Employment and Community First CHOICES Workforce QuILTSS Initiative Survey 2020: Year Three Report
2020 Direct Support Workforce State Overview
94% of services are provided in the Middle region, 4% in the East region, and 2% in the West region. Services are provided in 1,431 service sites in 28 organizations, including 59% family or individual homes, 20% agency or facility sites, 18% job sites, and 3% other sites. 3,039 people received services. 3,530 DSPs, 212 FLSs, 104 managers, 328 administrative, and 217 other employees than those previously listed were employed.
Of the 27 organizations who responded to employment types of DSPs, 3% were on call or temporary employees, 34% were part-time, and 63% were full-time. 68% of DSPs worked across more than one service type. Service types may include ECF CHOICES, DIDD Waiver, Vocational Rehabilitation, and CHOICES (Non-ECF CHOICES).
The overall vacancy rate for DSPs in 28 organizations was 18%. 38% of part-time positions and 19% of full-time positions were vacant.
Overall, there was 73% annual DSP turnover in 27 organizations reporting. Of those DSPs who left their positions in 2020, 48% left within 0-6 months of hire, and 22% left within 6-12 months of hire. The top three reasons for DSP departure were as follows: 85% “found another job at another company,” 67% “no call/no show,” and 59% “pay too low, needed better pay.”
30 organizations reported wage data. The average hourly starting DSP wage was $10.72, the average hourly DSP wage was $11.50, and the average highest DSP wage was $13.56. 16% of organizations paid DSPs different wages across service types.
On average, 32% of DSPs in an organization were enrolled in health care plans. For full-time DSPs, 65% of organizations offered paid time off, 20% offered sick leave, 25% offered paid vacation, and 81% offered health insurance. For part-time DSPs, 4% of organizations offered paid time off, 0% offered sick leave, 0% offered paid vacation, and 19% offered health insurance. Organizations that were unable to distinguish between part- and full-time DSPs answered for “all DSPs.” For all DSPs, 33% of organizations offered paid time off, 25% offered sick leave, 50% offered paid vacation, and 67% offered health insurance.
A total of 81,862 hours of overtime were paid out to DSPs in the last 30 days from 28 organizations.
Of the 29 organizations reporting, the average starting frontline supervisor (FLS) annual salary was $32,430. The average FLS annual salary was $34,780. The average highest FLS annual salary was $39,333.
There was 17% overall annual FLS turnover in 27 organizations reporting. Of those FLSs who left their positions in 2020, 18% of FLSs left within 0-6 months of hire, and 19% left within 6-12 months of hire.
The overall vacancy rate for FLSs in 26 organizations was 12%.
In East Tennessee, of the 26 organizations who reported, 19% closed due to government mandate. 31% of organizations furloughed or laid off staff, 15% of organizations eliminated staff positions, and 15% of organizations cut staff hours. 58% relocated staff to another setting and 23% of organizations had staff living in residences to slow COVID-19 spread. 38% of organizations listed another experience during the pandemic.
Of the 30 organizations reporting, 80% of organizations were short-staffed due to the pandemic and 67% hired new staff due to the pandemic. Of those new staff, 26% of organizations gave staff regular training, 68% reported additional COVID-19 training, and 5% reported that staff received no training at all.
In 29 organizations, 59% reported that they gave a monetary bonus to all DSPs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Of those that gave DSPs a monetary bonus, 24% gave a $0.01-$1.00 per hour bonus, 24% gave a $1.01-$2.00 per hour bonus, 6% gave a $2.01-$3.00 per hour bonus, 17% gave a $3.01+ per hour bonus, and 29% gave a lump sum bonus. 88% of organizations report that there is an end date for the wage increase.