As we continue to tackle the global Coronavirus pandemic, the UK’s home care industry has had to face some of its hardest and most testing challenges.
In March 2020 a call for help was made by the care industry asking for people to come forward to help tackle the additional care needed by our elderly and vulnerable and the staffing shortages due to self-isolation. With over 20,000 volunteers signing up to the National Care Force in the first month alone, and hundreds more continually joining, the sector has seen a surge in workforce numbers.
With such an increase in workload, there is a high demand for systems that can handle quick scheduling arrangements, assist in the recruitment and training of new staff, whilst providing an accurate overview of care visits.
Answering this call, is Unique IQ’s award-winning software, IQ:careplanner. Covering the needs of staff as well as clients, IQ:careplanner brings together information and details from a variety of roles within a home care agency and produces effective and efficient results.
Bringing information together
A care management team can plan and view schedules in one easy to use screen, with the ability to book visits specifying whether they are ad-hoc or recurring, as well as adding tasks for care workers to complete during the visit.
Using IQ:careplanner, staff can also see the number of available hours for each worker on a roster, highlighting any gaps and using the ‘click and drag’ option, quickly resolving any potentially missed visits.
And a recently launched ‘RAG status’ feature is helping care managers to group service users according to level of need, to make contingency planning easier.
As the home care industry sees an increased need for recruitment, knowledge about new carers is important to be collated and used correctly, for example – a fully trained first aider could be assigned to a client known to have high-risk health issues.
Inbuilt within IQ:careplanner is the records management feature, designed to help care management staff manage critical details about carers and clients. Details including carer’s training and qualifications can be tracked, and alerts reminding of expiry and renewal can be sent to a specific team leader or staff member.
Client information such as health status, visit notes, accidents and monitored incidents can all be stored securely within the system and are used to create personalised care plans within IQ:careplanner.
Creating personalised care plans can be a daunting task; with just a few clicks of the mouse in IQ:careplanner, this can be overcome. These personalised care plans can also be shared with ease to field care staff using our mobile app, IQ:timecard MOBILE, helping to save time exchanging care plans every visit and significantly reducing the risk of lost or incorrect information.
These personalised care plans are additionally used within our ‘best match feature’, an element of IQ:careplanner designed to help provide the best level of care, through allocating carers to clients based on needs, preferences and similar interests they may share. With a large number of volunteers coming forward, this is an invaluable tool that helps to keep a personalised touch to the care they provide.
As more staff members and volunteers join home care agencies across the UK, the importance of keeping accurate timesheets and payroll is vital to ensure carers receive a correct wage. Removing the need for paper processes can help to meet these standards. By using IQ:careplanner, the payroll team can gather essential data about the worked and scheduled hours of field care support staff, while creating reports covering aspects such as National Living Wage compliance, holidays and absences.
Cutting out the ‘middle man’ software, IQ:careplanner connects directly with third-party systems such as Sage and QuickBooks, helping to make the change of operations for payroll staff quick and secure.