Accredited online courses can make all the difference when you are looking for a competitive advantage in the care industry.
The pressures of time and squeezed resources mean that there is often little opportunity to send staff en-masse to a physical course.
Poorly-managed time can result in wasted days or even weeks, sending your profitability plummeting.
Thankfully, the flexibility of distance learning can help solve this issue.
High-speed broadband and widespread 4G mobile data have made it much simpler for staff to take on home based care training, without the need to cut into the work day and suffer productivity losses.
Why train online?
Caring for people means workers will often travel between a large variety of sites, homes and workplaces, all the while maintaining a spread of distinct skills.
If you want to be able to guarantee that a constant number of workers in any one location have the right skillset, then home-based care training can take that pressure off your shoulders.
Face-to-face training has its advantages, but cheap online courses can do the same job of upskilling staff and maintaining these complex knowledge bases without interrupting workflow.
Providers also have a requirement to fulfil a long laundry list of stringent statutory obligations. And the skills and qualifications held by your staff can vary greatly even among close-knit teams, which makes rostering and time management more complex.
When staff take up care courses online, studies can be completed in a matter of hours, rather than days.
Training materials like videos or checklists are often supplied for staff to download and take home, improving the longevity of the learning experience and improving value for money.
Online care courses can help to not only upskill junior staff, making them more useful in the long run, they can also help senior staff and management to maintain the knowledge they have gained through experience, and to keep on top of the vast swathes of regulations and rules necessary to operate within the law and provide a great experience for service users. The care environment is constantly changing, the law changes with it, and even the most experienced care providers need refreshers.
What the experts say
Age UK’s April 2018 report into Later Life in the UK found that only 36% of people aged over 50 are confident that older people receiving care, such as help with getting dressed or washing, are treated with dignity and respect.
This perception can have a huge impact on your company’s bottom line. And those that invest in high-quality care courses for their staff can take advantage.
The combined care market for older people is estimated to be in the region of £22.2 billion, and yet nearly 1.2 million older people don’t receive the help they need with essential activities. This figure rises to 1.5 million when everyday tasks like shopping and managing medication are taken into account.
These findings are backed up by the Care Quality Commission’s 2018 report into adult social care, looking at data from 2014 to 2017. Over the course of 33,000 investigations, inspectors found that nearly 20% of services required improvement, while 343 locations were rated as inadequate.
92% of respondents to the CQC report told inspectors that the care they received was good. Just 3% said their care had been outstanding.
So while it is clear that for the most part, care staff are passionate, responsible and dedicated, there is still plenty of room for improvement across the board.
How to capitalise
Accredited online courses can make all the difference, marking out services that are not only well-led from the top, but those that have strong principles enacted by staff who are putting in the hard yards of caring day to day.