10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources: Better Unemployment Claims Management

As ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) face more competition in the marketplace and falling reimbursements, they need to operate as efficiently as possible. Saving money on HR-related costs is one way they can thrive.

MedHQ has worked with over 70 healthcare facility partners to find HR savings that also deliver the benefits of improving employee satisfaction and reducing risk.  Through the process, MedHQ gleaned a host of key findings that guided the creation of the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit (10-Point HR Audit). The 10-Point HR Audit identifies inefficiencies that, when addressed, can result in six-figure savings for a healthcare facility.

One money-saving strategy the audit identified is to better manage the unemployment tax. When an unemployment claim is filed, states lean heavily in favor of the employee. However, there are things a surgery center can do to keep claims minimal.

States have different taxable wage formulas and the rate at which wages can be taxed can vary from 1-7%.

“The tax rate percentage can be negotiated to a lower rate,” said Tom Jacobs, MedHQ CEO. “And not all employers stay on top of this. MedHQ has audited centers with an unemployment tax rate as high as 9% or as low as 3%.”

Centers can save $3,500 – $10,000 annually by better managing unemployment tax.

Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources.”

About the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit
It takes approximately one or two hours for back office staff to gather the information necessary for the 10-Point HR audit. Typical savings = six figures. Request your risk-free 10-Point HR Audit today. If MedHQ fails to identify $25,000 in savings, the audit is free.

10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources: Outsource Prep Work For Open Enrollment

As ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) turn over every stone to find the efficiencies that will help them stay competitive in a changing marketplace, looking hard at HR practices is an excellent place to find savings.

 

One of the simplest ways for an ASC HR department to save money is to outsource the work that is necessary to prepare for the employee benefits open enrollment period. Administering an open enrollment period can take weeks of preparation, costing the department 40-80 hours of productivity.

 

MedHQ has worked with over 70 healthcare facility partners to find HR savings that also deliver the benefits of improving employee satisfaction and reducing risk.  Through the process, MedHQ gleaned a host of key findings that guided the creation of the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit (10-Point HR Audit). The 10-Point HR Audit identifies inefficiencies that, when addressed, can result in six-figure savings for a healthcare facility.

 

Productivity lost on open enrollment preparation and administration can be even higher for surgery centers with more employees and high turnover. More efficient open enrollment preparation, combined with outsourcing the time it takes to evaluate and decide upon benefits renewal, has a pair of advantages:

 

  1. Outsourcing open enrollment work can save a center up to $10,000each year
  2. And, it allowscenter management to stay focused on high-value priorities

 

Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources.”

 

About the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit
It takes approximately one or two hours for back office staff to gather the information necessary for the 10-Point HR audit. Typical savings = six figures. Request your risk-free 10-Point HR Audit today. If MedHQ fails to identify $25,000 in savings, the audit is free.

10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources: Maintaining a Strong Company Culture Can Save Thousands of Dollars

Ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) must be able to operate at maximum efficiency.

Falling reimbursements and more competition for patient volume have squeezed revenue, and proactive centers must find ways to save money. One way to accomplish that is to keep HR costs in line.

MedHQ has worked with over 70 healthcare facility partners to find HR savings that also deliver the benefits of improving employee satisfaction and reducing risk.  Through the process, MedHQ gleaned a host of key findings that guided the creation of the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit (10-Point HR Audit). The 10-Point HR Audit identifies inefficiencies that, when addressed, can result in six-figure savings for a healthcare facility.

One way ASCs can save money and keep employees happy is by maintaining a strong company culture. A strong company culture attracts and retains good employees.

“Centers will foster a stronger culture by recruiting a group of 20 – 40 people who have similar values rather than a group with varying values,” said MedHQ CEO Tom Jacobs. “A strong company culture accompanied by good HR practices, good compensation plans, and good benefits work together to reduce employee turnover.”

An HR partner like MedHQ can perform a trio of duties to help ASC HR departments build stronger cultures.

  1. Help surgery centersdefine their culture and leverage it when hiring top talent
  2. Conduct behavioral interviewing and organizinga peer-reviewed recruiting process
  3. Identify employeeswho are a good fit not only for a particular job but for the company culture

Reducing turnover by one full-time employee translates to $10,000 – $12,000 in savings related to replacement costs. If a center has a 30% annual turnover rate and 30 employees, that’s nine people per year. If the center can cut that rate in half, that equals considerable savings, both in terms of employee recruiting and training.

Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources.”

About the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit
It takes approximately one or two hours for back office staff to gather the information necessary for the 10-Point HR audit. Typical savings = six figures. Request your risk-free 10-Point HR Audit today. If MedHQ fails to identify $25,000 in savings, the audit is free.

10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources: Controlling Compensation Costs Helps ASCs Compete

One way an ASC’s HR department can help a center operate more efficiently in a competitive marketplace is to cut down on costs by utilizing fair compensation programs that will draw desirable and qualified employees. This strategy will also cut down on costly high turnover rates, which can force surgery center management to be in perpetual hiring mode.

 

MedHQ has worked with over 70 healthcare facility partners to find HR savings that also deliver the benefits of improving employee satisfaction and reducing risk.  Through the process, MedHQ gleaned a host of key findings that guided the creation of the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit (10-Point HR Audit). The 10-Point HR Audit identifies inefficiencies that, when addressed, can result in six-figure savings for a healthcare facility.

 

To find compensation savings, MedHQ developed and utilizes a 100-question job analysis guide to understand how much a job is ‘worth’ relative to other jobs. Each job is scored and compared to ASC association data to determine pay. When employees understand the thoughtful, fair process, they are more satisfied and turnover is less likely. Two benefits are:

 

  1. Centers can save $10,000- 12,000 per person by minimizing unwanted turnover
  2. Centers can also save on related replacement costs including advertising,hiring temporary and permanent placement agencies, as well as onboarding new employees.

 

“A good process is to score each job well and then use data from credible sources such as the Ambulatory Surgery Center Association regarding the average pay for specific positions, keeping in mind the same job may be weighted differently at different centers,” said Tom Jacobs, MedHQ CEO. “MedHQ uses the data as a starting point, then takes into account information gleaned from the 100-question job analysis guide to structure compensation guidelines for each surgery center.”

 

Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways to Save $10,000 in Human Resources.”

Becker's ASC | MedHQ

Join MedHQ at Becker’s Annual Meeting: The Business and Operations of ASCs

MedHQ is honored to be attending the 23rd Annual Meeting: The Business and Operations of ASCs hosted by Becker’s ASC Review.

The conference takes place Oct 27-29 at Chicago’s Swissotel, and offers attendees over 100 sessions to choose from. There will be over 200 total speakers, including physicians ASC administrators speaking on a variety of topics. All told, more than 1,000 attendees are expected at the event, which focuses on business, clinical and legal issues faced by ASCs.

Tom Jacobs, CEO of MedHQ, is looking forward to attending the conference and speaking with colleagues about how back office management services, such as human resources (HR) and accounting functions at surgery centers can be given proper attention and provide maximum cost savings. As the ASC market continues to mature, streamlined and cost-conscious HR functions are now a necessity.

“MedHQ is here to help. Small and mid-sized companies don’t usually have access to the expertise of a full human resources or accounting team,” said Jacobs. “For healthcare organizations, this expertise is critical, as more than revenue is at stake. An inefficient HR department, for example, not only wastes money at your facility, but patient satisfaction, surgeon satisfaction, employee satisfaction and the reputation of the entire organization takes a hit.”

Stop by Booth 54, and we can discuss how to cut unnecessary costs from your surgery center’s HR department.

Want to learn more ways to save? Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways Surgery Centers are Wasting Money in Human Resources.”

Automating PTO and other HR tasks can save your organization money

Ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) must be able to operate at maximum efficiency as the industry continues to mature.

Nosediving reimbursements and increasing competition for patient volume have taken a toll on revenue, and centers that want to stay ahead of the game have responded by finding ways to save money. However, most centers are missing one of the top three largest line items, along with building rent and medical supplies, that can keep costs in line. That item is human resources (HR).

To remedy this, MedHQ has worked with over 70 healthcare facility partners to find additional savings that also deliver the benefits of improving employee satisfaction and reducing risk.  Through the process, MedHQ gleaned a host of key findings that guided the creation of the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit (10-Point HR Audit). The 10-Point HR Audit identifies inefficiencies that, when addressed, can result in six-figure savings for a healthcare facility.

