May 18, 2016

The Key to Maintaining a Strong, Committed Workforce

By Marilyn Reyes, Human Resources Assistant, Chelsea Jewish Lifecare
At the Chelsea Jewish Lifecare (CJF), we strive to maintain a talented workforce of compassionate and caring professionals. Our goal is to provide each of our staff members with a positive and enjoyable work environment, challenging their skills and rewarding their successes. In addition, we try to communicate the fact that the Foundation truly values and appreciates the work of each and every employee.
Active Recruiting
The Human Resources Department is always actively recruiting talented individuals to join the CJF family. In fact, in the last six months, we have hired nearly 100 new professionals! Our current strategy is to recruit through our Campus Career Fairs and website Careers Page, but we also occasionally post available positions on,, and CJF also recruits from surrounding schools for recent graduates in nursing, rehabilitation, social work and more. The Human Resources Department utilizes a thorough on-boarding process that involves several interviews with key management staff; verification of personal and professional references; criminal, background and licensing checks; and verification of required health immunizations. This rigorous process is intended to ensure that our staff is kind, compassionate and trustworthy, embracing the organization’s mission and philosophy. This strategy goes a long way in reducing employee turnover.
Strong Leadership
Leadership at CJF is comprised of three levels of leaders who work together to form one strong and cohesive team: Executive Leadership, Management Staff and Middle Managers. Executive Leadership is made up of the Chief Executive Officer, President, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Clinical Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Business Development. These individuals are responsible for organizational oversight and control within the clinical, financial and operational sectors.  The Management Staff includes all facility and agency Executive Directors, Directors of Nursing/Clinical, Directors of Rehabilitation and Directors of Environmental Services. These managers are responsible for all aspects of the day-to-day operations of their individual facilities and agencies. Middle Managers include the leadership staff that manage employees and delegate daily tasks.
CJF requires all levels of management to attend annual training in order to be a strong and cohesive support system for the organization. This training enables the Leadership Team to provide direction not only to departments and individual staff members, but to the organization as a whole.
Effective Communication
One of many indicators of happy employees in an organization the size of CJF revolves around good communication. This includes communication across campuses and within facilities and departments. The Employee Portal is the main hub for all news and happenings within the organization. Staff can login to view the message board or simply check their personal email for a weekly blast of communication pertaining to their department, facility, or the organization. The message board is interactive and the emails are responsive. Staff can communicate with the Human Resources and Communications departments via message board or email, and also download any necessary company forms from the Portal. Additionally, CJF also relies on print and word-of-mouth communication to disseminate its important messages. All Employee Portal communications and company-wide memos are printed and posted at the time clock areas for those staff members who do not utilize email, smart phones or computers. Management Staff and Middle Managers are responsible for verbally communicating the messages to staff in order to reinforce the messaging and call attention to any action required. These efforts help us bridge the technology gap among a small subset of our workforce and ensure our staff as a whole is informed and aware of the organizational happenings.
Employee Engagement
Engaging employees, recognizing excellence and rewarding dedication are all very important to CJF. We believe that when our staff is engaged, they feel a greater sense of involvement and are more likely to be committed to their jobs. CJF holds various weekly staff meetings within its facilities, but also hosts quarterly “Town Hall Meetings” across its campuses as a way to bridge what’s happening in different locations. We also know that our staff work extremely hard—day in and day out—to provide exceptional services and care. As a result, we try often to show our appreciation.
For example, we provide employee meals at all of our facilities, often ordering celebratory meals for the staff during special occasions. Each year during the summer, the staff is also invited to facility BBQ’s, family-friendly outdoor concerts and even trips to Canobie Lake Park. During each employee’s birth month, they are invited to a lavish dinner at the Capital Grille in Burlington. Lastly, CJF invites its staff members who have been with the company for five years or more on a legacy trip to Las Vegas or Disney World with their families. CJF’s overall goal is to show the staff how much we value them and appreciate their hard work and dedication. After all, our staff is the very core of CJF and, in reality, the real reason why we have emerged as a leader within the New England healthcare industry.