Ditch the spreadsheets and digitise to retain staff in aged and disability care

The Aged Care and Disability Services sectors are facing increased pressure under “a perfect storm” of having to provide quick solutions to staffing issues while dealing with rigorous compliance regulations. Already battling an industry-wide staffing crisis, HR admins in these sector organisations are wasting time on highly manual compliance monitoring processes.

Why going digital will help solve the crisis

Slashing the time spent on manual compliance monitoring means organisations can focus on the overwhelming challenges facing the industry in 2023, and the major one is attracting and retaining the staff required to meet higher minimum staffing ratios to provide better services

Recent analysis by University of Technology Sydney and reported in The Conversation found that Aged Care providers will need to increase total care staffing by around 12.4% by October this year if they intend to reach the Federal Government’s minimum staffing ratios.

There are increasingly more complex issues surrounding stricter compliance and it’s now more important than ever that firms in the aged care and disability space find time-saving tech solutions to these ongoing and evolving challenges. In 2021, the Royal Commission into Aged Care found “the aged care system is well behind other sectors in the use and application of tech and has no clear information and communications technology strategy.

Spreadsheets just don’t cut it any more. Organisations that are still attempting to manage compliance through spreadsheets or a paper-based approach face an impossible task. The biggest problem is human error in data entry but there are other issues. This also creates standalone systems that do not integrate with each other, no centralised source of data, a lack of transparency, and an inability to automate time-consuming manual processes. 

What are the benefits of going digital?

Switching to an end-to-end digital platform for managing workforce compliance in aged care and disability services produces both immediate and long-term benefits. These include:

  • Meeting regulatory requirements – Aged care and disability services are subject to strict regulatory requirements. Compliance with these regulations is necessary to maintain accreditation and funding, and failure to meet these standards can lead to serious consequences for an organisation, including legal action and reputational damage. 
  • Reducing operational overheads – instead of needing to hire a team of additional qualified staff to manage time consuming manual systems, which can be error-prone, it’s possible to develop a “lean team” that can manage compliance simply and securely, freeing them up to secure the best talent.
  • Building trust and confidence – Compliance and screening can help to build trust and confidence among clients, families, and the wider community. When organisations demonstrate that they are committed to providing high-quality care and complying with regulations, it can improve their reputation and help to attract new clients.
  • Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of vulnerable individuals – Aged care and disability services cater to some of the most vulnerable members of society. By improving compliance and screening, it helps to ensure that these individuals receive high-quality care and protection from neglect, abuse, and exploitation.
  • Improving the quality of care – Compliance and screening can help to identify areas of weakness in an organisation’s care provision, enabling them to take steps to improve the quality of care they provide. This can lead to better outcomes for residents and clients, including improved health and wellbeing. 

Latest compliance regulations and what they mean

Among the new compliance regulations in place in the care sectors, The Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission released a draft guidance document in March outlining a series of new responsibilities for approved providers in relation to their governance arrangements. 

The Aged Care Act has been amended to introduce specific provider responsibilities in relation to governance arrangements. In the HR space, this includes ensuring the governing body has responsibility and direct oversight of staff qualifications, skills and capability development.

In the disability services sector, all states and territories have agreed to implement nationally consistent NDIS worker screening. The NDIS Worker Screening Check is an assessment of whether one who works, or seeks to work, with people with disability poses a risk to them.

Firms need to be constantly assessing, monitoring and reviewing its workforce through an effective human resources system – which includes compliance management. Kinatico has developed a reputation as a leading provider of ‘know your people’ tech solutions. 

Kinatico provides real-time workforce compliance management via its core software-as-a-service RegTech solution Cited. By combining certifications and compliance data with business policy and legislative requirements, Cited enables scalable compliance monitoring spanning pre-employment to daily requirements related to geo-location, roles and tasks applicable across a wide range of industries – both domestically and internationally.

Michael Ivanchenko is CEO of Kinatico (ASX: KYP), a leading provider of know your people solutions – comprising pre-employment screening, verification services and workforce compliance management – internationally. Kinatico provides real-time workforce compliance management via its core software-as-a-service RegTech solution Cited. The company also provides a wide range of pre-employment checks via its CVCheck solution.

Michael Ivanchenko, CEO of Kinatico