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The pitfall of financial focus in healthcare
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The pitfall of financial focus in healthcare

Choose the right KPIs

Quality of care should be the top priority in long-term care. After all, you are dealing with vulnerable individuals with disabilities.

Ensuring and safeguarding that quality requires a lot of attention. The composition of the living groups plays a crucial role: who is placed where? Matching the supply and demand is not always easy. A living group should meet the client’s preferences. For example, is this group located close to a day care facility? Additionally, a living group should have the right staff with expertise that matches the level of care required. And last but not least, clients in the group should be able to get along with each other.

Healthcare managers are well aware of the importance of finding the right match. Because the balance can be easily disrupted, leading to issues and jeopardizing the quality.

Financial pressure

Despite the awareness that quality should be a priority, the focus can sometimes shift to finances. Healthcare teams are facing increasing financial pressure. To maintain financial stability, high occupancy rates are crucial. When residential groups have vacant spots for an extended period, the pressure to address the occupancy rate can become too high.

As a result, residents may end up in groups that cannot provide what they need. This can have negative consequences for both clients and staff, such as reduced attention and time for the client, increased risk of errors, rising work pressure, an increase in client incidents, a poor atmosphere in the residential group, and tensions within the healthcare team’s collaboration.

The right buttons

In healthcare, it is important to know where you stand and involve employees in the process. You need to be familiar with the right buttons to push. Indicators such as occupancy rate, absenteeism, +/- hours, employee satisfaction, and client satisfaction can be useful in this regard. However, beware of a one-sided focus on a financial KPI, such as occupancy rate. This can have far-reaching and unpleasant consequences for the healthcare quality or work atmosphere.

But how can it be done?

  • Manage a balanced set of KPIs that equally prioritize:
    • Providing excellent care for clients;
    • Creating a professional and pleasant work environment for employees;
    • and maintaining a financially healthy management
  • Avoid one-sided management by making all organizational components jointly responsible for the complete set of KPIs.

Winning with the right KPIs

Organizations can perform even better, and key performance indicators (KPIs) can help with that. Unfortunately, these KPIs often fail to deliver what they promise. Improperly applied KPIs frequently lead to silo thinking, sometimes resulting in significant consequences for both the customer and the organization itself. In the book ‘Winning with the right KPIs‘ written by my colleague Peter Geelen and Luc van Sas, we advocate against silo thinking within organizations. We demonstrate how you can use KPIs in a way that promotes effective collaboration among employees and departments. Your organization will truly improve its performance, and the customer will no longer suffer, noticing the difference.

Received a book?

Through this blog, we aim to share different examples from real-life situations so that you can learn from them. If you have an example of your own, please share it with us at If you share a good example, you will receive a copy of our book. Perhaps your example will be featured in one of our upcoming blogs.

Back to the overview

Winning with the right KPIs

From strategy to execution: how key performance indicators can help your organization.

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