In one example of our 10-Point HR Audit, we assess employee paid time off (PTO). Surgery centers can save money by utilizing process automation ideas such as outsourcing PTO administration, and employee self-service (ESS).

ASCs can save in two ways:

  1. A center with three managers can save 100-200 hours per year when those employees are relieved from administrating programs such as PTO, onboarding, offboarding and Occupational Safe and Health Administration (OSHA) reporting.
  2. If these employees earn on average $50 an hour (including taxes and benefits), the savings is $5,000 – $10,000 annually.

“Properly administering PTO in a non-automated environment is incredibly time-consuming for ASC managers who are starving for more time to negotiate better contracts, recruit new physicians or implement a new service line at the center,” said Tom Jacobs, MedHQ CEO. “Managers need to spend time on strategic work rather than administrative tasks.”

Want to learn more ways to save? Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways Surgery Centers are Wasting Money in Human Resources.”

About the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit 

It takes approximately one hour or two hours for back office staff to gather the information necessary for the 10-Point HR audit. Typical savings = six figures. Request your risk-free 10-Point HR Audit today. If MedHQ fails to identify $25,000 in savings, the audit is free.

To Save Money, Cut Back On Annual Health Plan Increases

Shrinking reimbursements and increasing competition for patient volume have taken a toll on ambulatory surgery center (ASC) revenue, and proactive centers are responding by investigating ways to save money. But most centers are missing one of the top three largest line items, along with building rent and medical supplies, that can keep costs in line: human resources (HR).

To remedy this, MedHQ has worked with over 70 healthcare facility partners to find additional savings that also deliver the benefits of improving employee satisfaction and reducing risk. Through the process, MedHQ gleaned key findings that guided the creation of the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit (10-Point HR Audit). The 10-Point HR Audit identifies inefficiencies that, when addressed, can result in six-figure savings for a healthcare facility.

“We were very surprised to find out how much money we could save. MedHQ identified nearly $100,000 that we could re-capture and put to work in other parts of our business,” said Scott Glaser, M.D., Pain Specialists of Greater Chicago.

In one simple example of our 10-Point HR Audit we assess the employee health plan. The employer share of the health plan typically costs $80,000 – $200,000 per year. On top of that, employees contribute another $25,000 – $50,000 annually.

Surgery centers can save money on health plans in two ways:

  1. The first opportunity is to limit annual increases to 2-4% a year rather than the 10-20% found at many surgery centers. This saves the employer up to $36,000 annually, and also provides significant savings for employees – up to $11,000 a year. Are you facing a big increase from your health insurance carrier? Have you explored all of the strategies available to mitigate these increase while keeping a plan that is attractive to employees?
  2. Another opportunity is properly adjudicating the monthly insurance bill. Instituting tracking to ensure employees who leave are removed from coverage at the appropriate time can result in savings totaling $8,000 – $20,000 a year.

Organizations who research, negotiate and purchase a plan on their own have recently been subject to significant increases due to Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act coverage mandates. Participation in a large group or alternative ERISA-based plans gives employers access to optimal plans, plus they have the ability to gain credit for promoting wellness and mitigating health risk.

Want to learn more ways to save? Click here to download the MedHQ white paper, “10 Ways Surgery Centers are Wasting Money in Human Resources.”

About the MedHQ 10-Point HR Audit
It takes approximately one or two hours for back office staff to gather the information necessary for the 10-Point HR audit. Typical savings = six figures. Request your risk-free 10-Point HR Audit today. If MedHQ fails to identify $25,000 in savings, the audit is free.

Employee Handbooks: 4 Best Practices for ASCs

Published on August 21, 2014

Is your employee handbook in desperate need of a makeover?

