Entries by Solinity Marketing

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Why Assisted Living Jobs Should Be at the Top of Your List

There are many professions that are needed to help an assisted living community run smoothly. While some people might be familiar with assisted living, most people don’t know the diversity of roles available at senior living communities. From caregivers, nursing assistants, hospitality, administration and management, to maintenance and housekeeping, there’s a broad range of opportunities available in the assisted living profession.

What to Expect

When working in senior living, there are two things you can expect: career growth and new experiences. Careers in senior living are known for providing great job security. If you’re looking for a long-term job that can provide you with many benefits and opportunities, senior living might be the industry for you.

You can also expect to be constantly learning new things. Through training, work experiences, or listening to a resident’s stories, assisted living employees are constantly learning and growing in their field. You can expect that some days will present their own challenges, but those challenges are meaningful and worthwhile. Expect to find and build a work culture that is supportive and collaborative. Expect to jump into a career that is fulfilling and life changing, not only for yourself, but everyone you interact with.

The Benefits of a Career in Assisted Living

Professionals who work in this industry are often deeply compassionate, hardworking and purpose-driven. Every position provides the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with residents and coworkers, whether working directly in direct resident/patient care, administration or in a support role like maintenance or dining services. Careers in assisted living bring a sense of purpose knowing you are making a difference in the lives of others. In many instances, employees become like a second family to residents.

As we continue to see people living longer, the senior living profession will always be in demand, making it a great option for job security and growth. 

Assisted Living employees show up to work everyday prepared to help residents, but sometimes the residents help the employees just as much. There is an abundance of history and wisdom within the walls of an assisted living community. Residents sharing first-hand accounts of historical events, personal values and lessons learned. Assisted living jobs are also less physically demanding than other skilled nursing or personal care positions, which is a major perk. In an assisted living environment, you can expect to spend more time caring for your residents and less time on your feet throughout the community. 

Everyday is an opportunity to find new ways to tackle daily challenges. Whether you are assisting a resident/patient with living skills like eating, showering and walking, or finding new ideas to engage and enrich the lives of those in your care. No matter the task, assisted living team members can find comfort in knowing that what they are doing matters. 

Here at Masonic, we offer a wide range of perks and benefits including: 

  • Free TARC monthly pass
  • Get paid early through PayActiv app
  • Free uniforms
  • Care Clinic on campus
  • Referral bonuses
  • Child care discount at Sproutlings Pediatric Day Care & Preschool on campus
  • Job training, education support, and career development
  • Recognition for years of service
  • Resources to help when you need it most – financial, housing, etc. 
  • Paid time off that you start earning right away
  • Health, dental and vision insurance 
  • 403b with company match

The Challenges of an Assisted Living Job

While developing meaningful relationships with residents is a major perk of the profession, it can also be  challenging at times. Caring for others can be demanding of your physical, mental, and emotional energy.  You have probably read and heard a lot recently about healthcare workers and burnout, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.  A healthy work life balance is important to maintain so that you thrive in your roles at work and at home.  Tips to maintain mental, physical, and emotional energy include making sure to eat a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, staying active, and talking to a professional about your stress levels.  Masonic offers a variety of perks and benefits to help our employees when they need it most. A healthy work-life balance and a communicative, collaborative team will ensure a great experience and career in senior living. 

The pandemic has presented challenges for all professions, including aging care. Masonic provides care to one of the most vulnerable populations and makes some often tough but necessary decisions to protect the health and well-being of its residents/patients and employees. 

Aging and death are a part of life. While one of the most compelling aspects of working in long-term care is bonding with residents, it is also difficult when someone you care for and about, passes away. Employees find grieving to become a natural part of their job. Masonic understands and along with peer support, we provide additional programs to help employees through this process.

