The most vibrant communities actively make the senior living engagement rate a top priority. It enhances the quality of an individual’s life when they can learn a new activity, make a new connection, and engage with the world around them. Bringing seniors together lets them share conversations, interactions, learning, and fun with each other, their caregivers, and their loved ones.
The Scandinavian Living Center in Newton, Massachusetts is a great example. They deliberately redesigned their property with 50% of their community as common space. They chose the layout this way because they wanted the community to participate and have a space that would drive connection. This proved invaluable as the isolation and separation caused by COVID-19 was detrimental to its seniors. That’s why a technology solution like Eversound is able to combat social isolation, build social capital, and enhance human interactions safely with its headphone systems.
Supporting the aging experience through engagement solutions helps residents live a life full of meaning, connection, and joy. These moments of purpose are a concept that seems like common sense, because – what’s life without purpose? That’s why it’s important to show how engagement can make “cents” for senior living communities and deliver real value and ROI.
“The investment is in the community, and the people that benefit are the people living there, the staff, and the neighbors that work there. No one wants to work and live in an outdated building. And no one wants to gather in an institutional setting. […] If one person goes in and connects, it’s a success because they discover that there are people living there — their neighbors are living there.”
– Joe Carella, the CEO of Scandinavian Living Center
The industry agrees: senior engagement technology is needed, and it works
Senior living management has learned that engagement technology has evolved from a “nice to have” to “table stakes” when it comes to fostering a higher level of resident satisfaction and well-being.
Over the last two years, engagement technology solutions supported communities and their residents through staffing gaps, group programming suspensions, budget cuts, safety mandates, and higher operational costs. The value this technology brought to communities is evident through metrics such as relationship-building, resident and family satisfaction, and deeper staff support.
In a March report issued by iN2L, the recorded importance of senior living engagement technology among industry leaders increased for the third straight year:
- Over 80% of executives believe that senior engagement technology provides unique benefits and experiences that help set their community apart.
- 86% of leaders with technology in place, report that it is either “very” or “extremely important,” which represents a 10% increase year over year.
- 65% of leaders report that engagement technology delivers a “clear ROI.”
- 60% of communities report being “less” or “much less able” to engage residents today, as compared to before the pandemic. Respondents note that engagement technology can help – 42% note it can “deliver personalized care” and 24% note it helps foster resident satisfaction and well-being.
- 84% of community leaders agree that getting to know residents on a personal
level and providing engaging activities that support these personalized interests is key, 60% of respondents believe that due to the pandemic, they are less able to do so.
For senior living communities to remain competitive, investments in resident engagement technologies will be important to attract residents and maintain resident and family satisfaction. These investments will be a key differentiator in selecting which community prospects will call home. Implementing engagement technologies can help support the community’s efforts in bolstering its reputation as a desired home for seniors looking to extend their quality of life.
Leading senior living communities are investing in resident engagement technologies that combat social isolation and ensure residents can meaningfully stay connected to one another, the staff, and their loved ones. Senior living communities looking to attract new residents need to prove they have resources and processes in place that not only keep residents safe but connected and happy.
Reimagining ROI… or “ROE” (Return On Engagement)
It’s time to re-think ROI for resident engagement solutions. Hearken, a technology consulting firm specializing in engagement processes, predicts communities across all industries will need to incorporate “ROE”– return-on-engagement as the new model for assessing value. ROE will be about figuring out how to drive growth through care, authentic engagement, and connection with others. ROE requires a community to engage the disengaged residents and activate them through participation during multimodal activities, presentations, and meetings.
So, how do we, as leaders of senior care, convince others that there is a tangible return to investing in engagement solutions? It’s those champions who are prioritizing and investing in the resident and staff experience who are having better business outcomes, such as improved occupancy, better staff and resident retention, and a lot less turnover.
Using Engagement Across the Community to Increase the Bottom Line
Low resident engagement rates can have detrimental effects on the success of a community, including its residents, teams, and inevitably – its bottom line.
Although activity directors probably have the most forward-facing positions within a senior living community, they are by no means the only team members who stand to benefit from adopting an engagement technology solution. Financial, clinical, administrative, and especially, sales and marketing teams can also reap benefits.
Increasing engagement with Eversound’s advanced wireless listening system and activity programming content service can help to elevate your community’s success and is designed to address low resident engagement rates. It offers communities a distinct advantage over their competitors. With it, your sales and marketing teams have a powerful asset to leverage in their marketing strategies to:
- Improve residents’ wellbeing
- Increase family satisfaction scores
- Contribute towards driving occupancy goals
- Increase length of stay
- Help the community with brand awareness
- Improve team efficiency and communication with residents
Sales and marketing directors can use Eversound to showcase their senior living communities’ commitment to technology and accessibility. Don’t worry if budgets are tight! One month’s rent from a net new rental (i.e. from a prospect that can see how your community is different) pays for an entire year of an Eversound membership.
Get in touch to learn how Eversound can help you increase engagement in your community!