Last updated: 27.03.13

Healthcare training launched to residential home staff

Training is being rolled out to staff at a residential care home company to ensure the highest level of customer service is being provided at all 19 of their sites.

Colten Care, which helps people across the south coast, is launching an in-house course this year that it expects each of its 1,500 employees - regardless of their role - to take, reports.

More than 50 group sessions will be attended by workers, where they will learn about the 'smile, stop and speak' approach when addressing customers, as well as how to behave courteously when dealing with complaints and enquiries.

The firm's training officer Kim Atkinson said Colten Care is inviting teams to engage with customer service on various levels, as it is not only residents who count as clients, rather anyone who walks through the door of one of its care homes is seen as a customer.

She added: "They may be a relative, friend, volunteer, medical professional or supplier, but all of them take away an impression of the service they receive."

Meanwhile, Anneli Daniels, head of people and talent at Colten Care, explained the programme is seeking to drive customer care from the first day of a member of staff's induction, right through to every element of their work. "It's about ensuring a consistency of approach and a framework for assessment. Ultimately, there shouldn't be a part of our business that isn't covered by a brand standard," she was quoted as saying.

The business training will be carried out by Colten Care's HR and learning development departments, who will also emphasise the importance of active listening and maintaining eye contact in face-to-face interactions.

Companies that are looking to launch similar initiatives, but do not have the time or resources, may want to turn to the services of a third-party provider such as Virtual College, which offers online learning packages.

The institution boasts a wealth of e-learning modules related to care, covering topics like Children's and Young People's Development in Health and Social Care Settings and Communication in Health and Social Care.