Our Fresh Survey Results Can Help You Manage Sales and Improve Operations Amid COVID
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COVID-19 has created a new normal.
As senior living industry professionals, we knew the Coronavirus was going to force us to change the way we conduct sales and improve operations of our communities. While at the onset of the virus, we didn’t know what we didn’t know, we realized that we had to act FAST to keep residents and prospects safe. We have all heard how seniors have been hit hard by the Coronavirus. The Kaiser Family Foundation recently reported that nearly 80% of those who have died of COVID were age 65 or older. The media especially dwelled upon the deaths happening in long-term care communities.
Our clients needed help quickly. They needed data and useful information. They needed resident, staff and prospective resident opinions and perceptions. We addressed the need by surveying thousands of these individuals to see how the Coronavirus impacted their views regarding living at home and joining a senior living community. We surveyed the staff as well.
Retirement DYNAMICS conducted a detailed survey in partnership with Plante Moran Living Forward, a senior living development consulting firm. Surveys were distributed to residents, staff and prospective residents at 70 communities in late June. Completed surveys were received from over 5,000 retirement community residents, staff and prospective residents in 13 states.
Key findings from the surveys:
- 75% of residents agreed that they were “glad to be living in a senior living community during the pandemic,” with 86% affirming they were glad they made the decision to move. Use this information in your sales presentation!
- 61% of senior prospects living at home “felt socially isolated” during shelter-in-place orders. This is helpful information for senior living prospects hesitating about a decision to move!
- 93% of residents felt the community took all precautions to keep them safe. Great public relations for your residents!
In addition, from the survey findings we distilled the feedback into themes that shaped ten specific recommendations, which included:
- Carry out weekly wellness checks on residents: Whether in-person or via phone, weekly wellness checks by staff ensure residents have adequate groceries, supplies and medication.
- Engage residents with small acts of kindness: Many communities surveyed provided whimsical, fun and touching gestures to show residents they cared, from an ice cream parade to puzzles and word searches.
- Utilize a variety of channels to communicate with residents: Effective communications can take a broad range, from email, texts and hard-copy letters delivered to doors to videos, Q&A sessions with leadership or in-person visits.
- Provide technology resources for both residents and staff: Residents asked for communities to provide technical support and lessons as possible solutions to bridge the tech divide while staff felt technology could provide greater support to operations and safety.
- Enhance the dining experience and options: Already a top complaint in senior living communities, dining services faced added scrutiny during the pandemic. Residents called for more varied meal options, additional distance dining options, expanded time – and fewer meals served in non-eco-friendly, single-use serving containers.
- Communicate the community’s COVID-19 plan to prospects: To dispel potential uneasiness prospects have about congregate housing, clearly spell out restrictions and measures in place to both protect residents and keep them active in community life.
We’d love to share more of these results with you. We are committed to the senior living industry and offer this important report to you FREE OF CHARGE today. Just fill out the form on this page to receive your free copy! Then, let us know what you think.