AI expert Andrew Kith answers all our questions about the challenges faced by home care providers with rostering, and explains how AI can significantly alleviate the burden, save time and cost and bring significant operational efficiencies.
What are the main challenges reported by home care providers?
From my experience, all home care providers face similar issues when it comes to organising their rosters. These are not necessarily specific to the industry, but they are particularly prominent in home care because of the complexity of skills, continuity of care required and industry specific regulations.
- Manual rostering cannot fully account for the necessary complexity
Due to the nature of the home care industry, our clients and prospects all report a high level of complexity when it comes to creating their staff rosters: planners are required to schedule a wide variety of visits types that differ based on qualifications, skills and patient preferences, while taking into account employee EBAs, availability, costs, and travel times. This is extremely complex and time-consuming for schedulers, and managing the process manually is simply not adequate for a growing or large organisation.
Cost and efficiency leakages
Unoptimised, manual rosters always result in cost leakages, most of which we have found in unnecessary travel time and split shift allowances. Excess travel time and long unpaid breaks also reduce staff satisfaction, leading to higher turnover.
- Instantly out of date rosters
Rosters are often out of date soon after they get published, due to changes in bookings, sick employees or fluctuating demand. A significant amount of time is therefore spent organising and reorganising schedules, leading to frustration both for managers and carers. This also, of course, impacts the level of care provided, as the “perfect roster” can never be achieved.
How to create the perfect roster for a home care setting?
Using AI is the best way to optimise schedules. We have found that, through optimised home care rosters, our clients enjoy significant savings. Typically, they report the following averages per location per week:
Saving 4.3% on labour cost
Decreasing travel time by 3.2% and travel distance by and 13.6%
100% compliant rosters
Our Field Service Planning algorithm generates a globally optimised roster that adheres to all Awards and Enterprise Agreements (including overtime rates and other payroll nuances), while taking into account employee availability, patient preferences, and the skills and qualifications required to perform tasks. Different business objectives can be prioritised such as continuity of care for clients and minimising travel time and split shifts for carers, leading to both happier customers and employees.
Is Quinyx different from other AI solutions?
Three key-factors separate Quinyx AI from other solutions.
Most other AI solutions are “out-of-the-box”, with limited setup or configuration support. We work alongside our customers and provide ongoing support to fine-tune the algorithm configuration. This ensures we produce operationally sound schedules that are optimised to meet your individual business priorities.
Most solutions are designed to replace your existing scheduling system, which requires a significant investment of both time and resources. Our AI solutions plug seamlessly into your existing workforce management systems. This means that implementing Quinyx AI won’t disrupt your business or workflows and all your existing data can be utilised to produce optimised rosters.
Last but not least, with all of our clients, we begin the process with a Proof of Value. We use your organisation's own data to identify the areas of the business where our algorithms can bring value, as well as fully quantifying the benefits. This process typically runs for four weeks.
In our latest Proof of Value exercise with a small home care provider of 350 carers, we identified a $700,000 savings by optimising their rosters whilst maintaining operational usability. If you want to find out how much you could save and improve your operations with Quinyx, get in touch with us!
Passionate about AI and how algorithms can be used to make life simpler and better, Andrew has extensive knowledge of the care sector. A valued team member of the leading AI solutions provider Widget Brain, Andrew joined Quinyx as the business was acquired in October 2020.
Reach out to Andrew and discuss your needs, he will no doubt come up with a solution to your rostering issues!