How AI Became A Gamechanger In Devoted Guardians’ Recruitment Efforts

You can watch the Staffing Summit the below story is based on here.

While recruitment and retention issues continue to plague the home-based care industry, provider leaders are challenging themselves to come up with creative mitigation strategies.

One of the key solutions that has arised is the utilization of artificial intelligence (AI).


“One of the biggest changes that we’ve made the last couple of years is diving into AI, and I’ve really immersed myself in trying to figure out how we can apply AI to all the aspects of what we’re currently doing,” Aaron Sinykin, founder and CEO of Devoted Guardians, said during Home Health Care News’ virtual Staffing Summit last week. “The last couple years, we’ve been starting to move into that sector along with the robotic process automation options there.”

The Phoenix-based at-home care company implemented an AI employee recruiting system that allowed the organization to engage with potential applicants 24/7, for instance.

“The minute someone is engaging us on any of these platforms, we have an AI system that’s going to engage back — answer any question that they might have and really drive them to scheduling interviews — to really cut down on those ghosting problems that we’ve been all seeing over the last couple of years,” Sinykin said.


Sinykin has found the 24/7 aspect of Devoted Guardians’ AI employee recruiting system crucial, as more applicants are applying during nights and weekends.

“In the past, when they would apply for a job at night, or on the weekend, they’d wait for a response on Monday morning,” he said. “It was more of an expectation that, ‘I know, I’m applying after hours. I know that most people aren’t working, and I’ll wait for a typical response.’ I think that really changed during COVID. We found that people just weren’t that patient anymore. They wanted a result when they wanted it, and I think that is just an overall reflection of where everything is now. We have to be able to meet everyone with overall needs and wants.”

In addition to Devoted Guardians’ use of AI tools, the company has also implemented an employee rewards system.

The system works by pulling data points from the company’s EMR software. These data points included things like points for hours worked, perfect EVV use and strong reporting of clients’ change in condition.

These data points are assigned a star rating. The star rating then corresponds to a financial package on the company rewards site.

“The feedback coming in was just really eye opening — they’ve been really starved for this,” Sinykin said. “Once they were seeing it, they were really getting excited and motivated.”

Devoted Guardians saw its retention rate move from the 40s into the 70s since launching the rewards program. Sinykin noted that the cost of turnover was somewhere between $2,000 and $3,000, so the program is also a cost curbing measure for the company.

Ultimately, he believes that home-based care providers are operating in a slightly more positive home care labor environment.

“On the caregiver side, we’re having a lot more success,” Sinykin said. “I’d say our low point was in 2022, where it was just such a struggle to find anyone who was really willing to work. We’re hiring about 40 caregivers monthly, so we’re really starting to see a positive change there.”

However, Devoted Guardians isn’t seeing the same improved labor market on the home health side.

“We’re having a very hard time finding clinical staff, so I think we’re seeing a pretty big difference between the two different sectors,” Sinykin said. “I think a lot of the caregivers got a little burned out through COVID, and took a break for a little bit, and we’re seeing some of them come back into the market. We saw a lot of clinical staff just leave the overall industry. It’s left a huge hole in the overall market, [in the ability] to hire clinical staff.”

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