Two-thirds of care organizations tell us they have silos between departments that cause breakdowns in communication. This common issue can have serious consequences, as we learned recently in discussions with Janice Gerbrandt, regional director of Rehoboth Ministries, which supports individuals with developmental disabilities.
What are some of the risks your organization could face?
Moving data between systems, in and out of spreadsheets, and manipulating it to get the necessary reports all increase the risks of errors. Often tracking down those errors to reconcile reports takes hours as you have to dig through spreadsheets, go back to disparate systems, and try to figure out where a specific number came from.
“Before the integration we were in a world of hurt,” Janice says. “We constantly had our Finance manager trying to find the errors that payroll had submitted when they imported their journal into the system. Nothing was coded the same because the two systems didn’t speak to each other and usually had to be manually entered. It just took hours of time. It was uninspiring and difficult to work with.”
From not having the right person in the right place, to missing out on key data about hours being used and overtime, scheduling is a critical process. An antiquated system means you’re relying on spreadsheets or a standalone solution, neither of which will talk to your payroll system. That silo could mean you’re missing valuable information, as Rehoboth found when they moved to an integrated system.
“Our payroll manager was loading in the funded schedule for one of the group homes that had a certain number of hours. They were matching what actual shifts were being loaded into the schedule and discovered they were short 100 hours that weren’t being scheduled,” Janice says. “That’s a huge oversight and meant we weren’t using all the funding. We were able to make sure we were putting all the appropriate staff into the program to give the necessary care to the individuals in the group home.”
Who sees budget data and how often? According to a recent survey Sparkrock ran, the majority of organizations get monthly or quarterly budget information, which means making timely decisions is complicated as no one knows their current budget status. A system with real time access to budgets, including for managers and frontline staff, means better results long term as departments can maximize their budget without going over.
“We have real time budget information. All our managers, coordinators, team leaders and directors, as well as board of directors, have access to data sets that they’re responsible for within the budget which is real time data that is able to say if they’re over or under budget. Everyone is informed and staying in budget and we’re financially healthier as an organization,” Janice says.
Want to hear more from Janice? Watch the recording of our recent residential care webinar: 4 Reasons HR and Finance Need to Work Together in Your Care Facility.