5 Ways to Improve Your Revenue Cycle Management Strategy

Revenue cycle management (RCM) is a hot topic this year. Monitoring, analyzing and improving the efficiency of your organization’s revenue processes is top of mind for leaders across many healthcare organizations. And you’ are probably still reading because you know that improving your organization’s revenue processes is essential to its success. But are you doing everything you can to implement a robust RCM strategy? Your competitors will not sit back and watch you take the lead. If you do not take action now, your competitors will leapfrog you with efficiency and better margins. . Read on for five ways that a strong RCM strategy will help improve your organization and drive financial success.

 

Build Strong Relationships with Partners

Revenue cycle management starts with strong relationships with your partners. This is especially true for organizations that rely on managed services or outsourcing partners to complete some or all of their revenue cycle activities. A strong partnership with your managed services providers will increase the likelihood that they will help you achieve your revenue goals. 

 

Partners are crucial to your success, so you must work to build strong partnerships with them. How can you do that? First, decide how your organization will work with partners. Then, clearly communicate that decision to all partners with which your organization does business. Strong relationships with partners will help drive success in all other areas of revenue cycle management.

 

Improve Customer Experience

One of the best ways to improve your customer experience is through managed services. Providers of managed services can handle many customer-facing activities, such as claims processing, that your organization might struggle to handle on its own. Doing so will free up your staff to spend more time on strategic revenue-generating activities. Strong relationships with managed services providers are also essential for ensuring that clients receive a quality experience. If managed services providers are not communicating with your clients in a helpful, empathetic way, your organization’s reputation will suffer. You can avoid these problems by clearly communicating with managed services providers regarding your company’s communication strategies and expectations.

 

Improve Diagnostic Accuracy and Specificity

One of the fastest pathways to improving revenue is to repair broken methods of diagnosing chronic conditions in risk contracts. Diagnosing very specifically, HCC coding correctly and documenting very accurately can provide not only a direct boost to revenue, but improves outcomes in patient care. HCC coding is vital to successful risk contracts, so RCM requires your organization to improve the actual fund of knowledge within your individual team members. If your organization is educating clinicians in seminars or zoom calls, emails and PDFs, you are missing out on the opportunity to improve diagnostic specificity and accuracy. And while accurately diagnosing can improve patient care revenue, inaccurate HCC coding can have dire consequences on your org’s bottom line. 

 

You might be hesitant to overhaul your HCC coding education, because it feels like a lot of work. However, it is far less of an organizational lift to improve training than it is to audit and fix errors along the way. And while some may claim that the new app-based HCC coding education is far less expensive than traditional training strategies, the real impact to revenue is cash flow positive. And that cost must be benchmarked against the inevitability of audits and repayments. Choose a partner you can trust to improve your team’s HCC coding, and see a direct impact to revenue, and simplification of the entire RCM process.

 

Monitor and Measure Key Performance Indicators

Management guru Peter Drucker once said, “Only what gets measured gets managed.“ No matter which areas of your revenue cycle you decide to focus on, you must monitor and measure your progress. This is critical for assessing the impact of your efforts and identifying areas where you might need to make changes. You can use metrics to measure customer experience, revenue cycle time, productivity, expenses and more. Choose the metrics that will help guide your RCM strategy the most. For example, customer retention and customer satisfaction metrics will be helpful for an organization that offers customer-facing products or services. RCM metrics that track the efficiency of your revenue cycle are also helpful for organizations that sell products and services. For example, tracking net revenue per customer and average revenue per customer over time can help you determine how well your revenue cycle is performing.

 

Automate Proven Processes

One of the easiest ways to improve your revenue cycle management strategy is to automate proven processes. If your organization is managing customer information, claims, billing or some other process manually, you are missing out on the opportunity to improve the process and save time and money. You might be hesitant to automate certain processes because you aren’t sure how they will work or if they will produce accurate results. If so, start small. Choose one process that you are confident will work as intended. Then, put the process into action. If it works as expected, implement it in other areas of your organization. If it does not work as planned, do not be afraid to scrap it and try something else.

 

Conclusion

Revenue cycle management is an essential strategy for all organizations. You cannot sit back and hope your revenue processes will improve on its own. It is the nature of RCM to get worse the moment you look away. You must take action to ensure that your organization is managing its revenue cycle as efficiently as possible. To succeed, you must work to build strong relationships with partners, improve your customer experience, improve diagnostic specificity and accuracy, monitor and measure key performance indicators, and automate proven processes. If you do, your revenue cycle management strategy will be strong and successful.

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