By Susan Saldibar

Back in the 1990s when my dad was ill with lung cancer, he used to go online and participate in a special “forum” of other older guys with cancers of various types. It was an unusual move for someone suspicious of anything that required sharing personal information, especially online. 

But the value Dad got from that forum far outweighed his reluctance to use the technology to connect him to it. In fact, he loved it.

The Takeaway

Seniors need their own personal reason to use technology.

And nobody knows that like the folks at Caavo (a Foresight partner). If you haven’t already checked out Caavo, now is the time to do so

In a nutshell, they have created an amazing device that transforms any TV into an interactive communication hub, among other things (and there are lots of “other things”). I never knew you could squeeze so much out of a TV until I spoke with the Caavo team.

But as valuable as the Caavo technology is, they tell me that they often see a lot of fear and anxiety in residents when the training session begins. (Don’t screw around with my TV, right?) 

And Then

A training team member sits next to a resident and hands them a remote. They click. Some new options appear on their TV screen—options that connect them to loved ones and stuff they love. Caavo trainers say it takes about five to 10 minutes. Then a smile, a nod. Because they can see and touch the value.

Here are a few of Caavo’s real-life five-to-10 minute stories:

  • One resident’s wife was going into hospice. The Caavo trainer explained how the family would be able to video call to the TV to connect with her in her final days. It moved him to tears.
  • Another resident was going to the dining room for breakfast either too early or too late. So his Caavo trainer set his TV to pop up a reminder five minutes before mealtime. Now he’s on time.
  • The daughter of a visually impaired resident was thrilled to learn that her mom could use her voice to control the TV independently (and that she herself could also control the TV remotely, through a smartphone app, if/when needed).
  • To show her how the app worked, the Caavo staff, from another room, was able to send a photo of her grandkids to her TV during training. It made her an instant fan.
  • Another resident was excited that she didn’t have to go all the way down to the lobby only to find out that the bridge game was canceled for the day. Her TV would tell her.

These are huge benefits for residents (and overburdened staff). And that’s why face-to-face training is so important. Caavo works hard to make sure everyone sees the value for themselves.

Here’s the back end to what Caavo does to bring about these fantastic stories:

1. They train their trainers.

And they do it in small groups to make sure staff understands everything the technology can do (and there’s a lot it can do). This makes it easier to brainstorm ideas as to how Caavo can save them time (like remote check-ins).

They also identify internal champions to be super-users. This is key to keeping everyone tied to the benefits (like time savings) of using the technology.

2. They train residents in very small groups. 

The old school, large group training format just magnifies fear and anxiety and can quickly spiral in a negative direction. Small groups and one-on-one training help dial in residents to how the technology benefits them personally.

3. They include family members. 

Because Caavo’s features are so beneficial to families, getting them on board early is important. They’ll even do group Zoom training so families can join when convenient. It makes a huge difference.

4. They make ongoing training fun!

One of Caavo’s client communities had some fun ideas for how to gamify the new technology for both residents and staff. They started with a friendly competition encouraging families to send pictures to their loved one’s TV. The resident who received the most pictures won! They spotlighted the winners in a flier, which got more hesitant residents to use it. They did a similar contest with staff members. And, since Caavo has back-end analytics to track all this, it was easy to keep tabs on the adoption levels.

Why doesn’t everybody train users this way?

Kudos to the Caavo team for not only creating a fantastic application but for making it personal. And for understanding that, for all of us, technology is only wonderful when we can use it to do something wonderful.

The best way to learn about all that Caavo TV can do is to get a demo, which you can do here.