Do you choose a company by reputation or what the costs will be? Perhaps the most important qualifier for you is that the company is located close to your parent. If you choose the one with the lowest rate, is that what you get in quality? It certainly could be! There is an old phrase, “you get what you pay for”. I can’t say that is always the truth but, there is some truth to it.
Do you see value in paying more for one company over another? Are you willing to pay more for caregivers that are trained and supervised? Does a company with guidelines and high ethical standards meet your standards for care? Is length of time in business important to you? I would look for a company in business at least 5 years (be sure the wrinkles are out of the company). You should ask who owns a company and know what motivated them to build this type of business – it might give you an idea on company values. Value is determined by the buyer not the company. However, a good reputation should be perceived as “value” – it means the company has a track record and works at excellence.
Inquire about general liability insurance, bonding if necessary, employee taxes, workman’s compensation insurance and also ask about employee benefits. Companies that care about the caregivers they hire, who pay for vacation/sick leave and health insurance, tend to acquire better employees and have higher retention levels than those who don’t, but charge less.
If the first or even the second person a company sends to you is not a match in personality, (the skill needs should have been made by the agency) don’t give up. It is important to tell the agency you need someone who is more talkative, or someone who cooks what your mom likes – be specific on what will increase the quality of your loved one’s life.
In our agency, we usually say you didn’t marry the first person you dated (or at least most of us didn’t), so we can’t expect the first person to be the perfect match – but we will work with the client and the family to find the person that best matches – perfection is rarely possible.
Look at value and not just price when hiring a home care or companion agency for your parent. Give your loved one’s security and peace of mind by finding skilled oversight and good care.