps you understand caregiver’s strengths better.
Every caregiver who works for you is unique. Recognizing their particular strengths and weaknesses can help you assign them the roles they’ll perform best. If one of your employees is especially good with people with Alzheimer’s while another possesses the physical strength to more comfortably move patients who need physical help, then making sure they’re each assigned tasks working with the patients who can most benefit from those skills just makes sense. Data that tracks health outcomes and patient satisfaction when specific employees are teamed up with different seniors in your care will help you better see those strengths.
2. It helps you understand individual needs better.
If your company cares for a large number of seniors, staying on top of the particular conditions of each patient and understanding over a long period of time what types of care work best for them can be tricky – especially if the staff who work with them directly changes over time. Data makes the process easier. You can track over time which activities, health treatments and tactics produce the best results for each individual. Once you can better see what works for each individual in your care, you can easily provide that information to every caregiver who works with them and ensure that they receive the highest level of care each day, every time.
3. It helps you see what works best for your business.
Understanding each senior in your care on a personal level is important, but data has the extra benefit of helping you gain insights into the larger trends in what works and doesn’t in your facilities. If offering tai chi classes consistently lead to improved health outcomes, then you may have trouble figuring that out based on anecdotal evidence, but will have an easier time seeing the relationship between the two things with the help of data.
4. It helps you run your business more efficiently and make a dollar go further.
In addition to spotting the things you try that improve outcomes, data can also help you look for ways improve how efficiently your business is run. If there are initiatives or products you’ve invested in that don’t prove to be worth the cost, your data will make it easier to identify those and cut them out of the budget in the future so you can spend more on the initiatives that are working.
5. It helps you understand the needs and priorities of your residents better, so you can build out your business to better serve them.
In senior care, there’s often a disconnect between the decision makers and the seniors affected by those decisions. As hard as you may try, if you’re basing decisions on how a facility or in-home care business is run on assumptions you’ve made about what’s working or could work, you may be guessing wrong. Data that tracks what’s really happening and what residents are really thinking and feeling can bridge any disconnect that exists and enable you to confidently make decisions based on knowledge rather than just intuition.