Increasing Efficiency for Eden Autism Employees Helps Clients

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In 1975, a not-for-profit school for people with autism was opened in New Jersey. The school has grown and now not only offers education, but adult services, group homes, and outreach programs for those who have autism at all stages of life. This particular organization, Eden Autism, has provided educational and life skills services for numerous children and adults in New Jersey with different developmental needs for over 40 years.

From the Eden Autism website:

Eden is a not-for-profit organization with a mission to improve the lives of children and adults with autism. The organization has over 40 years of clinical experience and success in educating individuals with autism, and training family members, educators, and other professionals in these best practices.

Founded in 1975, Eden began as a small, family-oriented school for individuals with autism. Today, Eden offers an extensive range of services to meet the needs of individuals with autism, and its highly regarded programs have been implemented in schools and other settings across the country. Eden is recognized nationally for providing education and training in autism.

Eden’s services include early intervention, individualized education, employment training and placement, and group residences, as well as a comprehensive outreach program that offers expertise and assistance to parents and professionals in the greater autism community.

Eden has been delivering services to children and adults with autism and their families, educators, and other professionals since 1975.

Highlights & Outcomes of Shyft’s implementation at Eden Autism include:

  • Retaining Employees
  • Reducing Burnout
  • Expediting Shift Changes
  • Covering Shifts

Eden Autism signed up on Shyft in March of 2017, and almost immediately grew to one of our most active locations in the United States.  They have nearly 100 users signed up at their location and they’re using the app daily. Employees have posted over 8,000 hours since they began and are sending hundreds of chat messages.

As part of our Success Stories series, we knew we had to reach out to this awesome location to get their own success story so we can share it with other managers who are looking to share in that progress.  So we sat down and had a discussion with Jonathan Davis, a Residential Supervisor with the organization at their Princeton, New Jersey location. The work that Jonathan and his team do at Eden Autism can occasionally be difficult but is always worthwhile on the path to making sure that people of all ability sets are able to experience an all-embracing education and live in environments that provide a positive, cheerful atmosphere.

“I put in personally, I’m a salaried employee, I put in those hours, in two weeks. I’m anywhere between 105 and 120. It expects a lot from employees, and that’s all agencies really.”

The healthcare field, any agency or organization that runs 24/7, at any given point you can have over 100 employees working at any time of the day. If 10 of those employees call out because they’re sick, or because they have an emergency, means that those other staff who are off, who take advantage of the fact that they’re off… I need someone to work a shift.

Davis told us about the workload at Eden.

The implementation of the Shyft workforce management solution has helped Jonathan and his team, however, more efficiently find avenues to make sure shifts get covered when staff are unable to come to work.

Businesses such as Eden Autism, don’t have the luxury of working while understaffed.  There are students that cannot wait for care just because a handful of employees weren’t able to make it into work today; the show must go on.

Without Shyft, the amount of time necessary to dedicate to finding last-minute coverage for multiple employee-absences is very significant. That time needs to be focused towards what Eden Autism’s mission is; helping others.

Reducing Burnout in a High-Turnover Industry

“In my industry, retaining employees – aspects of the job, the industry as a whole, has about a 50% turnover rate. It’s an industry that just has such a high turnover rate. You have people that work, 50-60 hours at a time a week, people working 200 hours a month because we’re a 24/7 operation. There’s always staff at the residences, it basically expects a lot of the employees, ” Jonathan shared.

While scheduling technology may not be able to reduce the number of hours employees dedicate to their workplace, it does have the capability of eliminating the awkwardness of telling an employer that you can’t come into work to cover a shift because they need to just relax – reducing burnout.  

That’s one of the greatest things about Shyft; giving employees the peace of mind that, if needed, they can take that day to ground themselves and really just reset their minds.  Being overworked is one of the greatest factors in a high turnover rate.

In John’s particular field, retaining employees is everything – people who know the ropes are much more likely to provide quality care and assistance than someone who’s just figuring it out on the spot.

Keeping Sane & Eliminating Scheduling Confusion

John shared with us the rather usual process they used before implementing Shyft. This older process of figuring out who was going to be working a particular shift went something like this:

“You posted on the community board that you’re looking for coverage, but did you complete a post? Because just posting on the community board and having so many people say they’ll work it – but who’s actually the one who’s taking the shift?

Five people say I can work, but who’s the person who’s committed and communicated?”  

The levels of confusion with this inefficient method added unnecessary stress to both the employees, and to the management. The employee who listed the shift they needed coverage for, would not be able to commit to any other plans because of the uncertainty of not knowing if their shift was covered by a compatible employee. The multiple employees who’ve said they can cover said shift also cannot commit to covering it, due to the uncertainty.  

The thought process likely along the lines of, “Which one of us five are actually going to work? If I work, I should cancel my plans for coffee with an old friend. But I don’t want to cancel just yet, because someone else may work the shift.” It’s unnecessary stress.

For the management in charge of that older process, who already have an overflowing plate of responsibilities, have to now oversee this confusing process.

Now with the Shyft way, even if a shift gets posted last-minute, it expedites the process and eliminates those logistical nightmares for management and employees.

“If there’s one place for me to say, “there’s a shift available,” and it automatically just goes out to every single person that’s in [Shyft], it’s so much easier,”

Davis stated.

We’d like to thank Johnathan Davis for taking the time to share his story!

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