The Pursuit of Happiness, Health, and Efficiencies for Nurses and Caregivers
Certain truths are sacred and undeniable. A man or woman that does not have the freedom and opportunity to pursue satisfaction and ultimately happiness, is one whose spirit isn’t free.
I have dedicated my entire career to helping people find better work. From my time working with the National Employment Services for the Israeli government, to develop programs to help the unemployed get their first jobs and build a meaningful career, I have concluded that giving people the power to control their own destiny can transform lives, families, and ultimately communities.
The most important thing for anyone’s happiness, is having the sense that you’re not a victim of circumstance. Even if you were born into challenging situations, you should still have the opportunity to earn a living that will allow you to provide for your family and be a contributing part of society. In my experience, the feeling of independence and self-sufficiency, the ability to provide for yourself and your loved ones, can make the difference between a spirit that is broken and a spirit that is full of purpose and joy. Perhaps this emotional element of gainful employment is even more valuable than the financial aspects of work.
The desire of a parent to provide security and stability is engrained in our genes. As human beings this has helped us survive throughout history. I feel horrible imagining a situation where I am not able to provide for my 5 year old and my newborn son. However many parents deal with financial instability, uncertainty and have to say “no” to their children daily because of unstable employment that doesn’t pay enough. No, you can’t have an ice cream, we can’t go on holiday, you can’t have these new shoes, we can’t buy this toy…
Looking back at the crisis in 2008, ten years afterwards, the bankers have recovered. They’re fine. Yes, maybe their bonuses are a bit smaller, but they have their jobs and the banking industry has revamped. Yet, many people around the country that used to have stable jobs and incomes that allowed them to live with dignity will never be the same again. They now have contracts with no guaranteed hours, no healthcare benefits, and many had their earnings reduced. Workers’ bargaining power was crushed.
We’ve left more than 30 million people in the U.S. behind. Salaries are not growing, and people work two and three jobs to make ends meet, and it’s hard to find those standing up to make a change. I hope that at SWIFT SHIFT we can make a difference, and use technology to help Home Healthcare employees have more control over their lives, their earnings, and their time.
This very honorable sector of our workforce, stands in the gap for our loved ones at the most vulnerable life moments, yet they are oftentimes scrambling to make ends meet or have any real control over their work life. Many of them work for multiple agencies be able to find work that doesn’t require them to travel far from home and spend time and money on non-paying work activity. They have to figure out how to find cases that start on the day after their current case ends or lose days of work in between cases as the agencies don’t have the ability to pay for a “bench time”.
At SWIFT SHIFT, we created a way for them to open an app, look at available cases from great companies, that are in their geographic proximity. Clinicians can filter these jobs based on their needs, go and work, and get paid at the end of the day, instead of waiting a week. I want to empower these workers to build a profile, and ultimately build a career. By filtering jobs according to a specific need, whether it be pediatrics, geriatrics, dementia patients or even hospice, they can improve their skills and build a personal brand within SWIFT SHIFT. All of us face moments in life where we are dependent on others, and I want to improve the experience for both the end client and the caregiver. At SWIFT SHIFT, our goal is to transform this experience to create predictability, trust, and upward mobility. This experience will not only impact the health care organizations scrambling to answer the nurse shortage crisis, the caregiver and nurse so deserving of predictability and stability, but ultimately the clients and their families. If we can create better experiences in these vulnerable moments, we have succeeded.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
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 Jobinasecond.com, an employee marketplace platform, and worked for MAXIMUS, where he assisted governments in upgrading and streamlining workforce participation programs and policies.