Could Telecommuting Boost Productivity Of Your Medical Staff?

Could Telecommuting Boost Productivity Of Your Medical Staff?

Telecommuting is becoming a widely accepted practice throughout all industries. Surveys show that more than 13 million people here in the US currently telecommute for at least part of their workweek. And research suggests that as many as 45 percent of all positions are prime candidates for telecommuting.

This can benefit both the employee and the employer in many ways.

For the employee, it means they can wake five minutes to 9, grab a quick cup of coffee and be settled into a chair and busy at work with little interruption.

For the employer, they can have a much wider draw for potential employees, choosing specific people to meet specific needs based on their resume, not on their geographical location.

But while some industries – media, IT, finance, accounting – have embraced the telecommuting concept effectively, other industries lag behind.

Healthcare is one of them. Since a lot of the healthcare process involves patient interaction, the industry hasn’t been receptive to allowing people to work from multiple locations.

The key to its success is with the changing technology. Telemedicine is enabling doctors to treat patients from remote locations. Advanced billing and practice management technology is allowing offsite employees to secure administrative roles.

Like many other decisions made within a successful medical practice, working remotely has its pros and cons.

As a manager, providing the best work experience possible for your staff is always top of mind. Again and again, studies show that remote workers are 10 to 15 percent more satisfied with their jobs and are more loyal to their employers than their office worker counterparts. And by allowing some of your staff to telecommute, you can reduce office expenses including utilities, workspace, and even salaries.

Because people won’t have long commutes in and out of the office, they often have more time to do the things required at home, and are better able to split their work/personal time effectively. Which means in many cases they become more focused at work, and are often more productive in their accomplishments.

Of course telecommuting solely starts with having a flexible position. While it won’t work for the people that meet with people directly throughout the day, the most obvious place to start is with the admin department – medical billing, data entry, patient follow-up, and the like.

The key to allowing more flexibility throughout the office is starting with an advanced, secure web-based IT solution. Chances are your billing and patient management programs are mostly electronic, but how secure are they when accessed remotely? How effective is your security when a program is accessed through different devices – an employee’s smartphone or tablet – or accessed in a non-secure area, such as a coffee shop?

If your employees have been requesting working remotely, or if you’ve considered using it to reduce your expenses, the best place to start is by giving it a shot. Ease into it with a test period in order to understand your needs. We can help you by supplying a thorough list of procedures and resources that should be in place before your first employee starts up her computer in her home office.

Then keep a close eye on how well it works for the two of you. Clear and open communication is the key. The more you learn, the easier it will be. And you may quickly discover that it can open up a world of benefits you never considered before.

Do any of your employees telecommute? What’s been your biggest concern?

Improving The Service Quality Of Your Business

In some aspect, every business is a service business. Making sure a customer is handled effectively from beginning to end is the key to a happy customer. But many businesses struggle to keep this process in top shape. While even tiny improvements can have a big impact on both retention and increased satisfaction, it won’t happen if you don’t spend the time putting a plan in place.

Start With Motivating Your Employees

People don’t buy from your company; they buy because of a relationship they have with someone in your company. No matter how much they need what you offer, if a customer has a bad experience with an employee, they will find another company to support their needs.Improving The Service Quality Of Your Business

Good employees create good business. So spend the time necessary to make them the best they can be. Start with the onboarding process and bring them into your company with open arms. Employees shouldn’t be thought of as a “one job” employee. Instead, teach them every aspect of what your company does, and how they fill a little piece of the big picture. If an employee feels like they are an important part of the team, they are more likely to go out of their way to provide their best work performance level possible. It’s not just a job – they enjoy what they do.

Also make sure you have a plan in place for what quality service means, and have a way to teach that process to your employees. Don’t assume that employees retain the information from year to year. Update your training and provide new concepts to employees along the way. Remember, if you don’t actively define what quality service means within your company, chances are your employees are using their own version. And more than likely the two don’t align.

Talk To Your Customers

Customers will tell you what they think of your company, of your customer service process, and even offer suggestions for change. You just have to ask. Yet keep in mind that your customers are busy people, and won’t give you feedback unless the process is easy.

Talking one on one is the easiest way. Wherever you have one on one contact with a customer, ask for feedback. What can we do to be of better service to you? What can we provide that we don’t already offer? Simple questions can provide you with a world of information from very smart people that see your business through a different set of eyes.

Also remember that in this technology driven world, you can learn a lot by monitoring what people are talking about online. Do you have a Twitter account and use it well? Do you monitor review sites to learn of complaints? If you haven’t taken to the online world to connect with your customers, it’s time to learn easy ways to connect and stay in touch with the people that can have the biggest impact on your business.

Update Your Quality Service Tools

When was the last time you chose to work with a company and had complaints about the way the business functioned? We do it all the time. It’s easy to look into another business and see ways to fix a problem when you don’t live inside the business every day.

Turn those concepts back on your own business. Are you doing all you can to provide quality service every day?

