Building Bridges for Nurse & Caregiver Recruitment

This article first appeared on the Homecare Tech Report.

Everyone is talking about recruitment/staffing and what to do. As our industry faces what could be considered an impending “crisis,” some pioneers are  approaching these challenges as an opportunity to improve infrastructure and efficiencies. Like many things in life, a blanket “crisis” label is causing a scrambling that may be missing the nuances in our current system which are stifling growth and demand.

Value-Driven Engagement For Your Field Staff

One Entrepreneur in Manhattan (and my CEO and Commander-in-Chief) has a new perspective to fix this issue, using the same principles of Demand Induction (learn more about that here). Assaf Shalvi believes that by making the whole process more accessible, we can quickly fix not only  the retention/churn issue facing the industry, but also introduce efficiencies for field staff engagement. In Assaf’s view, CSMs and Schedulers should be focused more on the client experience and less on phone tag.

He explained it to me very plainly when I first began at SWIFT SHIFT.“When you’re selling someone a dream vacation, you don’t start the story by asking them to apply for a visa, get an updated passport, or pack their bags. You present pictures of sunset beaches, gourmet delicacies, and scenic views,” Assaf shared. “By turning the value proposition on its head, SWIFT SHIFT is creating a solution to add meaningful engagements to the recruitment process for nurses and caregivers, offering them value and engaging with them on the channels they prefer – mobile and digital.”

Bridge Salesmen Versus Bridge Builders

My CEO isn’t the first pioneer to address this issue, but he does have a fresh approach. With the warning flags in healthcare waving high, there has also been an outpouring of “solutions” which seem to be more of the same over-architected processes creating additional barriers to engagement. Can it be valuable to use 3rd party recruiters to help find the right talent for your agency? Yes. Could posting on Indeed and other job boards help fulfill your most imminent recruitment needs? Yes. Can re-addressing internal benefits you offer employees decrease the growing churn rates facing home healthcare? Yes. But these solutions are not scalable, sustainable, or savvy enough to solve the breadth of the shortage we are facing.

“If you think that spending the majority of your recruitment budget on job sites and incorporating a ‘spray and pray’ strategy will fix this, then I’ve got a bridge to sell you,” I’ve heard Assaf joke. The principles of Demand Induction and the phenomenon of additional pathways creating further demand, is how he is planning to solve this problem.

When I think of Assaf’s vision, it reminds me of the days of Robert Moses, the Master builder of NYC in 1936. Robert Moses built the Triborough Bridge, not realizing that additional pathways created would give birth to increased traffic into Manhattan. Technology has been creating similar infrastructure with digital infrastructure for years. No need to look further than Uber, AirBnb, Postmates or TaskRabbit to see how efficiencies have created new demand and even new workforces. If technology can convince people to shlepp strangers around in their personal cars for extra income, just imagine what it can accomplish for the home healthcare industry.

Finding New Talent Isn’t the Biggest Problem

Yes, home healthcare needs to find a way to appeal to a new demographic, a new generation and a new workforce. But the biggest opportunity is churn. With $3 billion dollars currently being spent on Home Healthcare Recruitment, it’s staggering that $.53 of every dollar spent is on re-engagement of previous employees. Lack of targeting, inefficiencies in workforce engagement, and barriers to case application and completion are the culprits of this troublesome statistic. Have your eyes widened at these numbers? Read more about the revolving door of recruitment here.

We have some more exciting news coming out next month, so watch this space for our latest solution addressing recruitment.


Assaf Shalvi, CEO and Founder of SWIFT SHIFT, is an entrepreneur passionate about creating infrastructure to empower labor force sectors on the low end of the earning scale. Prior to launching SWIFT SHIFT, Shalvi built, an employee marketplace platform, and worked for MAXIMUS, where he assisted governments in upgrading and streamlining workforce participation programs and policies.

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