Though it may not seem so upon an initial glance, Australia is a nation that is steadily aging as time goes by. Take a look at this little statistic: between 1970 and 1971, only 8 percent of Australians were aged 65 or over. Fast forward three decades or so, and 13 percent of the population were in this age bracket, according to the Australian government's Treasury Department.
That's not the end of the story, however. The annual Intergenerational Report predicts that approximately one-quarter of Australians will be at least 65 years old by the time that 2055 rolls around - a huge jump from the paltry proportion of the early 1970s. Of course, this means that specialist aged care staff are only going to be in bigger demand as time moves on. The aging population is only set to put yet more pressure on our already strained healthcare industry, but also those in the very front line - healthcare workers.
Approximately one-quarter of Australians will be at least 65 years old by the time that 2055 rolls around
Employers in the aged care sector have a big responsibility in not only ensuring that their staff is well-trained, qualified, and up to the task at hand, but also engaged in their work. After all, the growing number of elderly patients in care homes and hospitals across the nation will still require looking after, so it's of paramount importance that the nation's aged care healthcare staff remain focused and engaged.
In such a difficult and demanding profession, though, this is no easy task. Let's take a look at a few ways to help keep your aged care staff engaged, and how this can benefit both employees and patients in the long run.
Take the time for team building
When someone feels as though they are a part of something great, an important cog in the proverbial well-oiled machine, it's almost always a fantastic feeling. This is because it's likely that they'll naturally have more support around them, as well as giving the impression that they are a valued member of the team. The old adage 'two heads are better than one' may not always ring true, but when it comes to aged care professionals, it certainly does.
A collaboration between two, three, or even 10 to 20 people has always been an outstanding way to come up with and nurture fresh ideas. A knock-on effect of this is that a team with their heads together can potentially come up with innovative new ways to go about their work and cut out any parts of the job that could potentially impede their work. Both of these effects can help boost engagement levels, and a well-drilled team will always carry out their work more effectively.
Recognition is key
It doesn't matter whether you're a humble street sweeper, teacher, or aged care worker - recognition of good work is always appreciated and goes far further than you might first think. Not only will employees feel happier in their work knowing that it's recognized, but regular recognition is also an excellent way of keeping them engaged with the tasks at hand. This is because they can carry on in their work safe in the knowledge that it's not all for naught, and that their efforts are well acknowledged.
There is a multitude of ways to show appreciation for your healthcare staff. These can come in the form of simple gift cards or perhaps a bottle of wine, to longer-term rewards, which include pay rises and progression - no one wants to stagnate in their job, and promotion is a great way of keeping staff engaged with their work.
Of course, there are several other ways to keep aged care employees engaged. When you enlist the help of such staff with Australian Health Professionals, you can rest assured that they are skilled, passionate, and engaged in their work, so contact us today to find out more.