By Patrick Lynch, CBET, CCE, CHTM, CPHIMS, FACCE
What better way to manage your department is there than to have every departmental activity show up on a single piece of paper (or a single computer screen)?
As a means toward that end, I am going to share with you now a dashboard that you can use to obtain a snapshot of everything that your department is involved in—in a single screenshot!
This is called a Time Analysis report. A variation of it has been used by the largest ISOs in HTM. If you implement it into your CMMS, you can have tremendous power over your destiny—by having detailed information about how your department is operating.
The Time Analysis report takes every data input from your CMMS and sorts it into similar categories. It then calculates the percentage of time being spent on each type of activity, and the cost of that activity to your employer, both the absolute cost and the percentage of your total cost.
The way it works is by requiring a work order to be entered whenever any HTM personnel is engaged in any activity. This range of work is expanded from just PMs or corrective maintenance. We want all HTM staff to document operator errors, recalls, meetings, supervision of vendors, and anything else that they spend time on. Let me show you the categories, and maybe it will make better sense.
Defining the Categories
PM (Preventive Maintenance) – Obviously, all PM should be documented by a work order attributed to a specific asset-numbered item. This contributed greatly to the overall productivity of the department (and each individual).
Routine Maintenance – Each repair work order must be documented for equipment history purposes and is used by the Time Analysis Report.
Operator Error (or Use Error) – This is documented to identify trends in equipment misuse. Time Analysis also uses these work orders.
Emergency Repair – After hours calls must be documented to provide a correlation with overtime and for analysis of calls outside of normal hours.
Warranty – When HTM personnel perform work on a warranty item, it must be documented for history and to keep warranty failure information.
Network/Cyber work – These are very important and must be documented because they can eat up a great deal of time and cost.
Installation – When installing new or relocated equipment, this installation must be tracked separately because it is not a part of the normal repair cost of an item.
Projects – These often consume huge amounts of time and must be tracked because they are not usually factored into normal repair costs or departmental staffing costs.
Recalls – We spend many hours processing and remediating medical device recalls. This can tap into you reserves of manpower.
Updates/Upgrades – How many hours do you spend upgrading infusion pump software? Shouldn’t it be tracked separately?
Supervision of Vendors – Overseeing service contract providers is significant. It must be tracked as a unique line item.
Meetings – Whether within HTM or elsewhere in the hospital, meetings can erode a department’s productivity.
Training – If a BMET goes to a week or two of training, that time must be allocated, or else their productivity looks awful.
Supervision of others – How do your supervisors track their time being supervisors? If they cannot log supervision time, their productivity can be terrible.
Benefit Hours. Lastly, how do we track all of those vacations, PTO, holidays, and bereavement days that staff take? To provide a complete picture, they must be documented.
Time to Document
If we can get everybody in HTM to document how they are spending their time, using this system, then the computer can compile a single page report detailing how the entire department spends its time. These can be totaled by the number of work orders, the number of hours spent per category, and the total cost per activity.
I can tell you, when we used this type of report in the past, it was a lifesaver, especially whenever administration wanted to know what we were doing, how we spent our time, and how much cost we were spending on each activity.
If only we had a Time Analysis report today…
Patrick Lynch is a biomedical manager with 40 years’ experience. Questions and comments can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Do hallway encounters count as “meetings”? Sometimes they are important and useful, other times not so much.
2. Saying that meetings detract from productivity depends on your definition of productivity. Perhaps Mr. Lynch means “if not properly accounted for” as he adds for Training.
WE CAN DOCUMENT ALL WE WANT-BUT IF WE CANNOT PROVE WE ARE A BETTER FINANCIAL ALTERNATIVE TO THE FRONT OFFICE, WE WILL ONLY USE THOSE REPORTS TO STUFF OUR SHIPPING BOXES. However-we MUSR document to even have a leg to stand on!
What Patrick is saying…..document your activities. Be accountable and able to tell your story in a concise and accurate fashion. Add value to everything you do.