The increasing population of elderly adults and individuals with chronic conditions is resulting in a higher demand for home care services in Canada, which aligns with the desire expressed by 91% of Canadians who wish to stay in the comfort of their own homes. There is an increasing need for personal and medical care services, which offers attractive business opportunities in the healthcare industry.
If you are a PSW or an entrepreneur considering starting your own home care business in the industry, you may be wondering, "where and how should I start?". We need to start by understanding the different types of home health care businesses.
What is a home health care agency/provider?
The term' home health care' can express the whole concept, which means that professional caregivers or medical professionals will visit an individual's home and provide support and help to depend on their needs.
Medical home health care vs. non-medical home care agency
Medical home health care agencies offer nursing services and monitoring of an individual's health condition, such as mental state or blood pressure. They also take care of wounds or injury for patients who are senior citizens or who just get out of the hospitals. These services should be provided by licensed and skilled nurses or professionals.
Non-medical home care agencies provide less complicated services that support daily living activities such as personal care, housekeeping, shopping, meal preparation, medication reminders, and transportation. Such services are vital for seniors to enable safe and comfortable living conditions in their own houses.
Steps to start a home care business
After you have determined what kind of home care business to start, now it's time to move on to some technical works. These are some fundamental steps applying to start your own home care business as it would be similar to most of any other companies in all industries.
1. Create a business plan
No business starts without a proper business plan as it's the backbone of your company. A complete business plan should include the following:
2. Choose a business name
Every business needs a name to differentiate itself from the others. Select a good name that reflects the business, check if a name is already taken, and register to protect your business name. There are a few points to keep in mind while choosing a business' name:
3. Register your business with the government
You must register your business with the government before you even start operating it. Depending on a state-to-state basis, the requirements will be different. However, you need to certify your home care business for a license by completing the home care application. Additionally, you are required to incorporate your business, obtain the tax identification, and the federal business number.
4. Obtain your business licenses and permits
When owning a home care business, you and all your staff members will work with seniors, people who have complex health issues. Therefore, it is crucial to obtain the appropriate licenses and permits needed to operate the home care business. Moreover, every member of your business must be certified or renew certifications for CPR. Everyone needs to have extensive knowledge of life-saving procedures and techniques when working with elderly adults or those with health issues.
5. Prepare your finances
You can start by open a business checking and credit card account. For a start-up, it can be tough to get funding at the beginning. However, you can seek for help from national and regional business support, present your business idea in front of incubators, apply for business loans to cover the start-up costs. Moreover, you should have a computerized accounting system to keep track of your business' cash flow.
It's crucial to hire staff that can represent and reflect your business' core values. The hiring process can take time in the beginning since you need to promote your business and attract potential candidates to apply that can be done through the business' social media, website, or even job sites. Depending on your needs, you may look for caregivers or employees that support the business' operations.
The success of the home care business mostly depends on the caregivers. The company's reputation heavily weights upon the quality of care delivered to the customers. Therefore, you should spend a decent amount of time interviewing prospects and requests as well as verify references to hire the most compassionate, resourceful, and qualified caregivers.
Once you finish interviewing all potential employees, make sure that you carefully conduct extensive background checks to avoid any legal issues.
7. Acquire customers
Having a decent business plan in place and an ideal team lined up, it's time to start acquiring customers and operating your home care businesses which is one of the toughest parts of owning and developing any type of business, especially a service-based business with lots of existing competitors like a home health care agency.
To effectively and efficiently get clients, you may need to develop effective marketing strategies.
a. Develop an online presence. Get yourself an essential website with a business's name and all the necessary information to represent the company. By doing so, you can reach out to more customers and persuade them first to be aware of your presence. If you start with a limited budget, many free website builders can help you to build a functioning website for the business.
b. Let Google know your presence. Nowadays, when customers look for something, they are likely to Google it. Therefore, your business information must appear on Google. This can be done through registering your healthcare business with Google so that information such as phone number, address, or email can be accessible for potential customers. However, you need to create your website first.
c. Promote your differentiating features. If you have a potential client, make sure that they know why your business is different, hence, better than others. Mention it directly in your tagline or outline it on your website's homepage and marketing collaterals to deliver a brand message.
How Helpers’ services can help?
Helpers is a service that helps you request on-demand home care with flexibility and convenience from qualified helpers. Our services are designed to make your life as easy as possible. Our team combines our passion for better healthcare with a depth of experience in senior care, home care, and technology.
Helpers was formed around a mission to create a more sustainable approach to support Canada's aging population. We understand that great care starts with great people and that is why we are committed to helping our clients and our workers get more of what they want! We must help seniors maintain their independence while ensuring families and loved ones get the trusted help they need.
Through our app, our clients can select non-medical home care services they need and request them on-demand, paying only what they need and when they need it. Our services include personal care, mobility assist, medication reminder, and driving companion – all will be billed by the service instead of by the hour.
If you're interested in more information about how Helpers can help your elderly loved ones, contact us or call 289-768-9616.