This time of year, checklists help manage the back-to-school madness. They provide structure and direction on preparing for the coming year, especially while parents and students alike are still preoccupied with maximizing the waning days of summer. Checklists are also effective in other areas – they transcend in application and detail the elements required and/or steps to be taken in order to reach a goal.
Love is in the air, and in healthcare, change is always on the horizon. A focus on productivity and workforce optimization may be part of your organization’s 2021 initiatives, but you may be personally struggling with getting behind the proposed strategies. You are not alone – many industry leaders and professionals have a love/hate relationship with performance improvement.
The months leading up to a fiscal year turn can be stressful enough. In light of the current climate, healthcare organizations are faced with even more significant challenges. Any preliminary volume and staffing projections previously in place are now being cast aside and re-evaluated based on new strategies to restore financial stability.
The U.S. Healthcare System is currently wasting an estimated $765 Billion (23% of what is spent) per year due to inefficient operations! Surprisingly, the majority of this waste is not being generated by pricing failures and supply chain issues, but through workflow and labor management deficiencies.
Any healthcare consultant that focuses on productivity will tell you the mixed reactions received when sharing that you have been engaged to improve performance. Why are we, as an industry, conditioned to fear a word that brings value, accountability, and increased efficiencies to hospitals and health systems? Historically speaking, productivity was synonymously linked to a reduction in force or layoff. It is no wonder that just the mention of it could send panic across an organization, especially if previous experiences have left staff feeling lost, defeated, and defensive.
The financial impacts of COVID-19 are unprecedented, crippling the operations of most healthcare organizations and leaving leaders to answer serious questions about strategies for stabilization. One of the quickest, most effective solutions is through workforce optimization. Improving performance by enhancing productivity and implementing processes to control labor costs will help hospitals and health systems to rebound in a systematic way that not only meets patient demand but ensures the right resources are in place to provide the best care.
With personnel expense making up more than half of the total operating cost of most hospitals and health systems, it essential to understand how many FTEs your organization truly needs to run efficiently. A Full-Time Equivalent, or FTE, is the sum of all worked or paid hours divided by the total hours in a pay period. For most organizations, that’s 80 hours per pay period or 2080 hours per year.
Productivity and workforce optimization engagements most often start off with the best of intentions. However, there are common missteps that can lead to undesirable results or negative outcomes. In the latest episode of ALTIUS Answers, CEO Stephanie Dorwart and COO RandiLynn Lukac discuss eight key elements to successful performance improvement! When messaged correctly and managed effectively, productivity engagements can create a positive culture of change focused on accountability and process improvement with a big impact.
New year, new look! ALTIUS is excited to announce that beginning in January of 2020, we will be launching our completely remodeled online client portal, Catalyst. The site will still contain all of the same great tools and features that our clients are accustomed to, but will be enhanced by several new elements that take performance improvement and productivity management even further. With a modernized look and amenities that keep it cutting edge, Catalyst is ready to move into the next decade.
The holidays are a time for indulging and even being a bit gluttonous. For many healthcare organizations, the season also marks the start of the fiscal year-end. While it is difficult not to be pre-occupied with the party-planning, dinner menus, present-buying, and the other personal distractions that come with this time of year, hospital leaders need to be diligent and focused on ensuring that their organizations are poised to successfully meet the demands of 2020! The most significant part of this preparation is a well-planned budget.