Why Senior Living Organizations Embrace Interim Talent

Interim work and interim or contract workers in the senior living and long-term care industry increased significantly during the pandemic.  Now that the health crisis has receded, we can clearly see that the demand for interim staff has not diminished. In fact, it’s grown! Interim professionals are helping senior living and long-term care organizations take talent acquisition to the next level.

Why is the Need for Interim Staff Still Increasing?


Economic Uncertainty. The economy is uncertain causing many senior living and long-term care organizations to be hesitant to commit to permanent hires. Additionally, interim staff provide a flexible staffing solution.


Cost Control. Interims can be more cost-effective when considering benefits and other expenses associated with hiring permanent personnel. Plus, interims can be onboarded quickly with less investment in recruitment and training.


Talent Gap. It’s challenging to locate and land top senior living talent especially for key roles. Today’s large pool of interim talent, including executive-level, makes it easier for senior living organizations to have qualified talent at all levels for business continuity.


-Flexibility. Organizations can quickly bring in expertise to cover their needs without the long-term commitment associated with permanent hires.


Specialized Skills.  Certain projects and tasks require specialized skills that your team may not have. interims with these skills can be brought in quickly to address specific needs.


Short-Term Projects. The pandemic led to the emergence of various short-term projects that continue to be vital including health and safety protocols, digital transformation, infection control, etc.


Testing the Waters.  Some organizations use interim assignments as a way to test potential permanent hires. A “try before you buy” method. At MedBest, one quarter of our interims are offered perm position and accept.


Interim and Contract Workers…Who are They?


Senior living and long-term care interims are highly experienced professionals who provide temporary or short-term staffing solutions within the industry. They are typically hired to fill key roles at senior living communities including assisted living, CCRCs, life plan communities, skilled nursing facilities/nursing homes, and memory care centers.


Interim workers are available on demand to step-in and manage business initiatives of all types and sizes.


Interims can bring back the talent and stability that organizations need in order to compete and grow.


What Traits do Interim Workers Have?


Interim workers in senior living and long term care possess a specific set of traits and characteristics to excel in their roles:


Adaptability. Interims often step into unfamiliar environments. They must quickly adapt to new situations, people, and workplace cultures.


Strong Work Ethic. A strong work ethic is essential since interims must hit the ground running and handle demanding workloads.


Excellent Communication. Effective communication is key for interim workers to understand client expectations and collaborate with existing staff.


Problem Solving Skills. Interims will encounter unique challenges in each assignment that require creative solutions.


Cultural Sensitivity. Interims should respect and adapt to different cultural norms and practices.


Resilience. Interims need the ability to handle stress and maintain composure in high pressure situations especially in fast-paced environments.


Team Player. Interims should be able to collaborate effectively and mesh well with existing teams.


Empathy & Compassion. Interims will be in roles that involve direct interaction with seniors. Therefore, empathy and compassion are vital for providing high quality care and support.


Organizations Skills.  Interims must manage their workload efficiently and ensure that nothing falls through the cracks.


Commitment to Learning. Interim workers should be committed to ongoing learning and professional development.


Interim Executive Roles Often Filled by Interim Senior Living Professionals:


Interim Assisted Living Administrators:  Interim Assisted Living Administrators manage and oversee all operations in residential facilities that primarily accommodate our aging population. Their responsibilities include the coordination of patient care, financial oversight, occupancy development, and the supervision of employees. This key leadership role has the capacity to influence organizational culture, and the quality of care provided.


Interim Nursing Home Administrators: The Interim Nursing Home Administrator is temporarily responsible for running a facility’s day-to-day operations and supervising the business and organizations side of the skilled nursing facility / nursing home. In addition, they will lead in accordance with current federal, state, and local standards, guidelines, and regulations that govern long-term care facilities to assure the highest degree of quality care can be always provided to residents.


Interim Executive Directors:  Interim Executive Directors step-in to primarily run the day -to-day operations, maintain employee and resident relations, and meet regulatory compliance for a continuing care retirement community (CCRC), life plan community or assisted living facility. The interim Executive Director will focus on executive leadership transition, keeping the revenue coming in, and making sure that the organization moves forward without a hitch.


Interim Directors of Nursing: Many times, Interim Directors of Nursing solutions are needed to temporarily fill an open Nurse Leadership position while a senior living facility searches for a permanent hire. The Interim Director of Nursing will direct and coordinate functions of the nursing department and assigned clinical operation departments.


Interim MDS Coordinators: Leadership skills of Interim MDS Coordinators help them to fulfill their short-term management roles. Interim MDS Coordinators will oversee and facilitate the completion of resident assessments at your nursing facility and ensure compliance with Federal and State regulations. They help to minimize any disruption and provide additional support for your clinical team.


Interim Resident Care Directors: Interim Resident Care Directors are temporarily in charge of overseeing residents and staff at a senior living facility. Many are there to help residents with health care, as well as help employees with day-to-day tasks. They also are involved with training new employees, ensuring that improper behavior is corrected, looking into and solving complaints, and carefully monitoring medication allocation.


Interim Wellness Directors. An interim Wellness Director, LPN or RN, ensures the overall well-being and quality of life for residents in senior living communities. Their role encompasses a wide range of duties focused on promoting physical, mental, & emotional health of seniors.

Katie Piperata, NHA, MBA, CPC, Interim Solutions and Leadership Development Trainer, leads MedBest’s Interim Solutions Division. As a seasoned executive in senior living, she understands the industry and has mastered the art of developing and matching top interim leaders with Senior Living organizations in need of short-term coverage. Contact Katie at kpiperata@medbest.com.



MedBest is an award-winning national Executive Search Firm exclusive to the Senior Living / Long Term Care Industry. For more than two decades, we have connected senior living / long term care organizations with exceptional senior living executive talent for both permanent and interim roles. MedBest was named as a Top 10 Interim Services Provider 2023! In addition, we were named one of American’s top companies by Inc.5000 and a Tampa Fast 50 Company!

For more information regarding Interim Solutions, contact byocum@medbest.com/ 727-526-1294 (call or text).

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