How to Hire, Train and Retain Care Providers

Quick Overview

This presentation discusses the process of hiring, training, and retaining caregivers for individuals with special needs. The speakers share their personal experiences and offer advice on finding caregivers, conducting interviews, and establishing routines. They emphasize the importance of building relationships with caregivers and providing ongoing support and training. The speakers also discuss the challenges of hiring and retaining caregivers and suggest strategies for addressing these challenges. They highlight the need for flexibility and the importance of advocating for the best interests of the individual and their family. Overall, the presentation provides valuable insights and practical tips for families seeking to hire, train, and retain caregivers.


In this presentation, Todd Robertson, Kathy Johnson, and Pat Hornbecker discuss the process of finding, hiring, training, and retaining care providers for individuals with special needs. They share their personal experiences and offer advice on navigating this important aspect of caregiving.

Finding Care Providers

Finding the right care providers can be a challenge, but there are several strategies that can help. Some suggestions include:

  • Networking: Look for potential caregivers in your community, such as friends, family members, or church groups. They may have connections or know someone who would be a good fit.
  • College Placement Programs: Contact local colleges or universities with programs in fields such as speech therapy, occupational therapy, or behavioral psychology. Students in these programs may be interested in gaining experience and working with individuals with special needs.
  • Online Platforms: Utilize online platforms such as Craigslist or local Facebook groups to post job ads and connect with potential caregivers.
  • Agencies: Consider working with an agency that specializes in providing care services. They can help with the hiring process and ensure that caregivers are properly trained and qualified.

Training Care Providers

Once you have hired a care provider, it is important to provide them with the necessary training to ensure they can effectively support your loved one. Some tips for training care providers include:

  • Clearly communicate expectations: Clearly outline the responsibilities and expectations of the caregiver, including any specific routines or procedures that need to be followed.
  • Model and demonstrate: Show the caregiver how to perform tasks and provide care by modeling the desired behavior. Repeat the process multiple times and observe them as they perform the tasks themselves.
  • Encourage questions: Encourage caregivers to ask questions and seek clarification if they are unsure about anything. It is important to create an open and supportive environment where they feel comfortable asking for help or guidance.
  • Provide ongoing support: Regularly check in with caregivers to provide feedback, address any concerns, and offer additional training or support as needed. Building a strong relationship with caregivers is crucial for maintaining a positive and effective caregiving dynamic.

Retaining Care Providers

Retaining care providers can be challenging, but there are strategies that can help improve retention rates. Some suggestions include:

  • Building relationships: Foster a positive and supportive relationship with caregivers by showing appreciation for their work and recognizing their value. Encourage open communication and provide opportunities for them to share their thoughts and concerns.
  • Offering incentives: Consider offering incentives such as bonuses, flexible schedules, or additional training opportunities to motivate and reward caregivers for their hard work.
  • Providing a supportive work environment: Create a work environment that is supportive and understanding of caregivers’ needs. Offer flexibility when possible and provide resources or assistance to help them navigate any challenges they may face.
  • Ensuring fair compensation: Ensure that caregivers are paid a fair wage for their work. This can help attract and retain high-quality caregivers who feel valued and appreciated.


Finding, hiring, training, and retaining care providers is an important aspect of caregiving for individuals with special needs. By following these strategies and building strong relationships with caregivers, families can ensure that their loved ones receive the best possible care and support.

Talk details

  • Title: How to hire, train and retain careproviders
  • Author(s): Todd Robertson, Kathy Johnson, Pat Hornbecker
  • Author(s)’ affiliation: None
  • Publication date: 2019-10-11
  • Collection: 2019 ASF Family Conference