Editor’s Note: This article is the first in a two-part series by Roberta Schultz, a follow-up to her April story, “Don’t Let Your Billing System Conversion Break Your Revenue Cycle.” The first installment can be found here on insidePatientFinance.com.

Once you’re certain you’ve begun to accommodate your staff’s needs as they pertain to the system conversion and hiring an outsource partner, you can turn your full attention to bringing your outsource partner on board.

Even if your outsourcer will work remotely, plan on inviting them to your facility to spend a few days onsite. This enables the outsource partner to get to know your internal staff and company culture.

The objectives of this site visit will be multifold, among them:

  • Introducing the outsourcer to the staff, and building a relationship between them. Nothing gets people working together more effectively than face-to-face contact, especially at the beginning. So much of communication is non-verbal, and by having staff and outsource partner meet will make future communication via telephone, e-mail, and IM much more effective and reduce possibilities of misunderstandings.
  • Building the relationship with the staff liaison. This initial meeting is critical for the success of your staff liaison. Be sure to free that individual’s time for the entire period the outsource partner will be in the office.
  • Establishing expectations. Meeting in person will provide the best opportunity for you to set expectations with the outsource partner for the relationship, such as the providing of timely progress updates and the types and formats of reports that you will expect.
  • Training. During the outsource partner’s visit, plan to hold whatever training they will require to be brought up to speed on your system and workflows. You’ll be surprised to learn that it should only take a couple of hours.

Concurrent with planning for the onsite visit, it is equally important to establish the logistics of how information, data, and reports will be exchanged between you and the outsource partner. If the outsource partner will be working remotely, it becomes critical to make certain your IT team has resources available to arrange for connectivity between you and them. Keep in mind that your IT department will be working on the conversion as well, so their available time may be limited.

The most important part of going into any relationship with an outsource partner can be summed up in three little words: communicate, communicate, communicate. By taking these initial steps, you will have established those lines of communication and given your conversion project the greatest chance of success.

About Roberta Schultz

Roberta Schultz is a director at ProSource Billing, Inc., a part of the Array Services Group family of companiesRoberta has over 23 years of healthcare Revenue Cycle and A/R management experience which includes managing various revenue cycle projects for multiple healthcare facilities including physician, hospital, and healthcare organizations.

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