Hiring and Retaining the Best Lifeguards
Having the right lifeguards is important for every pool environment. But let’s face it, the hiring process can be stressful! Let the pool management experts at American Pool help! We have the right tools and knowledge to successfully hire the best candidates. Plus, once we find the right candidates we know how to keep them!
It’s important to have the most up to date knowledge on the best ways to find and hire lifeguard candidates. As lifeguard hiring experts, American Pool knows lifeguarding retention rates will never be 100% due to the seasonal nature of the job, and because most candidates are high school and college students.
In 2010, American Pool established its Guard for Life program as a way to streamline the recruiting and hiring of the best lifeguards. We’ve put together the best training programs, incentives, and awards to attract top candidates. Guard for Life has quickly become a community for our guards across the United States. It’s this inclusive environment that keeps our guards coming back year after year and referring their friends to join the team too!
Utilize Local Schools
Our recruiters take advantage of recruiting events at local high schools, colleges, and universities to find great lifeguarding candidates. The students are typically around the perfect life-guarding age, and they are usually looking for seasonal jobs during the summer months when schools are on breaks. Our marketing team creates flyers and other materials for us to put up around campus informing students of job opportunities, but we also partner with schools. High schools often have activities coordinators, counselors, and swim coaches who can inform students of lifeguarding opportunities. We also partner with college career centers to get candidates notified and interested. Our recruiting staff attends job fairs hosted by the schools or creates hiring events on campuses to get students excited about lifeguarding. This way, the students meet with us face to face creating lasting impact and interest.
Finding Qualified Candidates
After finding interested, potential lifeguards, we make sure they are qualified for the job. Lifeguards must be formally tested on swimming skills, CPR, first aid, AED, and emergency oxygen administration. American Pool partners with the American Red Cross and trains over 7,500 lifeguards nationwide each year. Last year the American Red Cross recognized us as the 6th largest provider of new lifeguard certifications in the U.S! Five of our regional offices trained over 200 new lifeguards each! In order to lifeguard with American Pool, all new lifeguards must complete the following training:
- The Lifeguard Pretest: This course allows Lifeguard Instructors to assess the swimming and breathing skills of potential lifeguards. All lifeguards must complete this before moving on to the complete lifeguard training course.
- Lifeguard Training: This 25-hour training course prepares new lifeguards to prevent, recognize, and respond to aquatic emergencies and to provide care during breathing and cardiac emergencies.
- CPR/AED Training: This course provides professional-level training to rescuers to respond to breathing and cardiac emergencies in adults, children, and infants until more advanced medical personnel take over.
Once successfully completed, the certification remains valid for 2 years and all American Pool lifeguards will have knowledge on the following skills:
- Responsibilities of a lifeguard
- Facility Safety
- Effective Surveillance
- Injury Prevention
- Emergency Action Plans
- Water Rescue Skills
- Victim Assessment Prior To Providing Care
- Breathing Emergencies, including CPR
- Cardiac Emergencies, including the use of an AED
- First Aid
- Caring for head, neck and spinal injuries
Retaining the Best Lifeguards
Our lifeguards are the best around, and we want to keep them! We know that lifeguard retention can be tricky due to the seasonal nature of the job, and the young ages many of our employees. But we try to sustain our lifeguard teams as much as possible. Here’s how American Pool retains the best lifeguards!
We Get to Know Our Lifeguards!
It sounds simple, but sometimes the importance of learning your team is overlooked. Prior to the beginning of the season, supervisors have a chance to get to know each lifeguard personally.
We believe building these relationships will make our lifeguards want to come to work, and therefore naturally increase retention.
We Make Our Lifeguards Feel Valued
Recognition plays a big role in retention. At American Pool, we know it is important to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of our lifeguards.
Once the summer season kicks off we hold events for our guards. We believe hard work should be rewarded. Our Summer to Win program gives lifeguards the chance to win prizes by meeting employee goals and expectations. Our Lifeguard of the Month and Lifeguard of the Year distinctions encourage current and future talent. Our active social media community allows lifeguards to participate in nationwide team building events like designing a t-shirt for Lifeguard Appreciation week, or voting on prizes. During Lifeguard Appreciation week we host ice cream socials, pizza parties, and other fun events to make staff feel valued.
With the help of American Pool’s pool management services, hiring and retaining the best lifeguards is made simple. We know that if we treat our lifeguards well and truly invest in creating a positive work experience for them, retention rates will be high. Happy lifeguards will remain loyal. Learn more about how American Pool’s pool management services can help find and retain the best lifeguards for your community!