Senior living communities that take a deliberate, measured approach to drive the resident experience at a deep individual level, are more efficient, have higher resident and family engagement and satisfaction, and longer stays, research shows.

We provided an example of this measured approach in a previous post, explaining how a new resident named Nancy connected with an Executive Director (ED) who assessed Nancy’s emotional wellbeing and proactively helped her pursue personal vitality by focusing on three key areas—growth, independence and meaningful relationships—within her community. When Nancy later credited that ED with saving her life by helping her activate her best day every day, she realized she needed a systematic approach to drive the Resident Journey and a personalized experience for all residents, family members and staff. The Vitality Activation Approach was born soon after.

The Vitality Activation Approach is a method or process for understanding, defining and driving a resident’s experience based on past, present and future self. It incorporates three indicators—Growth, Independence and Relationships— to help a community assess and respond to a resident’s needs, wants, and continuous aspirations.

The approach requires a consistent way to collect information throughout a resident’s entire journey, or residence, at the community. In the past, communities have collected data in multiple ways—CRM databases, intake surveys, individual check-ins, visual checks, and even annual surveys—and stored the data in silos. These siloed, resident data collection tools make it hard to find and use the data to drive a purposeful interaction for each resident, let alone measure, influence, or activate one’s own vitality.

When paired with technology that collects and analyzes data, provides insights, suggests actions, and measures outcomes, communities can drive the Resident Journey and improve the resident experience in a consistent, systematic way.

Let’s see how it works.


Most Survey Tools Fall Short in Providing True Insights

Upon move in, most communities in the United States leverage discovery surveys to query residents about likes and dislikes, interests, health conditions, and more to try to connect them with the right activities and people. They then use quarterly and annual surveys to determine a resident’s satisfaction with the community.

The challenge: Engagement programming is built on information gathered from these surveys, which are infrequent, completed by multiple teams and rarely stored in a way that the data can be accessed easily to guide meaningful interactions. They capture a moment in time that may or may not be representative of a resident’s overall wellbeing day-to-day. And, as in the case of an annual survey, may take months to offer real insights.

Surveys also feel impersonal and may miss a change in resident wellbeing that isn’t obvious to a caregiver, staff, or a family member. Because residents don’t see immediate action from their resident survey responses, they may mistrust the process.


Consistent and Interactive Resident Data Collection Builds Trust and Informs Action

How can you use technology to collect ongoing, interactive data while building resident trust?

Ask easy-to-answer questions through a familiar device—the television—frequently. Using a television to collect information, allows you to ask non-intrusive, yet personalized questions regularly that residents can answer when convenient for them.

Ask simple questions initially that build confidence and trust with the process. Ask a variety of questions to create a true resident profile for the staff, while allowing the residents to share information that helps them too. Build up to more personal questions that help the resident share true feelings. Data categories could include:

  • New resident interviews or surveys
  • Regularly scheduled 30, 60, 90-day check-ins
  • Real-time, pulse surveys on timely health and wellbeing topics
  • Annual surveys

This real-time surveying requires a technology platform that can support multiple surveys, data capture and analysis. Ideally, that technology has a standard set of questions designed specifically to capture the resident’s journey in a single database and requires minimal customization.


Integrated Analysis Identifies Resident Needs and Trends

This same sophisticated technology includes built-in analysis that scores resident wellbeing using three indicators and provides actionable insights to staff. Each answer is analyzed and given a score. That score is visible as a trend line or a relative score by individual, community, region, or corporation. And that data moves with the resident from one care level to the next.

Dashboard reporting allows staff members to drill down on specific scores and provides insights into the best way to help a resident activate their personal vitality. This allows them to act quickly, when they can have the most impact and then measure that impact with the next set of questions.

The same reporting provides a sophisticated view of the community, from resident wellbeing to satisfaction to immediate needs. It can replace a community’s monthly, quarterly and even annual surveying tools, and provides insights and analysis much faster.


Technology Offers Personalized Content 

While seeing Vitality Activation scores helps staff respond appropriately, it’s also important to help the residents help themselves. Resident Journey technology can feed actionable and relevant content to residents—through the TV—based on their scores.

If a score indicates a resident is feeling disconnected, the Resident Journey foundation can serve up content that encourages them to join an activity. If the resident believes they are utilizing their skills and strengths, it will share content to encourage her to keep up the good work.

This technology can store hundreds of content pieces in a personalized content library and remove content when a resident has viewed it, if desired. This content library can even include evergreen content that is triggered by an anniversary, holiday or other common events that are important to the resident and family members.


Resident Journey Helps You Activate Your Residents’ Best Days

Creating true resident engagement is about helping each resident activate their best day. It is a curated approach that leverages insights gained from the residents themselves and then offers content and ideas to help them improve or maintain their vitality. It uses individual likes and dislikes, interests, personalities, and day-by-day perceptions to personalize experiences for each resident. It works because it is not linear, scripted, nor general: It provides a unique approach that encourages continuous interest and discovery to move a resident from passive engagement to activated vitality.

No one person has the time to learn this much information about every resident in your community. When communities don’t have a formal way to capture data gathered from different people at different times, it’s hard to create a map to guide each resident’s individual journey.

A formal Resident Journey foundation gives you the tools to activate everyone’s best days. It starts the day your resident moves in and can continue past that resident’s departure if you choose. It helps your residents and staff be more proactive and gives family members data transparency that builds confidence.

A sophisticated Resident Journey solution, like the one in Engage360SM, supports your residents’ experience within your community. It replaces siloed data that’s hard to share between teams, resident survey results that sit in file cabinets, and single-purpose, one-off surveys with real-time insights and suggestions that help activate a unique, personalized resident experience. An experience that provides vitality, satisfaction and longevity within your community.

To find out more about how to leverage Engage360 and its Resident Journey foundation, contact us today.