Popularity of Tech Concierges Grows

CAST | June 14, 2022 | by Donna Childress

This tech support/activity director hybrid helps residents use devices for engagement, health, and more.

As the pandemic has brought more older adults to technology, more senior living organizations have turned to tech concierges to provide resident tech support. Tech concierges help residents use devices to connect with friends and family, monitor health, and the like.
 
Yet there is a key difference from traditional tech support. Tech concierges need to have a friendly, approachable rapport with residents, explained a recent Senior Housing News article, “Senior Living Operators Take Cues From Apple’s ‘Genius Bar’ With Tech Concierge Roles.

Expanding Role

To show the rising importance of this role, the article cites Watermark Retirement Communities in Tucson, AZ. Watermark is moving to tech concierges in each of its 67 communities, up from a single tech concierge not long ago.
 
Maplewood Senior Living in Westport, CT, is using tech concierges to introduce more-advanced technologies. There, “tech concierges are part of a holistic effort to improve resident health outcomes by using sensor systems, AI, and robotics,” said the article. A Maplewood community in New York City depends on the tech concierge to connect residents with the Alli tech suite of “virtual reality, auditory enhancement services, resident safety systems, and live streaming classes.” In introducing this sophisticated technology, relationship-building between the tech concierge and residents is key.
 
The article noted that some organizations folded tech concierge costs into their normal staffing budget. David Lafferty, chief information officer for The RiverWoods Group, told Senior Housing News that residents’ monthly service fees pay for the tech concierges.
 
Lafferty also shared that “he sees a day fast approaching when substantially all senior living staff must be trained and competent with all of the technology used in a community.”

LeadingAge CAST Resident Technology Guide and Case Studies

The Resident/Client Technology Support and Training White Paper and Guide from LeadingAge CAST is an excellent resource for organizations considering a tech concierge program. Released in early 2021, it presents various support, training, and business models for providing resident/client technology support. 

If you are interested in learning more about how providers are providing technical support and training, please check out the Resident Technology Support and Training Case Studies