In any work environment there is always a need to enhance productivity, and healthcare facilities are no different from retail centers, production lines, or even Wall Street. Many in charge resort to micro-managing employees believing this will enhance production. But this tactic is actually contrary to productivity. When you micro-manage your employees not only are you setting the stage for a hostile work environment but you’re impeding your own productivity in the process. Your staff grows weary of being watched and told what to do and how to do it over the course of their shift, and, disgruntled, they soon leave.
Stopping the micro-management is one way to enhance productivity in your healthcare facility but there are other ways you can improve your work output as well. Below are 7 tips to enhance productivity in your healthcare facility. You can apply these tips to medical practices, hospitals, rehab centers, skilled nursing centers, and the like.
Understand the Work Flow
In order to streamline the different processes of your facility and enhance production it’s necessary to take a step back and analyze your in-place procedures. Be ready to re-evaluate the path of flow and make some changes.
Track document flow through your front office staff. Is there a redundancy that can be eliminated? Where does each document go? How many staff members have touched it? Where is it eventually stored and can the document be easily accessed if the need arises. This will not only give you some insight into how to streamline the employee involvement, but will also allow you to examine your current software and medical records storage.
Patient flow should also be racked to make better use of your medical staff and enhance productivity. Follow he patient from the time they enter the facility until they leave. How many staff members have been assigned to meet the needs of each patient? Are there procedures that can be made more efficient? In order to enhance productivity it’s necessary to understand how your office or facility is currently operating.
Evaluate and Assign Accordingly
Evaluate each staff member’s qualifications compared to the tasks they are assigned. If you have staff members doing work for which they are overqualified, reassign that task to another employee. For instance, don’t expect your RN’s to perform tasks that could easily be handed off to a nursing assistant.
Alleviate the Delegation Process
Cross train your care team and increase flexibility wherever possible. Train your nurses to schedule appointments and train non-medical staff to clean instruments and change out rooms. This serves to keep the flow going in the event of an unexpected absence or sudden emergency that causes you to be short-staffed.
Keep a Positive Atmosphere in Your Facility
No one likes to go to work in a discouraging and depressing environment. Working in healthcare can certainly provide more than it’s share of down days but that doesn’t mean you can’t create a positive environment for your staff. Acknowledge achievements with a handwritten note. Celebrate your employees with a catered office lunch or breakfast. Do what you can to help your staff be of good cheer.
Is your medical records software up to date technologically? Is your patient portal easy to understand? Are the majority of your patients on board with the portal? You can save valuable time when you encourage your patients to complete forms online, update records, obtain lab results, and request referrals via the online tool.
When you update your software make sure you get the most “bang for your buck” by getting the most versatile software available. This will streamline your record keeping, keep you updated on appointments, staff scheduling, and allow you to receive appropriate communication, etc.
Schedule Weekly Meetings
Problem solving and communication across levels of staff is essential to your ability to enhance productivity. You can use your regularly scheduled meetings (weekly is merely a suggestion. Every other week or once a month might work better for your office staff. ) to discuss what’s working best, how to improve, news to report and any changes that might be coming such as new staff or updates to software and procedures.
Day-to-Day Written Communication
In order to enhance productivity in your medical facility you must incorporate written communication. Of course you are going to leave written instructions regarding patient care for the next shift. However, keeping a daily list of tasks somewhere accessible to all the staff is a great way to avoid the micro-management trap. Also consider keeping a list in view of daily menial tasks that any of your employees can perform. Check the list at the beginning and end of each shift or office work day.
Incorporate These Tips to Enhance Productivity
It’s always possible to enhance productivity in your healthcare facility. By making a few easy changes, staying on top of technology, and communicating effectively you can streamline procedures and keep things running smoothly. Incorporate these 7 tips into your healthcare facility’s procedures and you’ll see results very soon.