Work Environment and Culture

These aspects of assisted living jobs inevitably create a work culture that is focused on support and camaraderie. It is important that, as a team, assisted living employees support each other through compassion, fatigue, and grief. There are many times when an assisted living team gets the chance to bond and celebrate over positive events as well. Helping a resident achieve a physical goal, a successful event planned and executed, or keeping residents healthy amidst a pandemic are just a few examples of the daily positive moments you could experience. Going through these experiences together helps bond the team and re-affirms the importance of assisted living jobs.

Despite common misconceptions, working in assisted living provides a diverse, exciting, and meaningful work environment. There are some repetitive daily operations tasks that occur, but every day in an assisted living community brings something new. Monday nights might bring fun and enriching activities in the common room, Wednesday a group outing to a local art fair, Friday night movies, and Sunday reminiscing on old stories. And that doesn’t include all of the various moments outside of resident activities. Helping residents with laundry, light housekeeping, health reminders, taking care of the grounds, providing a clean environment, planning events, and managing office operations are just a few of the many responsibilities assisted living professionals juggle on a daily basis.

Flexible Work Schedules and Growth Opportunities

Assisted living communities provide around-the-clock service for their residents, which allows employees to have flexible work schedules. Whether full-time or part-time, employees have the opportunity to choose a schedule that best fits their lifestyle. An assisted living job allows for employees to pick between day or night shifts and weekdays or weekends. This flexibility can provide employees with a great sense of work-life balance. 

Along with flexible scheduling, assisted living jobs also provide extensive growth opportunities. No matter the position, everyone in the assisted living profession has the opportunity to take advantage of learning and growth experiences. With so many career options, employees who are motivated and engaged have the opportunity to grow professionally from additional schooling to career ladders into management positions. An entry-level position such as a nurse’s assistant can advance to a CNA with some additional education. An office admin can gain experience and become an executive director. A marketing associate may become a life enrichment coordinator. From management training programs to on-the-job training, the opportunities for growth are endless.

Pathway to CNA Program

Masonic is invested in providing our employees with the opportunities and training needed to grow. Our Pathway to CNA program allows for employees to make a living while simultaneously earning their CNA certification. Upon starting, our nursing assistants make $11 an hour while training to become a CNA. Once training is completed, our CNAs earn up to $15 an hour and other incentives like referral bonuses and shift differential. Many CNA’s go on to become licensed practical nurses. This program generally takes two years and the starting wage is up to $23 an hour. Two more years of nursing school and they can become an RN and have the opportunity to make up to $28 an hour. In just four years, our employees have the opportunity to more than double their income and gain valuable experiences.

Starting a Career in Assisted Living

Assisted living jobs are for anyone who is searching for an exciting, flexible and meaningful career. Masonic is always searching to add passionate members to our team. If you are interested in starting a career that makes a difference while also making a living, search our current openings here.

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How to Find a Job in Senior Living Near You

Working with seniors is a thriving field with plenty of opportunities. Long-term care including assisted living and memory care communities bode well for continued job stability and growth. 

According to Statista, the average life expectancy in the United States has increased to 76 years for males and 81 years for females. In addition, census projections indicate that by 2030 Baby Boomers will be 65 or older, securing the demand for professionals with knowledge and experience in aging and eldercare. 

Senior living communities, like Masonic Homes Kentucky, are continuously looking for individuals with various skill and education levels, making this an excellent industry for a wide range of job seekers. Your decision to find a job in senior living is a smart career choice.  Especially if you’re compassionate, patient, and enjoy working with seniors.

Here’s all you need to know about the industry and how it could be the perfect fit for you.

Types of Senior Living Communities

There are various types of senior living communities. Some specialize in a specific level of care. Others offer extensive care at multiple levels in one community. Researching and understanding the different types of senior living options is a great place to start your job search. Start by determining the best fit for your interests, skill level, and current and future goals.

Retirement Communities

Retirement, active adult or independent living communities are designed for healthy, active seniors (usually 55 or older) who enjoy social activities with their peers. Retirees looking to downsize and enjoy life and travel without the hassle of home maintenance are usually residents of independent living communities.