  • Do you have user friendly websites that allow your customers easy access to the information they need most, both from the website and through secure logins
  • Do you have point of sale systems in place that make it easy for a customer to complete the sale both online and off
  • Do you have security features in place that protect customer information from potential hacks?

Think like your customer. Then service them in the same manner you prefer to be serviced by the companies you do business with. Quality service is an ongoing process. If you work at it a little each day, you’ll keep your customers and employees happy for the distance.

Microsoft Ends Support For Windows Server 2003 on July 14 2015 – Are You Prepared?

Microsoft Ends Support For Windows Server 2003 on July 14 2015 – Are You Prepared?

After July 14, 2015, Microsoft will no longer issue fixes or updates for anyone running a Windows Server 2003. And while this isn’t new news – they’ve been warning customers for months – if you are still running Windows 2003, it could have major impact on your business.

End of support means that while you can continue to use the product unsupported, you will no longer receive any kind of update, including security updates, for free from Microsoft. Only customers who pay for custom contracts and who adhere to a phase out schedule for the unsupported software will be eligible to continue to get updates designated as critical.Microsoft Ends Support For Windows Server 2003 on July 14 2015 – Are You Prepared?

When you use a product unsupported, you put your company data at risk. Because no work is being done to prevent security breaches, it makes it more vulnerable for hackers with malicious intent. And where hackers have opportunity, they will take it whenever they can.

Whether you’ve been contemplating alternatives for a while within your company, or you’re quickly trying to make decisions now that the deadline is finally here, one option you have is to move your business to the cloud.

Cloud computing simply means accessing your files and programs from a computer server that isn’t in your physical office. The server may be in a warehouse across the city, or in a building thousands of miles away.

More and more, we access almost everything we do via an Internet connection. You access your Gmail, your Facebook, even Dropbox and more by logging into the Internet and accessing your files through a server in another location. “The cloud” simply allows you to transfer all of your programs and data to locations safe and secure, without having to take on the responsibility in-house. It gives you access to data from anywhere in the world; you simply have to login. That makes it more efficient whether you’re sitting in your office accessing through a laptop, traveling across town with your smartphone, or hopping a plane to another country with your tablet device in tow.

Because we’re moving to a cloud-based society, you’ll find everything you do can be accessible via a cloud-based application:

  • Accounting
  • Billing
  • General productivity
  • Industry specific programs
  • Conference calls

Even disaster planning can occur via the cloud, letting you backup important documents on a frequency that’s right for you. Then no matter when you need it, or what location you need it from, you’ll have unaffected data ready and accessible when you need it most.

Of course one of the biggest concerns when moving from an internal server to a cloud-based system is the comfortability factor of entrusting files to the cloud. After all, security breaches are reported all the time. It’s important to find a cloud-based business you can trust, one that has the right security measures in place, transmits and stores data with proper encryption, and performs safety audits on a regular basis.

Are you still using a Windows Server 2003 in your office? Still have questions about transitioning from an in-house server to the cloud? Let’s talk today.

Securing IT In A Cloud Based World

Securing IT In A Cloud Based World

Remember the days of making a decision about what programs to purchase for the office? You carefully evaluated needs, looked through your software options, made a decision, then worked for days to get the program loaded and functioning on every computer in the office.

Those days are gone. The digital, social and mobile revolutions have caused technology departments to shift their focus from maintaining systems, to enabling innovation. It’s no longer a matter of choosing a program that every employee will use; it’s about delivering a system that allows speed and agility to dominate in a world where every employee will choose the best programs for them. It’s about using cloud based systems that build the infrastructure to keep company data safe while allowing employees to work as efficiently as possible.

While an IT professional’s job just a few short years ago centered around hardware and infrastructure issues, today’s IT professional is focused on systems, resource planning, customer relationships and content management. Instead of maintaining systems, they are transitioned into driving their organizations cloud strategy forward, including how data is collected, stored, managed, and more.

Yet as convenient as cloud computing is for employees, it can leave gaping holes in the security of a company’s data, especially in the case of loss, theft, or being hacked. Cloud systems can be more vulnerable unless you take the necessary precautions to secure it.

Make sure the cloud system you choose has strong security features. A cloud system should be designed to utilize antivirus protection, encryption controls and other features that provide protection for your company’s data. It must have controls that allow data to move seamlessly back and forth between systems and devices without putting information at risk.

Backup and backup support should be readily available. Cloud computing systems often come with backup systems in place; however, they may need to be manually set up. Also make sure your cloud computing system has backup support, not just backup capabilities, to ensure quick turnaround if and when you experience a problem.

Test your cloud system regularly. Every business faces a certain amount of risk with their data. Hackers breech system controls all the time, in some cases for fun, and in some cases for unscrupulous use of the data itself. While cloud systems providers offer their own level of security, ensuring your data is well protected is still a role you’ll take on. By testing the security regularly, you will find potential problems with a system long before they become actual problems.

No matter what cloud system you choose, never assume it provides 100 percent protection. To keep data safe, it’s more important than ever to test and review the system on a regular basis. By doing so, you can prevent your business from potential losses while still allowing your employees to do their jobs in the most efficient way possible.