Hiring someone to perform in-home senior care is a big step, and it’s important to select the right person for the job.
If you’ve never navigated this process before, it can seem overwhelming. To help you get started, we’ve put together some of the most important considerations to keep in mind when hiring the right in-home caregiver or skilled nurse for your senior loved one.
Make Sure You’ve Described the Job Clearly and Accurately
When you post a job listing for an in-home caregiver, you want to attract people who will be able to succeed in the job. That’s why it’s important to write a job description that covers the qualifications, skills, and personality traits that your ideal candidate should have.
Set a Wage That Is Fair and Based on the Current Market Rate
It can be tempting to offer the lowest possible salary as a way to save money, but this approach will usually end up costing you much more in the long run. Highly qualified caregivers will have multiple work options to choose from, so a salary that is below the market rate will typically only attract less experienced or less qualified applicants. Your loved one’s care is too important to leave to chance, so it’s wise to look up the market rate for caregivers in your area and base the salary on that figure.
Be Rigorous About Screening and Interviewing Applicants
One interview typically is not enough to get a good sense of an applicant’s fit for the job. We recommend interviewing a candidate at least three times before making a final hiring decision in order to get a broad sense of their skills, attitude, and experience. The first interview can be a brief phone screening that touches on the basic job requirements. The second interview is a more in-depth discussion, usually conducted in person, to assess their qualifications. The third interview should also be in person and provide an opportunity for the candidate to meet your senior loved one and see if they are a good fit.
Check the Candidate’s References Before Extending the Offer
No matter how wonderful your caregiving candidate seems, don’t skip this step! Talk to at least two people who have worked with them before and be sure to ask how they performed on the job and if they would hire this person again. You can learn a lot just by asking a few basic questions.
Finding an in-home caregiver is a big task and one that requires careful planning and good judgment. Be thorough and meticulous about finding the right person for the job, since this person will be responsible for the care and comfort of your senior loved one.