Tackling unpredictable workforce availability for better care outcomes

Client name:



Health & aged Care

Client challenge: 

To provide reliable staff coverage, improve the quality and safety of care, and increase customer and staff satisfaction

Grant Thornton services:

Workforce and Planning Advisory and Data Analytics

Find out more Michael Roberts


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“Our solutions helped the client gain a greater understanding of workforce limitations and develop a higher quality, safer and more sustainable model of care.”

Michael Roberts - Director, Grant Thornton Consulting

The quality and safety of the consumer experience in health and aged care is significantly shaped by the front-line care and support team. Disruption to predictable staff coverage is a widespread issue in the sector, impacting the quality of care and service, increasing costs, and reducing staff satisfaction. Our analysis and re-design of a workforce model and roster process has helped turn this problem around. 


Client challenge:

Our client faced issues that are common in health and aged care: high rates of casual and part-time staff, difficulty in meeting growing demand, problematic management of leave and staff turnover; high levels of wear and tear on key staff; and gaps in staff coverage. 

These issues played out daily in a number of ways - inability to manage in times of peak demand, management time diverted to short-term staff replacement, concern about increased clinical risk, disruption to planned activities like training and staff support, chaotic shifts, and loss of staff morale and confidence. 

The solution:

Our depth of knowledge in the health and aged care industry, combined with leading data analytical capability was crucial. We were able to provide powerful insights for staff, front line leaders and senior management, and help them develop new ways to better manage these complex and interconnected problems. 

Our workforce ream identified day-to-day staffing trends and availability, conducted extensive analysis and used visual data to review rosters and leave plans and compare them with what actually occurred. We modelled numerous rosters and staffing scenarios, and determined the budget impacts of proposed changes, to ultimately develop a redesigned workforce model and roster process. 

The outcome

By gaining new insight into its workforce unpredictability, staffing trends, and availability, our client has the tools to minimise the impact of these issues moving forward. Understanding the workforce limitations have led to the development and implementation of a more sustainable model of service delivery, with greater reliable shift coverage and the ability to more effectively determine appropriate staffing levels. Our client is achieving a better balance between service delivery needs, costs, and staff preferences. 

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