Balancing act: Setting key performance indicators for practice success
Creating a successful healthcare practice can be a balancing act – between looking at the big picture of your business vision and direction, the planning and strategy to get you there, then tracking and measuring the steps you and your team take towards your goals.
This is where key performance indicators (KPIs) come in. KPIs are the financial and non-financial performance measurements that reflect your definition of practice success. By breaking down your practice operations into key success indicators, you simplify what are sometimes complex concepts – such as financial performance – making them measurable and achievable.
First, you need to identify your practice’s key indicators for success. Then it’s a matter of regularly reviewing them to track progress, or where you need to make changes. An online practice management platform such as PracticeHub is especially valuable to help you set, track and share your KPIs.
Focus on a ‘balanced scorecard’ of 4 key performance areas
Financial success is not the only measure of a healthy practice. It’s one of four areas that need to be balanced and in alignment with your practice’s vision and strategy, so you can measure your team’s performance in meeting your goals:
- patient perspective
- internal process
- learning and growth.
Let’s look at each of these four areas.
The outcome of this KPI determines what you do over the next month or quarter, and what adjustments you may need to make to meet your business plan and strategic goals. Track and measure figures including:
- your fees, pricing and staff costs
- how your budget compares to actual revenue and expenses
- gross profit and net profit, to see your business performance. (This is an easy number for practice directors to understand, and influences their decision making.)
Your practice exists for its patients. Measuring their experience of your services helps you serve them better, improving your reputation and potentially attracting new patients. You should track and improve elements of the patient journey such as:
- waiting time – how can you reduce this, and the potential for complaints?
- booking methods: online vs phone – online is cheaper. Can you increase those bookings?
- cancelled appointments, ‘no shows’, walk-ins – tracking these and how you manage them helps improve the patient experience and your reputation
- billing processes – which are the most streamlined for staff and patients?
- compliments vs complaints. Tracking both helps you see ways to add value and areas for improvement.
Use of social media is an important part of the patient perspective and managing your practice reputation. Using PracticeHub, you can create a social media policy – your processes and expectations for the practice and individual team members in adhering to protocols such as Ahpra’s advertising and social media guidelines.
Tracking and measuring your practice processes helps improve productivity, reduce patient waiting time and maintain clinic quality, from equipment to infection control and hygiene. And managing your internal processes is where PracticeHub shines.
Using PracticeHub, your policies and procedures become a living document, where your team can make suggestions for improvement to processes, giving them a sense of ownership and engagement, which in turn enhances your staff performance KPIs.
Establishing a quality improvement register in PracticeHub encourages an open communication culture where staff can collaborate on risk management and reduction strategies, which enhances your KPIs around patient perspective and practice reputation.
Learning and growth
Measuring staff engagement in training and assessing their capabilities ensures your practice processes run smoothly so you’re always providing excellent service to your patients.
With PracticeHub, you can track team roles and responsibilities so that their position descriptions reflect what their actual roles are. Set dates to review these roles, and change staff position descriptions as needed. In the Tasks app, you can assign responsibilities that are centrally displayed in the dashboard, so everyone knows who does what, and due dates for tasks.
You can assign staff learning and track their progress in PracticeHub too, where a user has to complete a quiz, so you have evidence they’ve completed and understood the training. You have peace of mind that your team is committed to improvement and upskilling, they feel valued and that you’re investing in their growth and development.
Our recent webinar, ‘Setting Key Performance Indicators – identifying and measuring KPIs for practice success’ has more tips. Watch the replay here.
Persons implementing any recommendations contained in this publication must exercise their own independent skill or judgment or seek appropriate professional advice relevant to their own particular practice. Compliance with any recommendations will not in any way guarantee discharge of the duty of care owed to patients and others coming into contact with the health professional or practice. Avant and PracticeHub are not responsible to you or anyone else for any loss suffered in connection with the use of this information. Information is only current at the date initially published. © Avant Mutual Group Limited 2021.