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With the UK government’s target of 80% of Care Quality Commission (CQC) registered providers to have digital social care records by March 2024 domiciliary care providers have little over a year to research and implement digital home care management systems.

Digital record keeping will immediately help you on your journey towards compliance with digitised visit monitoring, medicine administration, service delivery audits, risk assessments and care plans.

Real time reporting will provide you with valuable data and insights which not only allow you to predict and avoid issues but also to make important business efficiencies and improvements.

We’re sure if you thought it was easy, you’d have ditched the paperwork a long time ago! So in this article we explore the objections and challenges for embracing a digital future and offer you an insight to how home care providers who have already undertaken the digital journey find it.

No one in my organisation wants to go digital – they feel comfortable with all the paperwork

We know that people are generally very resistant to change and often don’t see how inadequate and inefficient a system is until they actually experience something better. But agencies will find it increasingly difficult to survive and thrive with paper-based systems, particularly with that 2024 deadline looming.

Even with a paper-based system you are still having to input data to spreadsheets to run reports and input sometimes the same data into a different system to enable invoicing and payroll.

With CareLineLive you get a genuinely all-in-one system with single data entry and no need to shoehorn together multiple software programs to deliver tasks such as rostering, invoicing, payroll, call monitoring and care management and planning. You can also integrate other management software such as Sage (accounting and payroll), Xero (accounting and payroll), CM2000 (local authority call monitoring & finance) and more. This seamless integration of all the operational processes a home care agency needs to manage makes all-in-one management software a huge step up in terms of efficiency and effectiveness.

One of our Australian customers, Busi Faulkner confessed to a dislike of filing which was solved by going digital. Instead of filing documents in the office, the team uses the CareLineLive management portal for uploading the documents managers need, with carers only having access to material that is relevant to the client and their care. She says “As a result, people are now more likely to read the information available and this has helped them improve the care they provide for clients.”

We are old school – I’m not sure our team can learn and adapt to a digital system

We’ve designed CareLineLive to be easy-to-use, and we are with you every step of the way from onboarding and training through to friendly ongoing customer support.

Here’s what Johanne Stanley owner at Halifax Care said about moving over to CareLineLive “The stress in the office has significantly decreased, as it’s easier to schedule as people always have their phones on them with the app. We are more efficient – we are now publishing our rotas one day earlier than we used to.”

We’re too busy managing a recruitment crisis to make the change now

Going digital will actually save you time and open up lots of efficiencies. You’ll be able to better streamline visits and find your existing staff members will be able to get more done in the same time. Digital technology removes some stresses from carers’ day to day routines and so this actually helps with retention of staff.

Nichola Potter, Managing Director of Community Nurses Australia said that “We would be a lot less productive without CareLineLive. Time has been saved, communication is easier with carers. Reporting and payroll are much easier.”

Won’t it cost too much?

Of course there is a cost to any software system and it is important that you check any hidden charges as well as the length of your contract. With CareLineLive we simply charge one monthly fee per carer (office-based staff get full access to the software without the need to pay for a licence) and that’s it. Simple, honest pricing. You pay a single fee with no hidden extras – and you also don’t have to pay for any additional roll-outs as you automatically get access for any new roll-outs into the solution.. You don’t even need to update the software – this is one of the benefits of cloud-based software. We also don’t tie customers into lengthy contracts – initially you have to sign up for a 12 month contract after which you’ve got an option to have three month rolling contracts or 12 month ones, with lower pricing for the latter

You will also find huge savings and efficiencies when you move across to CareLineLive that could end up more than covering your costs. But don’t take our word for it. Here is what Karen Jacobs, owner of South Coast Care found: “CareLineLive has improved our business from day one. It’s easy to use and has made us so much more efficient. We are billing an additional 300 hours through extra capacity and our revenue in the first year has increased by 50%.”

John Walter, of the Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust said “From a cost benefits analysis perspective, CareLineLive is an additional cost but conversely, we are making savings because my headcount and mileage costs have decreased. As a result, we have included CareLineLive in our Efficiency Scheme within the trust.”

What about data security?

One of the things that can concern care agencies that store sensitive personal information is cyber security. Cyber attacks are becoming more sophisticated and you will want to ensure that your home care management system is ISO 9001 and 27001 as well as NHS Data Security Protection Toolkit compliant. It should also pass independent cyber security and penetrative testing for vulnerabilities.

We already have home care software but it’s not working well

There are many reasons why your current software may not be performing as well as you would hope.

Some systems are very simple and only do a handful of management functions well so require additional software to deliver the full range of functionality, others can be quite slow and clunky or frustrating to use, some are over complicated and many reportedly have poor customer support once you’ve committed to a lengthy contract.

Some may simply cost too much – the headline price seemed acceptable but with all the add-ons you are paying a sizeable chunk of cash each month for the system and service you receive.

You may also have two or three solutions that need data synchronisation that is time-consuming, not easy and can’t always be done in real-time.

Whatever your situation a new year is an excellent time to be looking at efficiency improvements. Why not make it your new year’s resolution to fully digitise your home care agency and finally ditch the paperwork?

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