Practice Management | 3 MIN READ

What is a Process Consultant & Why It Matters

Melissa Blackman

Say you’ve just unpacked a new home entertainment system and can’t wait to start enjoying high quality video on-demand. But how do you know the best places for the giant screen and all those speakers? Or how to connect to the Internet? Setting it up to work just right takes effort and know-how.

Often, healthcare organizations face the same dilemma when they first purchase Centricity Business.

That’s where I come in. Process Consultants like me advise on best practices for building and using Centricity Business so it fits each client’s specific needs. We bring vast knowledge of workflow processes, policies, procedures and change management techniques within healthcare organizations. This includes the entire revenue cycle — from patient registration through to payment posting.

As a process consultant, I work with one client at a time and give each project my full focus from the very beginning to the very end. I am the consistent familiar face during the entire install.

How is the work done now?

Some of my heaviest lifting is at the start, documenting current processes (which are often a mystery even to insiders). My probing questions help uncover and outline everything the organization does in their current state. It’s the time to identify clutter and clunky workflows so processes are streamlined when the new system launches. This can be tricky. It’s human nature to cling to the old ways. With a solid understanding of what they are doing now, I help my client see why they need to get rid of outdated workflows and how they can make the most of their new technology.

I guide my client through design and build decisions to make sure their desired outcomes will be reflected in all Centricity Business modules. During this stage I’m busy revising existing policies and procedures, creating new ones, and diagramming workflows. I translate all processes into Centricity Business terms for the build team.

How can we make it better?

During the build-out of the new system I serve as a go-between for my client and the Virence install team. As thorough as we try to be in our discovery stage, things always come up during build that were not accounted for. These often come to light when my client first gets their hands on the new system. When people enter patient test data and start playing in the system, they may remember things that should have been included in the build. As a Process Consultant, I can mediate to make sure the proposed changes are indeed needed.

This is when the Change Management process comes in. I work with my client to determine the business need. The build team estimates the time and cost to fix the situation. If changes are deemed necessary, we get the appropriate sign-off from the steering committee. I update all the documentation to reflect any changes.

At the end of the project, I transition all the workflows, practices and procedures to my client in editable formats, so updates can be made going forward.

Getting everyone on board

As the go-live date gets closer, I help my client communicate to let EVERYONE know that change is coming. That can be challenging in a huge organization. Process consultants strategize how to start introducing the new system, whether it’s lunch-and-learns, email or other methods. This is crucial to successful adoption of their new system.

I invite you to think about your last install. Would your last have gone smoother with a process consultant and how so?