Medical practices are dealing with increased responsibilities, wider service provision, and tighter bottom lines. In this context, every decision, minute, and dollar count. But without robust benchmarking, it’s impossible to know how your practice is performing and where gains can be made. Here’s how to measure your clinic’s performance and use it to drive future success.
Measure the Right Things
Not all healthcare data is readily accessible or measurable. Some information might be spread across multiple systems or improperly filed, such as claims data. And some practices might still be using analog systems or digital solutions without robust reporting functionality.
While switching to integrated digital solutions is an easy way to put more data at your fingertips, working with the data that you have can still provide information about things such as:
- Average turnaround times on new patient applications or claims processing
- Document volumes for claims and payments
- Types of service provided
- Staff, physician, and patient satisfaction
- Costs and overheads – and associated changes
Consider which areas you most want to improve and focus on those. If retaining patients is your goal, look at data such as patient reviews and appointment lead times. If reducing overheads is a consideration, look at your lease costs and explore options.
You can use a combination of quantitative and qualitative data to provide a more complete picture of the overall performance of your practice – and plan accordingly.
Look Beyond Your Own Practice
Your own data gives you a sense of how your practice is performing. But it doesn’t necessarily show how it’s performing against other practices in the area or in your specialization. Look further afield to data such as marketplace studies, academic research, and government databases to get a sense of what market-leading achievement looks like.
Identifying best practices and top performers in your field and seeing where your practices diverge creates an opportunity for new behaviors and programs designed to improve efficiencies, reduce costs, and boost staff morale. But ensure that you consider each of these programs in a holistic way to drive overall improvement to your practice – not just as a series of cost-cutting measures.
Be Realistic and Collaborative
When introducing a new program, understand that there is always resistance to change and that there might be friction between practitioners and administrators, who measure success in different ways.
Be mindful of what expectations you’re placing on staff and leaders, how much change is involved, and how quickly. Explain the purpose of each shift, provide appropriate training and all essential resources, and give people time to bridge the gaps between old and new approaches. Additionally, ensure that any new goals are incremental, reasonable, attainable, and measurable and that staff isn’t being set up for failure. Attempt to overcome friction by providing incentives – for example, hiring approvals – when milestones are achieved. And open communication channels so that staff and practitioners can provide feedback or ask questions.
Success is At Your Doorstep
Success in the healthcare industry is about more than the bottom line. It occurs with quality patient outcomes, staff and practitioner satisfaction, and a commitment to providing personalized, cutting-edge care. At Gittleson Zuppas Medical Realty, we know that one way to elevate your practice while improving margins is to reconsider your practice’s address. As specialists in medical real estate, we can help you find the right space, negotiate lease terms that work for you, and help you run the numbers that can mean you meet – or exceed – those key benchmarks. For more information, get in touch with our expert team.