“If you don’t have goals and objectives for your hospital supply chain/value analysis program, then you are going to need to establish these, as all great leaders have goals and objectives!”
In a perfect world, you would want your hospital supply chain and value analysis program to be hitting on all eight cylinders of your cost, quality, and outcomes engine. We strive to attain high levels of productivity and we hope the numbers will add up to high value for our organization, the clinicians, and the patients we serve. The one thing that I have learned from my many years in the healthcare supply chain is that you are always chasing a moving target with your goals and objectives. Last year’s goals were nice but now you have this year’s goals to work up and set moving forward.
The good news is that you don’t have to wait for any annual period to set a new goal for your supply/value program. Your leaders will always be setting goals for you that they would like to see your programs attain, but what are your specific goals and objectives moving forward?
Below are three best practices on how you can set your goals for your supply/value program:
3 Best Practices to Help You Set Goals for Your Hospital Supply Chain/Value Analysis Program
1. Steal from the Best with Pride – As a highly skilled VA Practitioner once wrote, “If you have seen one value analysis program, you have seen one value analysis program. They are all different.” Most VA professionals have worked with maybe one or two value analysis programs in their career and thus have a great understanding of how their organization and perhaps their previous organization had run their VA program. Me and my team are very lucky in that we have experienced many different types of approaches to value analysis that are not always the way we would design them, but they work well, and the programs thrive at their respective health systems.
I would suggest that you start to build a rapport with other VA professionals at different systems and take the time to understand their programs and uniqueness and learn what you could bring to your own program. To be the best you must learn from the best and most of the best enjoy talking about their program’s successes. Why not make them yours, too?
2. Back Into the Savings Goals That Inevitably are Set Every Year – There are always going to be areas that your leaders assign to you like reducing costs by X or Y percent, but in most cases these goals are more of a general budget-driven goal to meet and thus it is challenging to try to back into a large percentage or total number. Why? Because we don’t deal with an overall budget number like say a department – we are dealing with 2,500 categories of purchase and over 10K to 25K in SKUs which is very challenging. The best practice we would suggest is to map out where you are going to get these savings numbers right up front, and back into them if you would. You can then drop these in throughout the year to make sure that you will be making the goals. Plus, if you have a shortfall and perhaps need to jump into something different like Retrospective Value Analysis Studies or Clinical Supply Utilization, you will have time to get these rolling before the year runs out, and most importantly, get the big savings.
3. Don’t Forget About You and Your Team – Year after year, supply/value analysis leaders set off on their goals and objectives, checking the boxes to make things happen. This is great, but one of the biggest mistakes I always see is that there are no goals set to educate and further the knowledge of your supply chain, value analysis staff, and value analysis team members. Think about the volume of dollars that goes through each of these areas and then think that you have no programs set to help bring along these valued staff members to another more advanced level. Great supply chain organizations bring everyone up a notch or two with great education and knowledge.
Goals and objectives are great tools to use to achieve in any given year, but you must be clear and reasonable about what you can and cannot achieve. There is no sense setting a goal to save $8 million in a year when the most your program has ever saved in one year was $2 million. You must be realistic. And if it was your boss that set out the grandiose savings objective then you must point out to them these facts. The good news is that there are many realistic ways to improve your supply/value programs that don’t cost a dime.
Remember, if you don’t have goals and objectives for your hospital supply chain/value analysis program, then you are going to need to establish these, as all great leaders have goals and objectives!
Below are some similar articles that you may find interesting.