Intelligence within business, especially the business of healthcare, seems somewhat self-explanatory. However, there is so much to Business Intelligence (BI) than sitting in a board meeting and all executives giving summaries of recent performance and problems and making grand decisions based on that information, The Business Dictionary defines BI as: computer techniques used to understanding relationships between different data for better decision making.
These computerized processes mean having inputted data that can then be pulled out in usable forms; whether in reports or as intelligible graphs and results. The software that handles raw data and is then able to develop meaning information, which is utilized for making those really big decisions. If you think this is a really simplified version of BI, you would be correct; however, we need to have a common launching point for our understanding to progress through more defined aspects and deeper meanings.
BI is a visual tool that can provide a look at the small and big pictures of areas like financial, operational, clinical experience and outcome. Because healthcare data is one of the most complex collections of intelligence in our modern world, any effective tool available to help understand dynamics can be seen as indispensable.
You need the right tool for the right job, so choosing at random BI software is only going to empty your pockets, frustrate your employees and possibly push you further away from achieving any your desired outcome. To reach predetermined goals, you need exacting tools that will do what you need them to do, not what someone else may perceive that you need. In order to know the difference between what you see as essential to fulfilling desired outcomes and what someone else might see can be quite vast. But, this means that you need to know the nuts and bolts of your business. No small task.
Once you have made this very important assessment, you are now on the road to implementing a wide range of precise instruments to analyze data that might have seemed either unimportant or inaccessible. One of the first benefits that can be seen is the same information or reports that are created in one office, are available at any other location that is part of your network. This way, everyone is on the same page. Miscommunications and misunderstandings are immediately decreased across the board.
Have you ever felt like you are only seeing a portion of the whole picture, so without pertinent pieces of input, decisions are haphazardly made? Yet, when full access to resources is present, processes and allocations can be better determined and placed. This enables better business choices that can affect the bottom line. Quality of care is also affected because distribution of medical professionals is more acutely controlled with people not being stretched too thin or an overabundance of staff standing around with little to do.
Business intelligence works to diagnose problems that may not be routinely noticeable and drive performance for professionals and patients alike. Improving the culture of quality medical practice also improves the overall satisfaction experienced in both of these groups. Enhanced quality of care for patients is also a byproduct of better performance and reduced errors in data. BI isn’t just the big picture tool, but by having up-to-the-minute information on each patient, accurate treatment will be imparted. The attitude changes from one of simply processing patients in and out, to one of providing the best care on the market.
Most of us process data best in visual models such as graphs or charts, which is what BI dashboard tools can offer. A dashboard view needs to be flexible so as to present the same information but in different formats or arrangements. Depending upon the desired insight to be gained, the parameters that are requested for review and understanding can be modified for each user. It is like being able to personalize your Smartphone with specific apps, features and even images. Your characteristics come out, but more importantly, you are accessing what you want and need in a fashion that is comfortable to you.
A dashboard serves to render useful information, in a useful manner, and in a means that is comfortable and informative to the user. Large, far-reaching decisions require massive amounts of data, while smaller; more personal decisions require a more exact amount of data. Both groups are satisfied and have the information they need to form their own conclusions.
BI in healthcare has been a long-time in coming, and shows true potential for helping health professionals and patients alike as we transition towards managing a population’s health in addition to individual health. With the ability to grow as the needs of an organization grow, or any other outside entity requires, medical business intelligence will prove its weight in gold, especially when utilized to its full potential as it is matched with the strategies and goals within your company.