These communities offer a wide range of upscale amenities like wellness centers, spas, scheduled transportation, walking trails, craft shops, daily chef-prepared meals, hair salons, and fitness centers.

 

Assisted Living Communities

Assisted living communities are perfect for aging adults who enjoy a variety of social and wellness activities, but need help with physical activities such as bathing, housekeeping, and dressing. 

A career in assisted living is an excellent choice if you’re starting your career, do not have a medical degree, and prefer working with seniors who require minimal medical assistance.

Memory Care

Memory care communities offer individuals with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, safe and secure environments.  

Masonic Homes of Kentucky has two memory care centers in Louisville, KY.  Both locations have specially trained staff that provide 24/7 support for residents and their families. Residents enjoy individualized nursing care in secure, safe, and comfortable surroundings.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs)

Continuing care retirement communities combine several types of senior living options in one location. These communities are part independent living, part assisted living and part skilled care.  

Masonic Homes of Kentucky is a continuing care retirement community that combines multiple levels of care, all on the same campus. 

The different levels of care offered in CCRCs make this an exceptional place to start and grow your career.

Types of Senior Living Jobs Near You

Whether you just graduated from high school or have a degree, there are many opportunities for you in this growing and dynamic field.

Continue reading to get acquainted with senior living jobs near you.

Executive Director

The executive director of a senior living community runs the entire community. They’re responsible for making sure the community operates smoothly. From marketing, operations, hospitality, sales and hiring, the executive director is the face of the community.

To secure an executive director position, you need leadership, problem-solving, and decision-making skills, along with a degree in business or health care management. Individuals with extensive experience in management or senior living communities may move into an executive director position without a degree.

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)

Certified nursing assistants work under the supervision of registered nurses. They’re responsible for helping patients with eating, bathing, grooming, turning, transporting, and more. CNAs often assist registered nurses by checking vital signs, changing bed linens, dressing wounds, gathering supplies for doctors, and documenting health concerns.

Although a degree is not required to become a CNA, you will need training and a postsecondary non-degree, as well as a certification. Each state determines CNA certifications, so make sure you research your state’s certification process and exam requirements.

Learn more at Masonic’s Pathway to CNA Program. 

Registered Nurse (RN)

Registered nurses play a crucial role in the health care of residents in senior living communities. Depending on the type of community, a registered nurse may be available 24 hours or on an on-call basis.  

An RN is responsible for managing and observing the total medical care of residents, including creating initial care plans, giving injections, drawing blood, preparing IVs, managing CNAs, and supporting patients and their families.

RN’s must obtain an Associate Degree in nursing, in addition to the successful completion of The National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX). 

If interested, you can also specialize in geriatrics.  Geriatric doctors specialize in caring for aging adults who have complex medical issues. This specialization would benefit senior living communities like Masonic Homes of Kentucky. 

Occupational Therapist

Occupational therapists in senior living committees use therapeutic techniques to help patients who are disabled, injured, or have cognitive issues improve their level of functioning. They help patients learn to perform daily tasks like bathing, dressing, feeding, and cooking for themselves. A bachelor’s and a graduate degree in occupational therapy are required to pursue a career in occupational therapy. 

Physical Therapist

Unlike an occupational therapist, a physical therapist specializes in conditions that limit a person’s ability to move. They design custom exercise plans for patients who suffer from injuries or medical conditions. Physical therapists focus on helping patients increase and maintain mobility. Educational requirements include a bachelor’s degree and a doctor of physical therapy degree. You will also be required to pass the National Physical Therapy Examination.

Activities Director or Life Enrichment Director

The activities director is responsible for planning and organizing events, socials, and trips for residents. This is an excellent position if you’re creative, flexible, social, and have a background in event or recreation planning. A degree or certification in recreation is helpful but not required. 

