We delve into how technology is changing training in care homes, and how it can be applied to your workplace.

Technology has revolutionised many industries over the last few years, with care being one of them. Implementing tech into a care home can bring with it a plethora of benefits, including the way it shapes the training process for staff members, along with the onboarding process for new staff in care homes, streamlining and enhancing the process in several ways.

One significant improvement is the introduction of e-learning modules. Steve Reed, Learning and Development Manager at HICA Group, explained how, prior to HICA’s induction, all new employees are assigned these modules: “For individuals who are new to the care sector, these modules provide a valuable insight into the sector before formal training begins. This approach allows new staff to familiarise themselves with essential concepts, protocols and best practices, ensuring a smoother transition into their caregiving roles.

“Additionally, e-learning modules are self-paced, accommodate different learning styles and can be accessed remotely, offering flexibility for staff to complete their training requirements at their convenience. Overall, technology-driven e-learning has made the onboarding process more efficient, informative and accessible for care home staff, ultimately contributing to better-prepared and more confident employees,” added Steve.

HICA’s in-house e-learning platform offers tailored training, aligned with the specific training needs and mandatory requirements of our care teams. Such customised e-learning solutions empower caregivers with the knowledge and skills necessary to provide high-quality care.

Steve explained how these software solutions can be highly effective in a demanding care home environment: “They offer flexibility in training schedules, ensuring that staff can access crucial information at their own pace and convenience. Moreover, they provide a standardised and consistent approach to training, ensuring that all caregivers receive the same high-quality education.”

It seems that it was the pandemic which accelerated the adoption of online courses in the care home sector and, since then, we’ve witnessed several significant shifts in this space. Firstly, there’s been an increased emphasis on remote learning. The pandemic forced the care sector to re-evaluate traditional in-person training methods, which Steve revealed pushed himself and his team to develop and expand their e-learning platform: “This shift has allowed our staff to access essential training remotely, ensuring their safety while continuing their professional development.”

Secondly, there’s been a surge in the use of interactive and engaging e-learning content. Care home employees often have demanding schedules, so it’s crucial that training is not only accessible, but also engaging. Steve and his team have invested in creating dynamic modules, that include video demonstrations, simulations and interactive assessments, to keep staff actively involved in the learning process.

Lastly, the pandemic has highlighted the importance of flexibility in training. Online courses allow employees to learn at their own pace, fitting training around their busy schedules, which is essential. This flexibility ensures that staff can acquire new skills and knowledge while continuing to provide high-quality care to their residents.

Adopting technology for training in care homes can bring both opportunities and challenges. Steve explained that one significant challenge he has come up against is ensuring that all of his staff can comfortably navigate the digital landscape. Not everyone is naturally adept with technology, especially when it comes to e-learning platforms.

Steve added: “To overcome this, we’ve introduced courses in basic digital skills, allowing our staff to develop the necessary tech proficiency at their own pace. These courses cover fundamental skills like logging in to their e-learning accounts, using email and navigating through online resources.”

Another challenge Steve spoke on is maintaining a personal touch in training despite the remote nature of e-learning. He revealed that his team have addressed this by providing dedicated support channels: “Our trainers are readily available to assist with technical issues and answer any questions. Moreover, we encourage peer-to-peer support, where more tech-savvy colleagues mentor those who need assistance.”

Technology in care homes allows for the seamless tracking of progress and completion of certification requirements, ensuring that staff remain compliant with industry regulations. By leveraging these technological tools and platforms, employees can continually improve their skills and qualifications, ultimately enhancing their ability to provide high-quality, person-centred care to residents. This not only benefits their employees, but also contributes to the overall wellbeing and satisfaction of the residents they serve.

There are, of course, potential cost savings and benefits associated with implementing technology-based training in care homes, as it significantly reduces the need for staff to travel to external training locations. This is particularly advantageous for employees who do not drive, as it eliminates the time and expenses associated with using public transport. This also leads to a reduction in travel-related costs for care homes, such as reimbursement for travel expenses. What’s more, digital training materials are reusable, eliminating the need to print and distribute physical resources for each training session. This not only saves on printing and paper costs, but also reduces the environmental impact.

Technology is transforming the training of care home staff by making it more accessible, interactive, data-driven and efficient. These innovations not only enhance the skills and knowledge of your care home workers, but also improve the quality of care provided to your residents.