10 Tips to Recruit & Retain Talent

One of the biggest challenges ABA providers face is recruiting technicians and BCBAs and retaining them.

This is a nationwide problem and Covid has only made it worse. Many studies, including our own, shows that losing a clinical team member results in a 5K or greater loss to the company. When you factor in the cost of Indeed ads, time spent interviewing, onboarding, training and then waitlisting a client when their assigned therapist or BCBA resigns, plus the impact on the company culture and your reputation in the community, the cost is likely far greater. We get many calls a week from providers asking for the Secret Sauce so here it is:

  1. What makes you stand out from your competitors? Technicians and BCBAs are a hot commodity and you need to ensure you are minimally paying market competitive rates to even gain their interest in your position. Ensure you have your range of pay on your ad along with any benefits that may be viewed as perks. Does the culture of your company come through in your ad (if you don’t have your vision, mission and values written, now is the time to write them).

  2. No time to waste. You need a recruiting engine. If someone applies, they need to have their resume reviewed quickly as the pond is big with few fish in it. Text your potential hires. Long gone are the days of phone calls and emails. I don’t answer calls from strange numbers, so why would they? Text and get an interview on calendar for as soon as possible.

  3. One interview is enough. Given the competition and for most companies the need to hire many, a strong recruiter with the right interview questions and personality can source, screen and extend an offer to a technician and can initially screen and set an interview with a Sr. Clinician to conduct a second interview with a BCBA hire. Again, no time to waste. Strive to conduct clinical interviews same or next day. If you have a strong “recruiting engine” this should be achievable.

  4. Training is the key to success!! We recognize how valuable and important the 40-hour video trainings are but highly encourage and prefer in-person trainings. As a therapist and a supervisor many moons ago, I could NEVER have successfully worked with my clients and felt comfortable being placed in a home or school with a client having watched 40 hours of video training and this is the feedback I get time and again from BTs at agencies we have worked with. New hires need the old school training to be successful – classroom lectures, videos, role playing, quizzes, shadowing and competency reviews. It may increase your budget for training but trust us – it will pay off in the long run.

  5. Use training as a way of weeding out those who are not a good fit. If they aren’t a job hopper, and you believe they are well spoken and want to learn, then hire them! Your training is the time to take a “green” hire and provide them with a training plan and structure that enables them to go into the field (or not) confident that they have received all the tools necessary for positive client outcomes. Let your training cohort know at the forefront of the training that you are invested in their success and are providing them the opportunity to learn the skills necessary to succeed. But, appreciate that for some, this may not be the job for them and you know they may resign during the training and that is OK. Likewise, let them know that at the end of the training, if they haven’t developed the necessary skills to progress and work in the field, that you may have to part ways. This is honest and will cost you far less to lose 1 or 2 or a handful of trainees during new hire training than to lose them in a month or 2 when families will be upset, programs will be put on hold, recruiting is tasked with finding a replacement, scheduling is a mess and BCBAs are frantically trying to put out fires.

Stay tuned as next month we’ll provide 5 more tips! Our Organizational Assessment helps identify areas of strength and improvement, and covers areas such as Recruiting and Retention, Audit Preparation, and Clinical Compliance to name a few. The end result is an actionable plan with clear steps on how to implement the recommended changes. Executing these changes will enhance efficiency, elevate your company’s culture, enable you to grow the business and improve financial performance. Contact Us to learn more!

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