What’s the Difference Between Quality Staffing Standards and Productivity Metrics?

My job provides me with the opportunity to talk with our clients about their successes, and what a privilege that is. Getting a behind-the-scenes look at how Anderson Regional Medical Center was able to reduce their labor costs by 6% has been a true pleasure. They are a smart, savvy group that has been willing to share their success story so that other health systems can apply the lessons they’ve learned to achieve their own success.

Anderson Regional had a very specific goal: control labor costs. They recognized that their approach of using analytics and technology to develop productivity metrics and then providing the tools to managers to be accountable for those productivity metrics could deliver a solid ROI.

They also recognized that this project needed to address more than labor costs – it was equally important to maintain or even improve the high quality of care their community expects and deserves. One key success factor in their project was their mindset regarding the productivity metrics. Because setting productivity metrics can carry a negative connotation of having to do more with less, they looked beyond ‘productivity metrics’ to develop ‘quality staffing standards’.

More than just semantics, establishing ‘quality staffing standards’ rather than ‘productivity metrics’ helped to ensure that quality of care stayed at the forefront of the entire initiative. That helped to keep everyone engaged with the project, from staff nurses to nurse managers to the executive team.

To learn more about Anderson Regional Medical Center’s success story, check out this case study.


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