We had the pleasure of sitting down with Jeff Mannel, Founder and CEO of Atlee Care in Denver, Colorado. He runs a caregiver registry focused on referring quality care to seniors in the area. We’ll share with you a bit about Jeff’s success and tricks of the trade.
How did you get into the registry business?
I had been working my day job with a hospice care agency in Denver. One of my colleagues had been looking into the registry business model and needed a business partner. I thought there had to be a better options to provide quality care, especially in hospice. I knew there was a place for me within care in the home.
I took on the responsibility of taking the registry to the next level. Starting this registry gave me the desire to do something meaningful. My wife also works in healthcare, making work in the home a seamless fit with our family. Having a caregiver registry also provided something for my wife and me to forge into a family business to pass on to our kids one day.
Once I got in, my passion was to be a place where we could give a leg up to caregivers in their life and career. We wanted to build something they wanted to work and grow with. This also meant having high recruiting standards to refer the best quality caregivers to all clients in the area, one of the most meaningful pieces of working in the aging market.
“My passion was to be a place where we could give a leg up to caregivers in their life and career.”
Being an advocate for our community’s seniors keeps me, my wife, and our family going as we continue to grow the business for years to come.
How do you find and recruit the best caregivers?
In Denver, there are very few registries—home care placement agencies—as they’re called here. With our business model, caregivers can negotiate above average rates, while simultaneously lowering clients cost to less than the average market rate. This gives families an affordable option, not forcing them to choose quantity over quality with caregiver support.
The best recruiting tools for caregivers I’ve found tend to be from Craigslist or Facebook. We’ll put a post out and get a good handful of interested caregivers. After background checks and credentialling, we’ll get a solid 1 or 2 that meet the requirements for referral. We have set high expectations for the caregivers we refer. Oftentimes, they end up bringing a decade or more of experience. When we have clients, caregivers are anxious to pick up more hours.
“The best caregivers I’ve found tend to be from Craigslist or Facebook.”
Some of the best caregivers we refer, are direct referrals—caregivers bringing on friends and family. Our Atlee Care family is always growing, thanks to the hard work and dedication of great caregivers.
When you started out how did you ramp up marketing and get those first handful of clients?
This year, we hit a stride and found our ideal client growth strategies, growing over 100% during an eight month window. I have found that my best use of marketing and advertising is through a relationship we made with a local senior living community. I give them my tri-fold brochures, and he gives them out when new residents move into the community.
“This year, we hit a stride and found our ideal client growth strategies, growing over 100% in the past eight months.”
We show up on time and consistently for them, and their residents spread the word organically too. The most effective marketing is referring quality care and relational marketing from facilities.
How do you see technology impacting the home care space?
We couldn’t do this without Ally’s platform. The ability for caregivers to use EVV and clock-in and clock-out has been invaluable. The ability to use the app, and text back and forth when there’s an emergency is great. Ally specifically, is the platform we use the most right now for our central operations.
“We couldn’t do this without Ally’s platform.”
Denver is pretty strict, when you think about the compliance piece. It’s hard. Ally takes and does the heavy lifting for us with compliance, caregiver disbursements, and scheduling. It allowed me to start the business while working a full-time job at the same time. I wouldn’t be able to do this without the platform. Marrying the Ally app with the platform has been key for our team.
From an industry perspective, technology plays a large role. I’m currently looking into technology like a text alert platform so the client knows a caregiver is on the way, like when a technician says they’re 30 minutes away with a picture of themselves.