Harmony Healthcare Blog

Top 5 Tips to Enhance Time Management for Census Development

Posted by Annie Osteen on Tue, Jul 19, 2016

Edited by Kris Mastrangelo

time_management.jpgTime Management is one of the key building blocks for operational excellence.  In a business environment that is constantly accelerating, many executives and managers are dealing with “Time Famine”--- too little time to accomplish the necessary tasks. 

I have worked for both the “Mom and Pop” and “Corporate Entities” astutely exposed to the well-built “pros” and ill-fated “cons” of each composition.

“Corporate Entities”, when devised strategically, minimize a top-heavy hierarchy.  They staff with the “best of the best” utilizing home offices and satellite spaces affording seamless support to their network of facilities while pivoting expeditiously before census concerns are transparent to the non-trained eye.  A portion of the corporate chains recognize that in order to grow, they must avoid micro-management and foster facility level independence allowing Administrators and Nursing to complete their jobs without endless amounts of unnecessary paperwork, thereby improving efficiency and patient care. 

“Mom and Pop” structures are smaller, locally owned facilities with its fair share of “pros” and “cons”.  I have come to find that these facilities tend to be more receptive to the idea of new, inventive and unconventional methods of marketing and census development.  The seasoned and well-informed ones strive to hire competent department heads and empower them to get the job done effectively and efficiently.

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I understand that not all facilities fit perfectly into the above two categories and that there is vast diversity among SNFs and ALFs across the country.  However, one aspect that they all have to navigate is time management.  Federal and State Regulations are constantly changing and shifting the energy and focus from patient care to policy adherence.  This diverts the coveted and revered one-on-one time with families and residents.  Required paperwork and timelines override customer service and the “extras” of care ultimately influencing census development.  

Time management is always a difficult topic to address when in the midst of problem solving the inordinate day-to-day tasks.  How does a facility address census concerns when time is at a premium? 

Top 5 Tips to Enhance Time Management for Census Development

  • Implement consistent, daily meetings to discuss census.
  • Hire “Secret Shoppers” to drill down on immediate fixes.
  • Articulate and constantly message internally and externally the facility strengths.
  • Review successes and failures with all staff as “teachable moments”.
  • Garner feedback from entire facility on areas to be better. 

Understanding what makes a facility “tick” involves taking a step back, evaluating existing patient’s demographics, and how these variables influence census. 

If you have questions about your facility's census, please contact Harmony Healthcare International by clicking here or calling our office at (800) 530-4413. 

Annie Osteen has been involved in healthcare marketing and business development for the past 15 years.  She is originally from Tampa, Florida and went to Florida State University.  She currently lives with her husband and five children in Franklin, TN. 

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Tags: Census, Census Development, Time Management

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