Going digital
Apr 5, 2023

A care home manager’s guide: the benefits of moving from paper to digital

Moving from pen and paper note taking to a digital system doesn’t need to be daunting. Our guide for care home managers shows you how.

Digitising essential care processes to provide better outcomes for patients

Most care managers have a common goal, whether in charge of a small, independent residential home or managing multiple sites across various locations: to get the best staff to deliver the best care. 

Making every day easier for your staff is well within reach: through simpler care plans, more streamlined processes and personal and professional development. The answer? Switching to digital from paper – and it isn’t as expensive as you might think. You may even be entitled to funding to help you get started. And ultimately, the value of adopting a new system goes far beyond the impact on your bottom line.

Urgency vs autonomy

The government is aiming for 80% of CQC-registered care providers to have digital social care records by March 2024, but forward-thinking care service managers have already started to reap the benefits of going paperless.

Within the care sector, the idea of the digital switch is welcomed. However, when it comes to implementation, each care facility encounters its own challenges. Care home managers may find that while they want to go digital – and they know that digitisation will save time – they don’t have the time to thoroughly research the best approach, let alone implement the switchover.

The shift in mindset required is from ‘later’ to ‘right now.’ When it comes to the day to day, the physical inconvenience of paperwork is not only limited to filling it in, but filing it and storing it. Is it now time to reclaim that office space? What about the printing costs and paper waste? How many times have files or folders been misplaced or mislaid?

Communication vs confusion

Involving your staff in the decision to go digital is important for a smooth transition. If you understand their everyday struggles and setbacks, you can find a better solution to their individual needs. Your staff are your biggest asset. Ask them what they need to make the switchover smoother. Often platforms provide trials and training so you don’t need to explain what the new system will be like: let them try it for themselves. We’re the only digital care management platform that offers a free plan. We're on a mission to make person-centred technology accessible to everybody in social care. That's why our starter plan is 100% free and always will be – no catch, no time limits or usage restraints. It includes everything you need to get your electronic care planning system up and running.

Going from pen and paper to digital leads to improvements beyond the paperwork itself. For the vast majority of care workers, digital record keeping means more accurate notes and smoother handovers – and crucially, more time to spend with service users, caring for and interacting with them. Digital care records make for a more fulfilling working day: staff are more likely to start a shift with adequate notes to pick up care, before leaving work with up to date and accurate reports for the next team to start.

Engagement vs empowerment

Using digital care plans and risk assessments not only allows for faster and more efficient day-to-day practices but means that information is at your fingertips whenever you need it, wherever you are. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to look back on a service user’s care in general or review a specific event or incident, you can be confident that the material is accurate and accessible. Having this record all in one place (and retrievable from anywhere) means that carers stay focused on the task at hand and managers have the assurance that all plans, logs and reports are in the same system, if and when they need them.

For managers that struggle with maintaining a satisfying work-life balance, streamlining these processes allows you to better oversee your team and potentially recruit and retain staff who value robust procedures and a forward-thinking approach. 

Resources vs resistance

Change is sometimes accompanied by pushback. Even everyday annoyances – which are familiar – are tolerated, whereas something new can be perceived as a mountain to climb especially when it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day.

What you need is consistency and accuracy; and you need to be able to reliably reassure your staff that the changes in play makes their working lives simpler, not more difficult. 

Ultimately, you want to choose a platform that’s easy, efficient and effective. An interface that’s intuitive. A piece of technology that your staff enjoy using. And something that helps you meet your organisational objectives.

Log my Care is a digital care management platform developed for the care sector. We excel in these areas – and we’re here to help you to do the same for your team.

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