Healthcare is a rapidly growing and evolving industry in which it’s vital that the most important aspect, helping patients with quality care, not get lost in the necessary aspects of financial accounting. As individual practices grow, so do their accounting needs. What once could be handled by spreadsheet accounting methods now requires a more up-to-date approach. Today’s cloud-based accounting systems can provide a new level of efficiency, security and data management while also providing for accurate reporting and necessary regulatory compliance.
Financial Management Trends in Healthcare
In the larger context of the healthcare industry as a whole, there is some insight to be gained into the issues facing individual healthcare practices. The Association of Accountants and Financial Professionals in Business (IMA) conducted a study to explore financial management trends in today’s healthcare industry. Their report revealed some valuable conclusions gleaned from finance and accounting management professionals in the industry. Major takeaways suggest a heightened focus on internal controls and business analytics, significant growth and potential for management accountants, and an evolution toward more strategic interactions for finance executives within their organizations. Look at these statistics:
Financial and accounting department heads are assuming a leading role in integrating operations and finance. Nearly 70% of CFOs reported having a broader role in strategic initiatives than in past years, and over 80% of them report greater interaction with their CEOs and finance boards than previously.
With healthcare in the United States amounting to over 2.1 trillion dollars annually, the potential for fraud and abuse is great. For example, Blue Cross/Blue Shield estimated that $50 billion (10%) of payments made from their organizations were for fraudulent payments. Finance executives must focus on internal controls and risk management practices.
Finance and accounting executives are taking the lead role in utilizing business analytics and data-mining practices to improve their performance monitoring and management processes
IMA’s study concludes that while the “complexity of operations, financial transactions, and reporting, and the challenges of improving operational efficiency appear daunting,” they “pose a significant opportunity for the management accounting profession” in the industry.
What does all this mean for those managing finances and accounting at the individual medical practice level?
A Technology Solution for Individual Medical Practices
Medical practices, as they grow, face a lot of the same problems and opportunities as does the industry as a whole. They also need increased efficiency, security and access to data.
That’s exactly why Intacct’s leading cloud financial management and accounting software is being welcomed by growing medical practices. According to Intacct, healthcare companies dealt with some common pains before transitioning to their Intacct cloud-based software:
64% reported limited access to business analytics necessary for decision-making.
55% reported Inefficiency due to a reliance on spreadsheets to support their financial processes and reporting.
36% had difficulty adapting their existing financial software to the requirements of their growing practices.
36% were hindered by excessive manual data entry and re-entry.
27% felt they had Inadequate control over their financial processes.
Here are some of the Intacct features that are proving useful to healthcare organizations, including medical practices with busy back offices:
Accounts Payable – Automate your payment and vendor management processes; save time and money while achieving the utmost control and visibility. Your data will be more accurate and easier to access for decision-making. Learn more in Supercharging Accounts Payable is as Easy as 1, 2, 3.
Multi-Entity Consolidations – Centralize and automate your payables. This is especially important as your practice expands, perhaps to new locations and serving an increased number of patients. Find out more about Managing Multiple Entities with Flexibility and Ease.
Cash Management – Remove the hassle of spreadsheets to manage your cash and working capital. You can import statements from your financial institutions and automatically reconcile your accounts, manage bank errors, monitor for fraud, and more.
Reporting and Dashboards – Track financial and operational data by business driver for a 360-degree view of your business. Customize by kind of report, visualization, and other dimensions. This allows you to make timely, strategic decisions in response to performance trends or new opportunities. Is Your Business Ready for More Powerful Reporting?
Moving to a powerful cloud-based software accounting solution like Intacct will allow your medical practice to boost productivity without hiring additional staff or increasing your budget. In the long run, it will actually save your practice money as you gain efficiency and accuracy and use your extra time and money to grow your business. With more effective workflows in your accounting department, your office team will be able to focus on supporting your practice’s commitment to providing quality care to patients as you grow your business.
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