Now that we are a little more than a year out from the COVID-19 pandemic, it may be worth taking a moment to evaluate how your organization handled this once-in-a-lifetime disruption: What lessons has your organization learned? What new practices are worth carrying into the future? Where do you need to catch up?

In some ways, 2020’s pandemic served to accelerate several procedural trends (like telemedicine and remote

IT management) that had been slowly emerging over the past 4-5 years. For revenue cycle managers, this meant continuing to process claims correctly, even in the midst of billing and reimbursement policies that seemed to be getting revised on a near-daily basis.

Beyond remote IT work, the pandemic has had an impact on the way healthcare itself is administered. The Department of Health and Human Services reported that 43.5 percent of Medicare primary care visits in April of 2020 were provided via telehealth, compared with less than one percent in February before the pandemic.

In this new landscape, it’s a good time to ask yourself a few key questions about your processes.


Whether your employees are completely remote, back in the office, or some combination of the two, chances are your processes were affected by the shift to remote work in some way.

Take some time to evaluate how your team handled working remotely by asking the following questions:

  • Did you experience measurable changes in productivity, from individual employees and/or from one or many of your departments?
  • Were employees able to easily access the tools they needed to do their jobs successfully?
  • Was the organization’s leadership responsive to the needs of remote teams?
  • Which areas of your operations were impacted the most?


Managing operations remotely is one thing, but you also have to monitor progress and make sure that your IT and revenue cycle teams are remaining engaged. There are ways to appropriately measure productivity without resorting to all-out surveillance.

Here are a few ideas to support remote work success:

  • Create an official remote-work policy: A transparent policy that sets clear expectations for both managers and employees is essential for keeping all parties accountable. Determining things like when employees are expected to be logged on, which equipment they’re using, and an acceptable response time for emails or other forms of communication, will help eliminate grey areas.
  • Estimate project completion times: Setting a “time budget” can help keep employees focused and allow you to flag any projects that may need refinement. After completion, evaluate how far off the time was from the intended budget and work with the employee to see how the process can be improved.
  • Identify key performance indicators (KPIs) for each role on your team: Whether it’s reworking claims or lowering your days in A/R, it’s helpful to use measurable metrics to drive telework success.
  • Set up one-on-ones and/or meetings: The shift from an environment where employees may be used to touching base multiple times a day, in-person, can be difficult, so it’s worth putting some weekly (virtual) face time through Zoom or Microsoft Teams on the calendar. The addition of video can be a useful element in assessing non-verbal cues to a team member’s general status.
  • Utilize task or project management software: Cloud-based project management systems have been a huge help to remote teams both before and after COVID-19. These programs can help increase visibility of operations across teams and departments.
  • Provide feedback often: In a remote situation, it’s especially important to provide feedback on projects as they are happening, rather than saving it all for a formal yearly review.
  • Review implemented productivity and performance metrics often: To keep your teams focused, they must know what is expected of them and how they are performing. A little competition never hurts to keep moral and productivity higher.


Although most survey data from big consulting firms concerning remote work is positive, at-home workers listed several challenges, including “home-based distractions,” “inability to collaborate with colleagues/clients,” and “loneliness” as significant challenges of remote work in 2020.

To evaluate performance and bolster your remote work policy, try to solicit feedback from your employees about their experience in the last year and see whether you can adapt your practices to ease the impact of the most common challenges.

Get their thoughts on questions like:

  • What was your biggest productivity hurdle during the pandemic?
  • Are there ways communication can be improved?
  • Have you been able to collaborate with colleagues effectively?
  • Are you satisfied with the remote work policy?

Without the physical separation between home and office, many workers reported having trouble winding down. It’s always essential to keep your employees’ mental health in mind, especially during times of stress. Encourage them to take breaks and establish a healthy work-life balance.


Halfway through 2021, we’re already well into the “new normal,” but it’s never too early to be thinking about the “next normal.” While major disruptions like COVID-19 are unpredictable, having scalable, flexible workflows in place will help your organization bounce back quickly, and even use these events as opportunities for growth.

S&P Consultants brought several major projects to fruition in 2020 across a wide spectrum of focus from operations upgrades and implementations to clinical optimization/training and major revenue cycle management engagements.

In the process, we’ve developed a reputation for helping organizations accomplish what’s necessary under virtually any circumstances. Remote work in some form is here to stay, and our staff includes experienced consultants that can help you institute the practices that will keep your teams productive and accountable, even in a changing landscape.

Give us a call today at (781) 428-3497 or fill out our Contact form to see how we can help you.