Hospitality Manager

From the hospitality manager to servers, bakers and cooks, there is a place for many culinary positions in a community. The hospitality manager is responsible for dining services and food service departments in addition to overseeing food planning, preparation, and maintaining sanitation and safety standards. Responsibilities may also include hiring, training, and directing cooks, wait staff, and chefs. 

There are opportunities for dietary directors and other health-related professionals on the dining team. A degree is not always necessary, but several years of experience in food service and hospitality in a senior living community are helpful.

How to Search for Jobs in Senior Living Near You

Once you’ve chosen a career path. Consider your current experience along with any additional certifications or degrees that are required before you begin your search.

Prepare a targeted, well-written resume highlighting your previous jobs, skills, education and career goals. Create a customized cover letter for each job description. Use your cover letter to highlight previous experience, explain why you’d be the perfect candidate and your knowledge of the company. Cover letters are great if you have minimal or no experience.

Here are some of the most effective methods for finding jobs in senior living.

Career Websites and Job Boards

Senior living communities often use job search sites like Indeed. Upload your resume and cover letter on each site. You can also set up alerts to your email, so you’re notified when jobs that match your search criteria become available in your preferred city. 

Make sure to set up specific searches based on your experience, job title and salary requirements. Many of these sites offer resume builders and articles related to specific industries. This is a great way to stay on top of the industry, get interview tips and master industry jargon.

 

Networking and Referrals

Networking is still one of the best ways to find open positions. Don’t be afraid to reach out to family and friends to let them know that you’re looking for a job in senior living. 

Facebook is a great place to let people know that you’re searching for a job. Attend job fairs in the senior living industry, connect with professionals on LinkedIn, and look for senior living professional associations in your area.  

If you’re in high school or college, check with your counselor or career center. These are helpful resources for job placement, resume preparation and alumni connections.

Senior Living Community Websites

Visiting the career page of senior living communities is the most efficient and productive way to find jobs in your area. Read the about us page and review open positions and the requirements for each. If a position is not available in the area you’re interested in, set up a job alert.

Call or visit communities with open positions, introduce yourself, send your resume, and ask for an interview.  If job openings are not currently available, ask if you can email or drop off a resume for the hiring manager. Make sure you follow up on your resume. A phone call is a great way to distinguish yourself from other candidates.

Wrap up and Next Steps

Congrats! We hope you have a better understanding of the senior living industry, the types of careers, and the requirements needed.

Many senior living communities welcome and appreciate volunteers. This is a great way to learn the business, make connections and get your foot in the door for future opportunities. Consider taking an entry-level position or volunteering at a senior living community until you complete your degree.  

If you’d like additional information on types of senior living communities and jobs, check out Masonic Homes Kentucky.

Types of Jobs in Senior Living

There’s a phenomenon sweeping the United States that’s certain to have a large impact on jobs in the senior living industry, including here at Masonic. 

The United States Census Bureau projects that by the mid-2030s, adults age 65 and older are expected to outnumber children under 18 for the first time in history. By the same time, 1 in 5 American citizens will be a senior. While increased life expectancy and the aging of baby boomers are two of the main contributing factors to the demographic change, make no mistake: America is getting older. 

The industry is bracing for a literal baby ‘boom,’ and it’s bringing with it ample career opportunities

So if lockdowns and other virtual work circumstances have inspired you to make a career change there are numerous rewarding jobs in the senior living profession. 

Corporate/Administrative Jobs

Do you enjoy spending time with aging adults but prefer business casual over scrubs? 

Senior living administrators supervise the daily functioning of the community; everything from new residents’ admittance, financial matters, reviewing employee performances, as well as screening and hiring new employees is conducted by the administration department. 

Administrators serve as ambassadors to the senior living organization, as well as to the communities they serve. They work to actively network with, promote services and seek positive internal and external public relations. 

You’ll need both a strong business mindset as well as a compassionate human-centered attitude for the job.