For many ambulatory surgery centers, it’s not uncommon for the same employee handbook to be distributed month after month, year after year. Often a laundry list of “must have statements,” these comprehensive employment documents are usually required by law and outline a company’s mission and goals, expectations, workplace rules and procedures, and formal employment policies.
But handbooks can quickly become outdated – and even a liability – if they’re not regularly updated. By following these best practices, your employee handbook will remain a relevant, valuable tool for you and your employees:

No. 1: Align with your current brand
A company’s business strategy almost always changes over time – and so should its handbook. Does your handbook properly articulate your company’s goals, mission and values? By communicating what the company is striving to achieve, and informing the employees of their vital role in the company’s success, the handbook can help guide employees on approaching their day-to-day work.
Communicating a company’s values and goals explains the important relationship between corporate and personal goals for employees. By showing that alignment, companies inevitably reduce turnover, increase productivity and lessen the risk of lawsuits.
In many cases, handbooks also should communicate to employees what behavior is expected in the workplace. Additionally, they should instruct employees on how to ethically approach common workplace situations and interactions in a way that’s consistent with your brand’s values. And when employees “walk the talk,” a company’s brand is strengthened and its corporate culture is further reinforced.

No. 2: Leverage new technology
Online portals, PDFs and other technology make it easier than ever to distribute labor and employment documents to employees. They also can help companies save on printing and distributing costs. Still, if a company forgoes distributing hard copies of handbooks to employees, employers should still request a signed statement from all employees acknowledging that they’ve received them.

No. 3: Review content annually
Employee handbooks should be reviewed at least once per year to account for changes in company policies or federal, state and local employment laws. For organizations without in-house expertise, it’s best to consult outside specialists, who can work closely with leadership to develop and execute long-term human resources strategies.

No. 4: Apply policies universally
Companies frequently get into trouble when policies and procedures are not enforced equally among all employees. Still, many companies are reluctant to “standardize procedures” because they fear regimented protocols are not flexible enough to address the myriad issues that arise day-to-day in a modern workplace.
It’s important to emphasize that standardizing procedures does not mean standardizing outcomes, which are impossible to predict. But by having a smart plan in place, companies can limit their risk and foster trust with employees, which leads to healthier, more productive working environments.

Please contact (708) 492-0519 for more information on employee handbooks.

 

Managing ASC Employer Health Benefits with Flexible Staff Scheduling

Tom Jacobs, CEO of MedHQ, sat down with Becker’s ASC Review for an extensive interview on how ASCs that rely on flexible staff scheduling can manage their employee benefits under health care reform.

In the article, Tom discusses how to determine your surgery center’s number of full time employees, how employees can be legally flexed, whether you should off benefits to non-full time employees, ASC wage inflation and how hiring hourly workers will be more complex under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Click here for the full article, “ASC Owners & Operators: 5 Things to Know About Managing Employer Health Benefits If You Rely On Flexible Staff Scheduling” from Becker’s ASC Review.

4 Questions for ASC Administrators in a Candidate’s Job Market

In today’s ambulatory surgery center job market, well-qualified nurses and other skilled healthcare workers have the upper hand. So how does your ASC remain competitive when applicants have more choices than ever before? Start by answering these four questions:

What makes my ASC unique?
Before posting a job listing, it’s important to understand what differentiates your facility. Are your compensation and benefits competitive? Also, how would you describe your facility’s appearance and culture? For job seekers, first impressions count for a lot, so it’s important to make sure your workplace is inviting – both inside and out. Additionally, administrators should be forthright about the ASC’s strategic plan. That way, the candidate can decide if his or her own goals align.

Does my ASC offer opportunities for personal growth?
Today, the most talented employees understand that professional development is an individual’s responsibility. In order to attract the best candidates, ASCs should leverage their diverse array of medical expertise to provide opportunities for professional growth. Still, professional development may mean different things to different people. For example, a recent graduate may be looking for a strong mentorship program, while an experienced candidate may place a premium on a steady caseload.

What’s my growth narrative?
Every business has a story. Unfortunately, some are inspiring to potential employees and some are not. An ASC’s leadership should make a deliberate effort to capture the facility’s narrative and tell it a way that makes a candidate say, “I really want to work here.” For example, a candidate should understand the ASC’s mission, the longevity of its staff and what its strategic plans are for the future. All employees, too, should understand these goals, so a consistent message can be delivered to candidates.

Does my ASC hire too quickly?
Decision makers at healthcare facilities spend dozens of hours researching the purchase of a $250,000 piece of equipment. So why not make the same deliberate approach when investing in a new hire? Too frequently, managers hire the first qualified person who walks through the door. Candidates and managers alike should have an opportunity to vet each other fully.
For more information on HR staffing solutions, please contact info@medhq.net.

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