Values Based Recruitment – A Hartford Care Case Study

The Sector

The care home sector is suffering a shortage of Registered Managers and we at Bright are working with innovative providers to explore and support how to source leadership talent from other disciplines within the healthcare and social care sector. Skills for Care report in Jan 2016 that of the 25,300 registered CQC services there were 3100 registered manager vacancies, so a significant 12% of services are without leadership and with current CQC reports showing an average of 9% of homes as at either Requires Improvement or Inadequate there are certainly a need for a development and support of existing Registered Managers currently in post.

A Hartford Care manager & resident sitting on a bench

Our Story

In 2011 our established client Hartford Care, a private provider of residential and nursing care homes contacted our team with a requirement for an Interim Home Manager covering maternity leave based in Devon.  Jo Gavin the group’s Brand Director discussed the specification for the role and clearly identified that management experience was of course essential but even with an interim appointment it was important that the manager had to be a match for the company values.

A member of staff at Hartford Care & resident enjoying the library

Value Based Recruitment

This appointment presented a number of challenges location being key, due to number of registered care homes and low population numbers, Devon is historically a tough location for recruiting local people at management level.  However as an interim post and with Hartford’s ability to offer accommodation we could approach candidates UK wide.  As such we were able to approach our own network of interim managers and advertise across all sector sites to gain as much coverage as possible.

Hartford Care staff & residents enjoying the sun

How we did it?

As a key client we have met with both Jo and Sean Gavin we had a great understanding of Hartford and the group’s values care, comfort and companionship. As a family run business they are passionate about what the homes deliver and as a result are focused on how best to achieve personalised care. Integral to this is an absolute commitment to achieving the very best care, support and setting for people with dementia care and Jo has always been clear that continuous professional learning and development of their teams is an essential in achieving their goals.

So when Leah applied for the role we instantly saw a potential match through her chosen career pathway which included qualifying as an Occupational Therapist and working with Skills for Care as a Regional Development Officer, so although not a registered manager her education and career showed a clear alignment of values. Following a detailed conversation with ourselves we felt confident that her outlook and approach to care and leadership would be a match to Hartford Care.

Leah Marie poses for her case study photo

The Results

Leah was successfully appointed to interim home manager and stayed within the group for 11months, she then returned to Skills for Care for a year before returning to Hartford as Group HR, Training and Development Manager. Since returning she has gained her Diploma Level 5 in Health and Social Care Leadership and her CIPD Diploma in Human Resource Management, and in 2016 she was successfully promoted to HR Director for the group.

During her time with the group Leah has worked with the SMT to develop and implement the leadership programme within the group, which has included well received mentor sessions for home managers with the senior managers Sean, Jo, Paul and Will. Stars of the future has also been launched recognising and valuing team members/employees that are inspiring role models. Leadership is not just for Registered Home Managers, this is a skill and attribute that all staff should be able to nurture and demonstrate when delivering care.