Today, there is an urgency to improve patient collections. You have thoughtfully created your collection policy and procedures to meet your goals. Now what? The two keys to success that cannot be found in a written policy are your staff and your company culture. Learn how your culture impacts collection results.
Assume you have the best employees. Culture can be the X-Factor that accelerates collections. Culture is the beliefs, assumptions and attitudes that guide what’s acceptable behavior and what’s not. When you hear, “That’s how we we’ve always done it,” that’s your culture talking. When you create a culture that supports your policy and procedures, you will optimize staff efficiency and recovery results.
Here are five best practices to help introduce your new culture:
- Continuously communicate your collection policy and procedures. Your employees must understand what you are trying to accomplish. This understanding will help establish accountability at every level.
- Realize that culture has a huge impact on results. It impacts your employee’s attitude, effort and engagement at work.
- Include your staff in the planning. If you do, it will be easier for them to help implement the changes in your culture and support your goals. Culture change is time-consuming, but well worth the effort. What actions should stop, what actions should start and what actions should be continued to reach your goals? Also, focus on attitude and personal-interaction protocols, which can make a huge difference in fostering a cohesive team and positive company representatives.
- List and prioritize the changes and train your staff on how to implement them.
- Monitor, measure and encourage. Offer positive reinforcement, such as “Caught in the Act” recognition. Create short-term wins. Review each employee’s adherence and contribution to the culture during your regular one-on-one meetings.
When completed, employees should be able to explain, “My job is to do X and here’s how I do it.” This helps demonstrate how individual daily actions help achieve the company’s bottom line.
By Anne Orrick, COO, Allegiance Group
As seen in HME News, December 21, 2018