How care homes use digital systems to maintain best practice
With the constant need to balance the books and robust KPIs driving the industry forward, Coolcare takes a look at how care homes are use digital systems to maintain best practice when they’re under severe pressure from infection control – and industry leaders are telling us that leveraging technology to hit KPIs is the key to achieving best practice.
Matt Lowe, CEO of Ideal Care Homes and LNT Group and CoolCare client, believes, “Being able to monitor people’s care needs remotely when you are not able to get into the homes is clearly a big thing to have.” In a hands-on industry that needs people to care for people, it’s been historically difficult to manage operations remotely. However, during the pandemic, using technology to constantly review data has given greater insight into what’s happening on the ground.
Information Is Everything
Meeting your KPIs under extreme pressure requires streamlining to stay on top of the data that needs processed. Al-Karim Kachra, CFO Country Court Care, utilised CoolCare’s reporting systems to great effect during the pandemic, ensuring that standards were maintained. He said, “We had a lot of KPIs, and I would say that the systems we had to pull data made it a lot easier.”
A seamless technology solution leapfrogs lengthy data processing, enabling you to access a true, reliable snapshot in a second, meaning digital systems are integral to maintaining best practice.
Mike Whitehead, Director at Halcyon Care Homes and Tanglewood Care services Ltd “We rely on data for every decision we make” – robust data management is the foundation for both business and care decisions that set the scene for best practice and high-quality care.
In a poll conducted with 53 residential care operators that responded during CoolCare’s July 2020 webinar, more than 1 in 2 believe that the use of technology in business operations has become more important during Covid-19 and are using existing technology more effectively. Almost half (42%) think that technology has had a significant impact and has led them to adopt new technology within their business.
Security Through Accurate Staffing
It’s the care home dichotomy; constantly balancing staff costs against budgets while ensuring fully-compliant staff levels. Often, planned rotas are very different to the eventual reality with staff sickness and self-isolation making things even more difficult to manage. Assessing staffing levels through technology means that you can hit KPIs and balance the books, maintaining high levels of quality care. Reporting shows exactly who is on site at any given moment, who has not yet checked in for their shift and any unexpected staff on duty means you can monitor your staffing situation in real-time.
Balancing the Books
Smart financial management ensures quality care and best practice can be both maintained and delivered as standard. Reporting, using technology, gives you instant access to current spends on a granular level and measures it against previous months’ performance. This long view drives quality planning and forecasting so that you can plan how you will meet KPIs and have everything in place to achieve best practice standards.
Knowing your pipeline status in real-time lets you plan more effectively; you’ll know, at any given moment, your enquiries, your wating list and your incoming fees split by funding type. A clear picture of both income and potential income enables you to make decisions based on occupancy measured against KPIs and income on a per-property level or on a wider group level. Data-driven reporting and decision-making clears the path for achieving best practice care and care management.
Compliance Is Key
CQC ratings are hard won; staying on top of compliance is at the core of all you do. Maintaining training and development across teams is integral to protecting care standards. Technological solutions, like care home management systems, puts you in the picture instantly, with training reports that show completed, booked, overdue or due-to-expire training. As well as maintaining high standards for both compliance and personal development, training reports can be scrutinised during CQC inspections to demonstrate your commitment to delivering best practice.