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Thought of the Week: SHRM LI Conference

Home Care: Long Island, Suffolk County

This week we are excited to be attending the Society of Human Resource Management Long Island annual conference.  Alyssa Cottone, Director of Operations, Rebecca Krauss, Care Coordinator, and Laurie Messina, Caregiver Trainer, will be attending the conference on Friday, May 3rd.

The conference features workshops on recruiting, wage and hour compliance, employee engagement, and motivational interviewing, to name a few.  As a company that manages professional caregivers who work in the home of elderly clients, these workshops and the ongoing education from SHRM-LI are very valuable to maintaining and developing employee programs, following state and federal employment laws, and guiding families and caregivers on professional care in the home.

When families look to an agency to hire caregivers in the home, they should be getting more than just a home care worker.  It’s the benefit of having insured and bonded staff, the expertise of the agency’s administrators, employment benefits for the caregivers, proper vetting, screening and training of the caregivers, customer service to troubleshoot any problems that arise, and the coordination of scheduling changes and coverage in the event that the assigned caregiver is absent.  At Family First, your caregiver receives paid time off, annual performance reviews, a caregiver mentor and trainer, ongoing recognition and rewards for excellent work performance, an annual caregiver awards event, holiday bonus, and an employee discounts program.

Professional caregivers are often not offered employment benefits in the same way that traditional jobs offer benefits.  Due to the informal and unsteady nature of the work, caregivers are not able to enjoy benefits such as paid time off and retirement programs.  However, the caregiving field is expected to grow exponentially over the next few years as the aging population continues to grow which experts say will create caregiver shortages.  According to a recent study on the caregiver industry by mycnajobs.com, employers will need to focus on improving wages and benefits, conduct regular performance reviews, and provide mentorship and training to attract and retain professional caregivers.

In the world of caregiving and personal care services at home, the lines of professional boundaries can easily become blurred.  As the home care industry grows and professional caregiving as a career evolves, an agency that prioritizes professional employee relations and excellent customer service is the best solution for now and for the future.

 

Jennifer Benjamin

Jennifer Benjamin has a Masters degree in Business Administration, a graduate Certificate in Geriatric Care Management, is a Certified Dementia Practitioner and is co-founder of Family First Home Companions .With a background in human resources and business management she helped to build a company that is founded on professionalism, integrity, compassion and know-how.

Jennifer has specialized training in Alzheimer’s disease through the Long Island Alzheimer’s Association and the Long Island Alzheimer’s Foundation.She also volunteered her time with the Alzheimer's Disease Assistance Center of Long Island for 3 years by providing cognitive stimulation to an Alzheimer’s patient group.

Jennifer educates the community about elder care and speaks to caregiver support groups, senior centers, and at professional organizations.Topics include home safety, effective strategies for family caregiving, elder care planning, and awareness about elder abuse.