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How to Create a Senior Home Care Work Agreement

Be specific and avoid misunderstanding

Think about the conflicts you encounter in everyday life, and you’ll recognize the role of details in smooth operations and peaceful negotiations.  This is the foundation of a senior home care work agreement.

As you embark on the critical task of hiring a senior home care employee, you’re busy with interviews, background screening, reference checking and negotiations.  It’s easy to assume that everyone will remember each aspect of the scope of work when the time comes.  But we know, that is a recipe for unintentional confusion and misunderstanding.

A true story

Here is a real life interaction that demonstrates the value of defined work agreements for senior home care.

A senior home care employee was hired to stay with an aging adult through the nighttime hours in case there were bathroom needs that required assistance through the night.  The home had ample bedrooms, and the employer and her children assumed the caregiver would stay upstairs in one of the lovely bedrooms with an intercom in case help was needed.

But the caregiver wanted to sleep in the den, the only room with a television.

She was unaware that often sleeplessness afflicted the senior, and moving to the den in the middle of the night to watch TV was a relaxing activity that often lulled her back to sleep.  But now, if she wanted to do so, she would have to wake the caregiver up and share the space with her.  This undermined the privacy of the aging adult as well as her freedom to move around her own home as she wished.

She fired the caregiver and the family had to start all over with the interview process.  Now they have a work agreement that specifies where the caregiver will sleep.

Sounds simple.  But the absence of these details was a set back for this family.

A work agreement is simply a document that you create that includes all the categories that you as an employer feel are necessary to outline in any detail.  These can be as general as hours and pay rates, but should also include topics that may not be relevant today, but could become important in the future, such as confidentiality agreements.

Learn more about how to construct a useful senior home care work agreement.

Other Resources:

Companionship Care: Minimum Wage and Overtime by State
Overtime Rules for Senior Caregivers
Payroll for Privately Employed Senior Caregivers

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