Skip to main content
By Athena Mandros
Scott Workman, MCPD, Chief Information Officer, The Arc of Mid-Hudson and Dutchess
Scott Workman, MCPD, Chief Information Officer, The Arc of Mid-Hudson and Dutchess

For many organization executives using data as a management tool is limited to automating compliance and financial reporting, and maybe some systems integration to improve efficiencies. While these efforts are useful and may save staff time, there is so much more to using data to manage organizational performance, including tracking metrics to ensure success with value-based contracts, identifying wasteful spending patterns, and pivoting quickly when performance issues arise — and they will.

Building dashboards that support decisionmaking was the topic of the session, Data Makes The Difference: Using Data To Manage Care Coordination & Value-Based Arrangements at The 2019 OPEN MINDS Technology & Informatics Institute. The session featured Scott Workman, MCPD, Chief Information Officer, The Arc of Mid-Hudson and Dutchess and Jason Raines, D.B.A, MPA, SSBB, Chief Operating Officer, Haven Behavioral Hospital of Philadelphia. Mr. Workman and Mr. Raines offered four relatively simple guidelines for building a management dashboard that is useful for management and decisionmaking:

  • Assess what data you do and don’t have
  • Phone a friend
  • Build a team of professionals
  • Codify a process for developing new dashboard projects

Jason Raines, D.B.A, MPA, SSBB, Chief Operating Officer, Haven Behavioral Hospital of Philadelphia
Jason Raines, D.B.A, MPA, SSBB, Chief Operating Officer, Haven Behavioral Hospital of Philadelphia

Both the Arc of Mid-Hudson and Dutchess and Haven Behavioral Hospital developed an extensive series of dashboards. The dashboards start with the big picture for executives and then drill down into more detail for staff members. Mr. Raines explained that a good dashboard has lots of filters because everyone will use the data a bit differently. For example, executives want to see how a program is performing overall while the relevant staff want to deep dive into the data to develop a solution to the problem. They expanded on their advice for moving to data-driven decisionmaking:

Assess what you do and don’t have – The first step in developing an effective data dashboard is identifying both the data and the competencies that your organization may or may not have. Mr. Workman explained that you should know — and if you don’t know, find out — whether you already have an analytic or dashboard system, a data analyst (or staff with experience in SQL, python, or other data programming), a data committee, sources of data, and IT systems capable of supporting analytics tools and systems.

Phone a friend – Mr. Workman recommended that organizations not using dashboards ask industry colleagues to introduce you to organization that has a strong dashboard system — then go learn from that team. The Arc of Mid-Hudson and Dutchess sent three executives and two data analysts to visit with an organization in North Carolina. Mr. Workman’s team spent two days with the organization to learn processes, systems, and the good and the bad of the system. The Arc of Mid-Hudson and Dutchess used that experience to build the systems needed to create a data dashboard.

Build a team of professionals – The presenters also cautioned attendees to hire talent experienced with data mining, analysis and reporting. Organizations also need to develop a data task force or committee that is responsible for developing data-driven processes and prioritizing projects.

Codify a process for developing dashboards– Finally its important to have a process for developing dashboards. Projects where data is readily available and there is immediate value should be implemented first. Then organizations can move on to the more difficult and expansive projects. Once the easy, high-value dashboard projects are out of the way, the committee should determine priority order for more complex dashboards based on need, importance, and value.

Finally, while having a lot of dashboards is nice, it can be important to call out the important information to staff. Mr. Raines explained that Haven creates print-outs to help staff visualize the four or five most important metrics that the organization is interested in and post them in break rooms, bathrooms, and other staff areas. It drums up interest in the measures and causes individuals to request feedback.

For more on building an effective dashboard check out these resources in the OPEN MINDS Industry Library:

  1. 3 Keys For Success With Integrated Service Delivery
  2. Three Lessons Learned On The Path To A Sustainable VBR Strategy
  3. What Gets Measured Is What Gets Done: Keys To Selecting Measures For Performance Management
  4. Best Practice Performance Management—The Key To Sustainability & Success
  5. Five Rules For Building An Effective KPI System
  6. Using Data To Follow The Money & Stay True To The Mission
  7. Your Organization Is Ready, Are You?
  8. The Five Key Competencies Of Technology & Reporting Infrastructure
  9. Best Practice Performance Management—The Key To Sustainability & Success
  10. Using Tech Tools To Build A High-Performing Organization

For even more, join us at The 2020 OPEN MINDS Performance Management Institute in Clearwater, Florida for the session, Key Performance Indicators For Value-Based Care: How To Use Performance Metrics To Build A Value Proposition For Health Plans featuring OPEN MINDS Senior Associate Deb Adler; Blake A. Martin, MHA, Executive Vice President & Chief Development Officer, Monarch; and Ashley Sandoval, Associate Chief Executive Officer, Emergence Health Network.

Login to access The OPEN MINDS Circle Library. Not a member? Create your free account now!

Close

Support Request

Need help now?

Call our toll-free phone number 877-350-6463