Medical Jobs 

A Director of Nursing (DON) monitors the overall well-being of residents as well as manages the day-to-day clinical services of the community to ensure residents’/patients’ health care needs are met. The DON wears many hats, but it’s all in the service of enhancing the daily lives of seniors in the community. 

Senior living is a welcoming industry for Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs), State Tested Nursing Assistants (STNAs), and non certified caregivers. 

Whether you’re just beginning your job search or looking for a career shift, medical jobs in senior living are a promising career choice. Unlike in a hospital or clinical setting, you’ll enjoy truly getting to know residents/patients through everyday engagement and communication. You’ll be empowered with the understanding that you’re playing a vital role in the lives of so many. Medical-related jobs provide the opportunity for real-life, long-term connections with amazing people.

Daily duties vary but include taking blood pressure, monitoring health, managing medication, assisting with hygiene, and helping transfer and move residents/patients.

Did you know? Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) help patients and residents with their direct care needs, typically under the supervision of a nurse. Becoming a CNA also increases chances of being accepted into nursing programs, and is a prerequisite in some institutions. 

Pathway to a CNA 

Those who are considering a career as a CNA must have a keen understanding of the pros and cons of working in nursing care. While the job is enriching, a career as a CNA requires training and preparation. 

Opportunities for Education 

Becoming a certified nursing assistant (CNA) does not entail attending a traditional four-year university. You will be required to earn a diploma or certificate via a CNA training program. 

These will include coursework as well as hands-on clinical training that will prepare students for a career in nursing. 

Certifications

Certification programs vary by state, but potential applicants should be ready to complete a state-approved program at a licensed institution to receive their certification. The programs are meant to inform and educate students to ensure that they receive the proper skills to provide patient care. 

Growth 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, the occupation is expected to grow rapidly over the next decade, with reports citing 8% growth over the next 10 years with the most promising outlook for job opportunities being in long-term care facilities and nursing homes. 

Our Pathway to CNA

At Masonic, we offer our employees educational opportunities to help them grow in their career. If you’re interested, learn more at Pathway to CNA Program.

Jobs in Dining and Hospitality Services 

Those with food industry experience may be surprised to discover that dining services in assisted living and other senior communities have drastically evolved in recent years. Baby boomers began reaching 65 as early as 2011 and brought with them a refined sense of taste. Gone are the days of plastic trays, instant potatoes and mystery dessert jello. 

The age group’s palates crave healthier and more nutritious dining options. They’re challenging traditional norms and setting new standards for cuisine options in senior living communities nationwide. 

Think organic salad bars, free-range protein options and meat substitutes for residents who prefer plant-based options. Imagine dining areas that look as if they belong on a cruise ship or in a luxury hotel

Baby boomers, in stark contrast to previous generations, are also not willing to sacrifice their overall dining experience. It’s not uncommon for senior living communities to offer a variety of dining room options with some housing multiple restaurants, bistros and cafes to cater to residents’ nutritional and social needs. 

That’s a lot of food preparation. And even more time cooking, serving, cleaning and coordinating the next shift. Senior living dining services essentially function as stand-alone restaurants and are a terrific option for those with hospitality experience, or newcomers that wish to be part of something bigger with room for advancement. 

Dieticians and Nutritionists 

A growing number of retirement communities are employing dietitians and nutritionists to ensure residents are offered personalized, well-balanced meals that cater to specific health needs. 

Personal meal planning is sometimes required if the resident/patient suffers from a disease such as diabetes or gout. Other residents may require a tailored meal plan for weight loss or gain. 

For those residents/patients in higher levels of care, such as assisted living or memory care communities, oversight of a dietician or nutritionist is essential in the meal planning and execution of diet-specific requirements.

Additional dietician roles can include coaching residents on proper dietary needs, evaluating response to the meal plan, promoting healthy lifestyle habits, and creating and administering educational material.

Marketing and Advertising Jobs in Senior Living

Moving a loved one into senior living care is a long-term financial investment, so making the commitment to move-in is not a decision most make lightly. 

