Smart Staffing

By on Dec 30, 2021 in Senior Living

In the age of staffing shortages, senior living providers need creative approaches to attract and retain employees. And we’ve seen some effective strategies this year. But our newest discovery is from Yardi client Aegis Living, who’s launching a standalone agency focused solely on staffing.

Meet Aegis Staffing.

Smart staffing by Aegis

In creating Aegis Staffing, Aegis Living is bringing originality and resourcefulness to the staffing crisis. This Washington-based provider will pilot the new, in-house agency for 12 to 18 months starting in January.

Initially, the agency will focus on staffing improvements at Aegis’ Seattle communities, but CEO Dwayne Clark isn’t stopping there. In an interview with Senior Housing News (SHN), Clark says there may be opportunities to expand the service to other areas — and companies — down the road.

In developing the new agency, Aegis is doing a full overhaul of the staffing philosophy they’ve followed for years. This entailed hiring full-time workers at competitive wage rates, offering time off and providing additional perks. But given the latest shifts in staffing, employees have new expectations related to work-life balance.

And that’s what led Clark to take action. Aegis Staffing seeks to recruit workers and incentivize staff members in a whole new way.

Attracting a new workforce

While Aegis already employs seasoned caregivers, they won’t draw from their own workforce to staff the new agency. Instead, the company will recruit employees from outside agencies. They’re also widening their pool of considered applicants to include recent refugees, retired military personnel and older adults.

“That’s a workforce that we haven’t been exposed to,” Clark told SHN.

Aegis plans to incentivize with a high hourly rate — one that’s competitive to staffing agencies where prospective employees currently work.  

Although the staffing agency isn’t up to speed yet, Aegis is already working on their hiring efforts and finding success. In summer of this year, the company was facing 450 vacant positions whereas now, they’re down to 250.

Rising occupancy trends

Staffing isn’t the only challenge facing senior living. Occupancy has been tested throughout the pandemic, but for Aegis, occupancy is currently on the rise.

After dropping from 93% to below 82% over the course of 2020 and 2021, the company has rebounded to an average occupancy of 88%. While Clark emphasizes the company isn’t back to normal, he explains that Aegis is seeing huge traffic, particularly in their newest communities.

Looking ahead

We know the staffing crisis is challenging operators everywhere. But it’s also driving companies to forge new strategies, just like those piloted by Aegis Living. Read the full article on Aegis Staffing in Senior Housing News to learn more.

Curious how we support senior living providers with our single connected solution? Check out our Senior Living Suite infographic then get in touch.