LearnWell

(Formerly Education, Inc.)

The Company

LearnWell provides specialized teachers, tutors, and programs to school-aged patients at behavioral health hospitals, eating disorder programs, addiction treatment centers, medical hospitals, and homebound programs.

Upwards of forty hospital systems in eight states outsource to LearnWell. The company has 130 employees including 20 at the corporate level.

No. of Employees: 130
Industry: For-Profit Non-Traditional Education

Highlights:

  • Improvement from 12% to 76% A Player teachers hired
  • Improvement from 23% to 76% A Players hired in corporate staff
  • 15-20 hours saved each recruitment cycle by not screening low performers
  • Growing clientele and increased profit
Photo courtesy of learnwelleducation.com
Photo courtesy of learnwelleducation.com

Solutions

Topgrading enters the LearnWell hiring process after the descriptive phone calls. From 50 teacher applications, approximately 25 candidates are asked to complete the Career History Form. LearnWell reviews the Topgrading Snapshot, which is customized to the organization’s specific needs. The Snapshot allows them to narrow down the pool to 15 to perform Phone Screen Interviews, which has saved the team 15-20 hours each recruitment cycle. Following the phone screens, 5 candidates are invited for the Tandem Topgrading Interview.

After hiring, new teachers are coached extensively with training maps. The teachers prepare lesson plans, compose IDP, and are paired with other teachers for feedback.

"A Player teams hit their budgeted hours, and mixed teams don’t.”

– Ken Munies, CEO

 

“With extraordinary people, we can now expect extraordinary results. Everyday our teachers change the lives of students around the nation.”

– Kathleen Egger

Challenge

At LearnWell, the teacher is the heart of the company. It is a very difficult job to fill; the teaching challenges are vast: 4 hours of teaching and 4 hours of necessary administrative work; “classrooms” are oftentimes multipurpose rooms, a shared space where other activities are run with the patients at the hospitals; in a typical class, 6 students are being taught their own school’s curriculum and the other 6 students are being taught a core subject at 3 different levels; some children might act out and disrupt the class.

Because of the specific challenges of the job, LearnWell’s hiring process includes a phone call to applicants to describe the job position in detail. 50 resumes mean 50 phone calls. New methods would need to improve effectiveness as well as efficiency where possible.

“[The Snapshot] feels like a LearnWell document that produces a guaranteed result.”

– Kathleen Egger, Human Resources Director

Results

Upon their first measurement, out of 25 teachers at LearnWell, 3 (12%) turned out to be A Players. In their sixth year of Topgrading, 68 teachers were hired, of which 52 (76%) turned out to be A Players or A Player Potentials. Of corporate staff, Topgrading improved the number of A Players from 9 out of 40 (23%) to 16 out of 21 (76%). Notably with more A Players, fewer, more effective, staff are needed.

“We’re a for-profit organization; we track teaching hours like billable hours in a law firm. The kids can choose to come to class or not. When you have A Player teachers who have a good curriculum, superior rapport with the hospital, and excellent rapport with the kids, the funding of our organization increases through higher billable hours. A Player teams hit their budgeted hours, and mixed teams don’t.” – Ken Munies, CEO

With more A Players, it has been easier for LearnWell to speak with prospective customers – hospital systems – because they can show they have A Player teachers and that they can manage them effectively. Since Topgrading, LearnWell has been able to get more hospitals on board, and their annual profit margin has increased 5%.

"Since 2008, through Topgrading, our A Players have increased Education, Inc.’s shareholder wealth significantly and made us competitive on a national stage. Topgrading changed my business, and as a small business owner, by extension, Topgrading also changed the quality of my life."

- Ken Munies

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