Care Hires was created to find a solution to the difficulties experienced by Care Providers to find temporary staff. Traditional solutions and methods are time inefficient, costly, and frequently fail to meet the required fulfilment and legal compliance needs.
The Care Hires system is a platform which solves these problems, and more, by bringing together Care Providers and Staffing Solutions to work together seamlessly.
Tell us about yourself?
My background in business is mostly in providing tech solutions, across various industries, but this is my first time working directly in Care.
In 2014 I founded The GP Service, a service which allows users to obtain GP consultations and prescriptions online, and the experience with this is what set me up for a move into this new direction.
After a chance meeting with Care home owner Nizam Bata, I realised that there was an opening in the market for a tech-based solution to the recruitment problems faced all across the Care industry, and this led to us founding Care Hires together.
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
I think the first thing I would say is that truly understanding the customer’s need, in this case, Care Providers, is absolutely essential. What are their main pain points and how do we solve them? Get the customers involved from the start and don’t make any assumptions.
Secondly, the technology has to be designed so that it’s going to be easy to use for absolutely everyone regardless of how tech-savvy they are. Again, don’t make any assumptions.
Lastly I would say that the best way to approach a new venture like this is to start small. Make sure that you have everything right first, you infrastructure, understand your opportunities and market, and only then take the next step to scale up and grow.
What problem does your business solve?
Care Hires makes the process of Care Providers finding and hiring temporary staff faster and easier, both for them and the Staffing Agencies supplying the staff.
We do this by bringing all parties onto a common cloud-based platform, streamlining admin processes through automation, giving easy access to the system and its information through our in-house developed app, and doing the agency management side of the relationship ourselves.
So from the point of view of the Care Provider, all they need to do is post the shifts they need to be filled and the qualifications required, then choose from the offers they receive.
All the staff are pre-vetted, they pay a single flat rate for everything on a pay-as-you-go basis, and at the end of each period they pay a single invoice to Care Hires for everything.
It means that Care Providers have a lot more time to dedicate to providing services to their Care Users, and can often realise huge efficiency savings. So far we have saved our Providers almost £1.3 million in agency fees and an average of over £8
What is the inspiration behind your business?
When I met company co-founder Nizam Bata he had already been working in the Care industry for a number of years, and it was really interesting hearing him describe his frustrations and difficulties around staffing.
It was a subject I hadn’t really thought about until that point, and it seemed like the kind of problem that was crying out for a tech-based solution.
The size and importance of the Care industry is only set to grow over the coming years with the UK’s ageing population, so making sure that Care providers are able to operate more effectively is a huge market.
It’s also great to know that by driving this progress in the industry we’re enabling Care providers to drive down the cost of care and make sure that staff are in place to deliver much-needed services to Care users to enhance their quality of life. It’s a scenario where everyone benefits.
What is your magic sauce?
I think the real difference is that the Care Hires system was built from the outset for the Care industry, in concert with Care Providers and Agencies, to make sure that it addresses their specific needs and the nuances of their situation.
It’s not a generic system or something designed for another industry being forced to fit another.
It’s something we’re also continually improving because the work doesn’t stop once the product has been delivered to the end user, the relationship continues to grow and strengthen, their feedback going directly into our development process.
Because we actively manage agency relationships on behalf of our Care Providers, we’re constantly in contact with both them and the Agencies that supply staff, so we always know about the current state of the market and what its changing needs are.
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
Right now it still feels like we’re at the start of the journey and there is a huge way still to go! Through 2021 we were bringing the system live and rolling it out to the first customers, and it’s now successfully in use with customers all over the UK.
In early 2022 we secured £2 million in investment, which gives us the resources to speed up development and the rollout of the product to a quickly growing customer base, and of course, it was a huge vote of confidence in both the team and the product.
Ultimately we would like to become known as a market leader in this space and I see every reason to think that we’ll be able to achieve that.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
It’s not so much an issue but one thing we were very conscious of was not trying to do too much too soon, and there were a few times when we had to really think carefully about our direction of travel.
It would be very easy to get carried away with all the different features and capabilities we would like to have in the system immediately at launch, the problem then is delivering it all in a timely and cost-effective manner!
So what’s really important is understanding the core set of capabilities your product will need, making sure that you deliver on these as strongly as possible, and having a clear roadmap in place for development.
Once you have these in place it’s much easier to get buy-in from prospective customers, because the worst thing you can do is over-promise and under-deliver.
How do people get involved/buy into your vision?
Until recently we’ve really relied strongly on word of mouth and referrals from satisfied customers to help us grow our business, but now we’re working hard to raise our profile, especially among Care Providers.
As part of this we’ve been visiting as many exhibitions as possible, really getting out there to meet as many people as possible and give them a chance to see the system in action as possible.
When they get a chance to see it in person, or even just book an online demo with us, they very quickly see how the system can make their lives a lot easier.