Distinguishing a brand as an employer of choice among healthcare staff

Portrait of satisfied elderly patient in wheelchair and caring caregiver

Client’s Industry: Healthcare, senior Care

Client: Valley Senior Living

Client’s Challenge

Valley Senior Living operates three locations in a rural community in the Upper Midwest. Nine hundred employees provide multiple levels of care to 500-plus residents. The levels of care provided include skilled nursing, memory care, basic care, assisted living and independent living. As with many employers, and especially healthcare employers, the demand for staff has been extremely high. Valley Senior Living was experiencing the same hiring challenges, despite having a loyal and dedicated workforce. Additional staff needed to be hired to cover the natural attrition of staff, and other employee absences. The challenge was how to attract candidates to apply for skilled and unskilled positions.


The leadership at Valley Senior Living partnered with Prime46 to help understand what employees found most attractive about working at the facilities, what kept them there, and what made them most happy. Prime46 proposed and executed a series of voluntary small group discussions with existing employees to talk about work life within the facilities, why they find their jobs fulfilling, and what they appreciated most about Valley Senior Living. The discussions were held virtually, observing the organization’s safety protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic. The conversations were recorded and analyzed for key themes and verbatim comments.


The study provided a benchmark of the attitudes and opinions of the workforce from three key groups, including verbatim comments from the discussion group participants. The results included specific items that employees valued most and the benefits of being employed at Valley Senior Living that distinguished the brand from other employers. With these results, leadership at Valley Senior Living was able to:

  • Direct communication efforts to focus on key attributes that employees find most valuable
  • Identify the best methods to reach job candidates with the right message
  • Develop an internal communication strategy to recognize their best employees


Prime46 helped the client by establishing a method to model top employees within the organization as a means to effectively identify and reach similarly qualified job candidates. By knowing which employee attributes and attitudes were already valued, the organization was able to effectively focus their efforts on certain key messages via communication channels familiar to the top job prospects.

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