This article was featured in the April 2016 Issue of MD News Minnesota, a publication “about + from + for physicians”. Click the image to view as a PDF. The article and other resources for medical practices can be found online here, or visit minnesota.mdnews.com. Article reprinted with permission.
A key performance indicators (KPIs) dashboard is a tool that allows you to easily monitor your medical practice’s performance, challenges and opportunities. Understanding your KPIs and comparing them to previous months or available industry data enables you to make strategic decisions and plan for the future.
Most medical practices we work with present to management and practice stakeholders on a monthly and yearly basis; however, we also see effective daily or weekly dashboards that track both good and bad trends. Such vigilance facilitates preventing any undesirable movement before it develops into a full-blown crisis.
So KPIs are important, but where to begin?
The list of KPIs worth analyzing and observing can seem endless, so the key is to start with a set of indicators that will have the greatest impact on your financial performance. A conversation with practice management and business advisors can help you develop your own list of indicators based on your unique challenges, opportunities and strategic goals. This will grab the attention of your management group or shareholders as well, since you’ll have some simple data charts and tracking behind some of your most talked-about areas.
Best KPIs to start with and monitor daily/weekly
As a starting point, we recommend these specific KPIs be monitored and reviewed on daily or weekly basis:
Adding context and historical data to monitor trends
Take the time to incorporate historical data for comparison. You should be able to tell what each indicator read at the same time last year and how it changed from the previous week and year. Considering the use of other industry data will give you a better sense of how your practice compares to other practices in your specialty.
Take action beyond analysis
Don’t allow your KPIs to be another report or email that sits on your desk or in your inbox. Make sure you actually do something with your KPI information. The ultimate goal of the KPI dashboard is to improve your practice’s performance and profitability. Use the monitoring results to uncover areas of underperformance and take steps to turn them around. Like driving a car, watching a KPI dashboard may not get you to your destination on time, but it can keep you from breaking down unexpectedly.
Knowledge is power: Turn it into patient and provider satisfaction as well as profits.
For more information on how to develop financial management insights for your medical practice and guidance on developing effective dashboard reports, contact Libby Hornibrook | Healthcare Practice Group Leader.