It’s the start of a new year, which means now is the perfect time to refresh your practice’s processes—everything from how you track patient outcomes and handle patient feedback to how you measure patient retention and staff productivity. To help you with the latter two, we thought we’d devote an entire blog post to the ways analytics reporting will supercharge your practice—that is, the impact that using analytics will have on all aspects of your business. WIthout further ado, here are five ways that keeping tabs on certain key practice metrics will help you be a super boss (adapted from this post and this one).
1. Knowing your cancellation and no-show rates will help you slash them.
This one might seem obvious, but it’s worth leading with, because patients bailing on their therapy appointments can be massively taxing to your operational resources and your bottom line. And without getting a baseline for patient attendance, you won’t know for sure which solutions you implement are actually working, and which ones are a waste of your staff’s time. Plus, having a benchmark and tracking—and celebrating—progress toward a goal can be a great way to boost staff morale and keep your team motivated to continue their efforts to keep patients engaged in their care. And considering that patient dropout is a $6 billion problem plaguing the rehab therapy industry, patient engagement and attendance are huge.
2. Knowing patient volumes for each therapist—and clinic location—can help you allocate next year’s hiring budget.
Burnout is a real issue in a lot of industries—especially health care. In order to keep your staff’s workload reasonable, you’ve got to know the patient volume for your current therapists and locations so you can plan to bring on additional staff as necessary. Knowing these numbers—and observing fluctuations over time—can also help you determine who to bring on (e.g., seasonal personnel or full-time employees) as well as when and where.
You can also dig into these numbers further to help you identify whether a new hire should have a certain specialty. For example, if you notice that most patients seen at your flagship location are showing up with shoulder injuries, you’d want to be sure your new hire is a shoulder expert. And it wouldn’t do much good to bring on new staff members at one practice location when it’s a different one that really needs additional support.
3. Knowing which therapists are top performers can help you dole out raises—and figure out how to bring other therapists up to par.
By monitoring new patient volume by therapist—as well the therapists with the highest number of visits—you’ll know which of your staff members are really performing at their best. That way, you can not only reward your top therapists for their stellar work—who doesn’t love a thank-you bonus or unexpected raise?—but also identify best practices that you could share with your entire team to bring everyone up to par. After all, optimizing productivity and keeping patients engaged throughout their care can significantly boost your practice’s earning potential—and reputation.
That being said, keep in mind that productivity shouldn’t be your only staff performance measure. It’s also important to make sure that high productivity isn’t coming at the expense of a less-than-stellar patient experience. To that end, make sure you’re not only tracking patient outcomes, but also administering patient satisfaction surveys—or better yet, Net Promoter Score® (NPS®) surveys—to keep a pulse on how your patients feel about the level of service they receive at your practice.
4. Knowing average payment rates for each of your in-network insurance companies can help you know when to negotiate or drop a payer contract.
It’s always a good idea to know what you’re getting paid for each service you provide, and that amount can vary pretty dramatically from one payer to another. By knowing your top payers, how much they pay for your most popular services, and how much it costs you to perform those services, you can get a better idea of which insurance companies are—and aren’t—paying you what your worth. From there, you can renegotiate certain contracts—armed with this data as well as outcomes data, of course. And if a particular company isn’t paying you enough to even cover the cost of providing your services, it might be time to go out of network.
5. Knowing your top referral sources will help you plan your next marketing campaign.
While there’s good reason to spend more of your marketing budget on direct-to-patient campaigns, there’s still a need to maintain good relationships with referring providers. Either way, knowing your practice’s top referral sources will help you better allocate your resources to generate new patients. Let’s say, for example, that your data helps you identify a particular provider who usually refers a lot of patients to your practice—but is no longer doing so. You may want to pay that provider a visit and investigate what you can do to provide more value to his or her patients. Or—to return to the topic of direct-to-patient marketing—maybe your referral data shows that you’re receiving a lot of new patients from a Facebook ad that you recently published. In that case, it might be worth increasing your digital marketing spend to expand that ad’s reach.
It’d be nearly impossible—and incredibly resource-intensive—to track all of your practice’s data manually. Good thing you don’t have to. WebPT Members now have access to our enhanced Analytics product, which provides exceptional business intelligence derived from the information they already enter into the WebPT EMR. To see how WebPT Analytics can help you make better, more intelligent business decisions in real time, check out this resource—and schedule a complimentary demo today. If you’re already a WebPT Member and you’d like to learn more about how to use the WebPT Analytics reports to their fullest, check out this article and this one.