Suppose you are on a PIT to evaluate an HCO’s goal-setting processes.
What criteria should the processes meet?
How could the criteria be measured?
How hard would it be to benchmark them?
Beyond the measures, what else would you do to identify opportunities for improvement in the process?
Discussion: Evaluating an HCO’s Goal Setting Process
Criteria that the Process Should Meet
The HCO’s goal-setting process should meet four main criteria. The first is that the annual goals must stay within the long-range fiscal plan as well as within the strategic plan and the yearly environmental survey. Second, the operating and budget goals should be looked at as an integral whole, rather than as single independent entities. Moreover, the goals set by line managers must be realistic and subject to continuous improvement. Lastly, the data quality, as well as budget processes, should be such that they can be improved annually.
How the Criteria could be Measured
The criteria can be measured using a number of references or measures, of which four include trends, values, benchmarks, and competitor and industry comparisons. Other common ways of evaluating whether the criteria are being met are operational scorecards, continuous improvement needs, and negotiated objectives and goals (White & Griffith, 2010).
Challenges in Benchmarking the Measures
Goal-setting and performance improvement process often seek to address many and intricately linked tasks and issues simultaneously, and this will make it difficult to benchmark the measures and set goals. Furthermore, some benchmarks, especially on productivity, cost, demand, and output, may not be readily available, making benchmarking almost impossible.
What I would do to identify opportunities for improvement in the process
Beyond these measures, the first thing I would do to identify opportunities for process improvement is to perform a value-added analysis by involving everyone (employees, customers, and other key stakeholders) in every stage of the process (White & Griffith, 2010). In this sense, I will be able to obtain feedback and viewpoints regarding what needs to be improved. Additionally, I would regularly conduct employee surveys to understand their satisfaction with the process and goals and what they are thinking about them.
White, K. R., & Griffith, J. R. (2010). The well-managed healthcare organization. Chicago: Health Administration Press.