We recently attended CALA 2022 in Palm Springs, an exciting event for senior living professionals. This was our second time attending a CALA conference and we were thrilled to reconnect with professionals throughout the senior living space.
There are a variety of challenges facing the senior living industry during this unique period in history. At the conference, we discussed ways to tackle these challenges and how technology can improve operational efficiencies.
Here are our top senior living takeaways from CALA.
1. Technology adoption helps prevent turnover.
Turnover is one of the biggest challenges facing senior living organizations right now. 80% of senior housing providers report feeling burnt out after nearly three years of working through the pandemic under difficult conditions. The hiring landscape is also very competitive right now, which makes it tricky to retain talent.
At the conference, we discussed many ways that technology could prevent turnover.
Implementing new technology to automate repetitive daily tasks helps the workday run more smoothly for our valuable senior living employees. And, adopting the right technologies not only empower employees to be more productive, but also to stay motivated during challenging times.
2. Occupancy is increasing.
Another huge challenge facing the senior living industry right now is managing high occupancy rates. Occupancy rates stalled during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic as many residents were worried about health risks. Now that vaccines are widely available, many families are now interested in long-term care for their loved ones.
Many senior living organizations have just two or three people on their marketing team to manage this huge influx of leads. This is another area where new technologies can help by finding and processing digital leads automatically and filtering out low-quality leads.
Historically, the senior living industry has been slow to adopt new technologies as they take time and money to implement. However, adopting these new senior living technologies now is an investment in future success, as they will make it easier to keep occupancy rates high.
3. Communication with younger generations.
In order to work with senior living residents and their families, senior living organizations will need to change the way they communicate and engage prospects and new residents.
Gen X and Millennials are helping their older parents find long-term care, and many residents are more tech-savvy themselves. There’s also this idea of the active and fit aging senior community. Residents who are 55 and older aren’t just moving into a retirement community anymore. They are moving into a place that provides a continuum of care.
This is really where the senior living industry is heading. More and more communities are opening that are operating with this idea of a continuum of care.
Senior living operators need to consider different methods of communication to keep residents and their families informed. The goal is to find the best way to capture their attention.
For example, many people prefer text messages to phone calls, especially when communicating with businesses. Implementing a responsive (and automated!) text messaging system ensures that your residents don’t miss key pieces of information.
4. Demand for technology education.
Our final takeaway from the CALA event was that attendees were very interested in adopting new technology for their senior living organizations…they just needed to know where to start.
We noticed that many industry professionals wanted to dive into the “how and why” of each new technology to make the best decisions for their organizations. However, they lack the time to research and learn about new technologies available to them. Additionally, they don’t have enough time to adopt and implement these solutions.
Overall, we need to find technology partners in the industry who are all about empowerment and providing support through training, education, and adoption.
CALA 2022 was an amazing opportunity to connect with others in the senior living space and was full of helpful insights. While there are many challenges facing the senior living industry right now, there are also exciting new innovations on the horizon.
Learn more about how we’ve built solutions to help senior living operators better serve residents while improving their bottom line by ingesting and connecting financial, clinical, engagement, and operational data.