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A Workforce Initiative That Increased Recruitment and Retention Across Agencies

The Opportunity

By working directly with home care agencies, we can improve the recruitment, training, and retention of a skilled home care workforce.

Our Partners

PHI worked with three licensed home care agencies affiliated with the UJA-Federation of New York: Best Choice Home Health Care, Home Assistance Personnel Inc., and Selfhelp Home Care Services.

What We Did

PHI assisted partner agencies in implementing the Homecare Aide Workforce Initiative (HAWI), which included five core components: targeted recruitment and screening procedures; a minimum 120 hours of PHI’s customized training using a train-the trainer model; peer mentoring for home health aides and coaching for supervisors; and supportive services and case management for trainees and new hires.

Who Was Involved

From 2013 to 2014, 599 trainees enrolled in the program and 502 graduated.

The Results

100 percent of graduates reported that the training was excellent (75 percent), very good, or good. Graduates also responded positively about their classroom experiences and their confidence in providing client care. After three months, the average retention rate of HAWI graduates was 88 percent , and more than 90 percent reported they were very satisfied (62 percent) or satisfied in their new jobs. Controlling for age and weekly hours, HAWI graduates were more than twice as likely to remain in their jobs at three months and 64 percent more likely to remain at six months, compared to home care aides hired before the training was offered.

Lessons Learned

The evaluation concluded that the HAWI training model—including the customized curriculum, teaching methods, and technical assistance with implementation—is suitable for broad replication. Creating a centralized training delivery system with options for customization by individual employers may help reduce costs in the future, thereby enhancing the feasibility and sustainability of the HAWI model.

“We believe that a logical chain of association can be traced from the HAWI model … to the satisfaction, confidence and expectations of the training graduates [and] the superior three- and six-month retention rates of HAWI new hires.” – HAWI evaluation

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