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The Importance of Engagement in Resident Retention

Posted by Karen O'Hara

October 20, 2018 8:00:00 AM EDT

resident retentionSenior living communities spend months trying to figure out how to attract new residents. Sales and marketing teams work trying to understand a residents’ needs and how they can offer solutions to those needs. Eventually, the new resident and their family decide that it is time to make the move into a senior living community, putting their trust in the community to take care of their loved one. After a considerable amount of effort by the sales team on the front end, they have successfully attracted a new resident, but what has the rest of the community done to prepare for this move in? It is vital that a senior living community put just as much effort into resident retention as they did in getting seniors into their community.

The staff in your senior living community needs to create an action plan that includes all departments to ensure that a resident feels at home within the first 30 days. This starts with resident engagement; here are a few ways to make that possible:

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Food and Beverage

Have you had a conversation with your new resident to understand their likes and dislikes in regards to meals? Many seniors today place great importance on eating healthy. Does the senior have any dietary restrictions? Some seniors have difficulties feeding themselves, will this be accommodated for in a “no judgment” scenario? Have a conversation with the new resident on day one to prepare them for the dining experience in their new home away from home. If a resident knows what to expect, they won’t be disappointed.

Life Enrichment

Is there a clear understanding of what your community has to offer to the new resident? Make sure all of the amenities and activities are communicated to the resident, this includes fitness centers, group exercise, group trips, or social activities such as a movie night. It is also essential to make sure the resident knows that they are invited to these events. Setting them up with a “buddy” to attend these activities with them can help the new resident feel more included. Some communities make it a habit of inviting the new resident to every activity, which can be more annoying than appealing to some, so plan a strategy based on each individual's personality.

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Maintenance and Housekeeping

Visit with the new resident on their first day and let them know what their housekeeping will be like. Some residents prefer to be in their room while being cleaned, while others don’t mind someone else organizing their space. Additionally, make sure their area feels warm and welcoming before they arrive.

Safety and Security

It is essential that the new resident and their family are aware of the safety and security measures outlined in the community. With certain Silversphere technology, residents are allowed freedom and independence while being passively monitored for their safety. This type of technology helps to ensure that all residents are safe and secure while giving the care staff the ability to communicate instantly, if necessary. Family members can rest assured that their loved one is safe and living freely.

Business Office 

Although this department’s interaction with a new resident may be minimal in comparison to other areas, the last thing you will want after doing such a great job with engagement is to give them “sticker shock.” It may be appropriate to meet with the resident ahead of time to letthem know what to expect and what items they might request that cost extra, such as room service or certain outings. Helping them to understand how to read the bill before they get it will put them more at ease when they receive the first one. 

As senior living community operators, you want to make sure your residents are delighted and feel at home within the first 30 days. By working as a team to ensure resident satisfaction, you will be able to both acquire and retain residents in your community.  

At Silversphere, we are passionate about senior living. For more information on resident retention, download our eBook!

 

Silversphere is the preferred partner in senior living technology. The company helps to deliver outcomes that are important to communities, residents, and families. By implementing various aspects of resident safety, security, customizable emergency systems, and easy-to-access data - Silversphere could be the right choice for your community. Learn more today

Topics: Resident Wellness, Social Interaction

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