Sales and marketing personnel are responsible for providing information to potential residents and their families. Luckily, the industry has moved away from informational pamphlets and is turning to social networks for marketing and outreach. 

Because a growing number of smartphone users are seniors, a vibrant and professional web presence and marketing campaign are key to staying competitive in the growing industry. Twenty-five percent of seniors over 65 are now on social media so there is ample opportunity for engagement. 

Research shows that 46% of those 65 years and older reported using Facebook, and 38% of the same age group say they’re active on YouTube, proving that social media crosses generational lines. 

If you’re well-versed in advertising, sales, communications, public relations, or graphic design, there are promising career opportunities awaiting in senior living. 

Life Enrichment and Activities Jobs

Do you have a passion for working with seniors and wish to make a positive impact? Have you previously held a position in leadership?

A Life Enrichment Director or Activities professional is oftentimes considered the “fun job” in communities. You’ll foster resident relationships as you implement life enrichment activities such as coordinating personalized social engagement activities, group activities, clubs, outings, and educational classes. 

These professionals also have the unique opportunity to not only nurture deep-rooted friendships with residents through one-on-one contact but also upkeep relationships with the residents’ families and loved ones. 

Additional life enrichment duties might include:

  • managing activities’ program finances and evaluating the related budget
  • coordinating civic, church or other volunteer groups to visit the community
  • stay up to date on the latest technology opportunities related to activities
  • prepare engaging, enjoyable activities that create social opportunities for staff and residents

Teaching in Senior Living

Career opportunities for teachers stretch far beyond the traditional classroom or one-on-one tutoring. And you don’t necessarily need a state certification to land a teaching job in senior living. 

Clinical and wellness programs know no boundaries. And nowadays directors are more excited than ever to try out new approaches to life enrichment activities, as well as wellness and education programs. Such initiatives are specifically designed to enhance community knowledge and provide a sturdy foundation for better senior care. Teachers and educators are sought after to deliver such programs in a way that’s informative and fun for residents. 

jobs in senior living

Anyone who learns is a student, so you’ll make good use of your instructional skills to exercise patience, organization, communication, creativity, and adaptability. 

With the right educational resources, communities can provide outstanding physical, emotional, and intellectual support to positively impact the lives of their residents. 

The need for educators in senior living will undoubtedly increase in the coming years. If you’re one of the 25% of teachers who are thinking of calling it quits after the last school year, an education job in senior living might be the right move for you. 

At Masonic, we believe in multi-generational environments where children and aging adults are in contact. We have a variety of teaching opportunities at Sproutlings Pediatric Daycare and Preschool. This space welcomes both medically fragile and traditional children to learn, play and grow with one another.

Flexibility and Volunteering

Hourly, Part-Time, and Full-Time Positions

The pandemic has had impacts on workplace retention and led to difficult-to-solve staffing issues for many industries and organizations, including Masonic.

This has resulted in many communities offering flexible work opportunities for new and future employees. Increased options for hourly and part-time work make it easier for busy individuals to balance their work/life obligations.

Full-time positions are needed across the industry as a whole, and more opportunities are expected to rise as the percentage of elders in the population increases over the next decade. 

Volunteer in Senior Living 

Volunteering is a great way to help build relationships and make a difference in your community. Individuals often find that connecting and working with elders leaves a lasting impression that positively re-shapes the way they view both seniors and the senior-living community as a whole. 

Looking to strengthen your resume? Volunteering in a senior living community can provide you with vital experience and help prepare you for any career. You’ll enhance your organization, communication, fundraising, and teamwork skills, as well as grow both professionally and emotionally. 

Opportunities Await

Masonic employs over 700 wonderful employees that we consider family. We’re always looking to attract new talent to join our team of passionate people who inspire lives every day. 

If you’re looking for a career where you can make a difference while making a living, view our current openings here.