Business Intelligence (BI) tools can help resolve issues with the lack of analytics in the health care industry and its impact on the supply chain.

Data analytics is a critical focus within the health care industry- during a pandemic, that need has been amplified times a thousand- approximately accounting for about 30 percent of the global daily data production. Data analytics can help reduce waste, maximize critical resources, track populations of people who are at risk for certain diseases, and track overall performance from within the organization down to each patient receiving care. Tools like Microsoft Power BI and Power Apps have solutions to bridge the current gap with industries that would benefit so much, it would potentially save lives.

The amount of data that can be collected with an influential tool such as Power BI can be a little intimidating. Especially when there is so much data that can be captured, it’s important to identify the actionable data to improve operations – and that isn’t just exclusive to the health care industry. One of the primary issues when it comes to data collection and powerful data analytics tools, is that they collect so much data, no one knows what to do with it…then it just sits there. The value of utilizing these analytics is huge and during a shrinking economy with tighter budgets and smaller margins – it’s absolutely necessary to understand how these tools can benefit these industries.

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Prescriptive Analytics

The lack of data collection within industries such as health care has been an increasing problem and a pain point when it comes to unifying systems and processes especially during this pandemic. Professionals simply can’t act fast enough to address shortages, increase performance efficiencies and to keep the supply chain up and running. According to global consulting firm North Highland, 83 percent of health care executives made analytics solutions one of their top priorities in 2018, with the global health care analytics sector expected to reach $34.27 billion by 2022. Data analytics will empower those in the health care industry to not only act fast, but to make decisions based off of reliable data that has been collected.

Many of the issues that the health care industry is facing can be resolved with a powerhouse analytics tool like Microsoft’s Power BI and utilizing their health care reports. As one can only imagine, a system of health care facilities that need to coordinate and work together needs simplified, yet powerful analytics that will allow them to do the following:

  • Share analytics and platform
  • Unlimited data access regardless of location
  • Identify trends
  • Receive notifications when there are changes in values
  • Reduce expenses and increase efficiencies.

Power BI allows health care providers to visualize their data into dashboards making it easier for practitioners to identify anomalies or trends in patient data or overall operations. Most importantly, Power BI dashboards offer a single source of truth and data that decision-makers in the organization can easily reference and read. Power BI’s dashboards make it easy to read and dissect data without having to be a data scientist.

A good thing about Power BI is that a user can make it very simple, for example, realizing how many patients are coming in and out of a hospital or office each day or as complicated as following the entire hospital’s finances and budget. BI tools like this one are agile and flexible to allow for better decision-making.

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Nearshore IT Services

From ongoing staffing needs to a rich, 24/7 onsite/nearshore model, our Data Science premium support teams are tailored specifically to meet your needs. Hire an IT resource that’s relatively within the same time zone, cost-effective and easier to access than most offshore services.

Since we’re highly proficient Data Mining and Big Data specialists, our Nearshore team can extract the critical knowledge and insights you need from your structured and unstructured data.

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Identifying Performance analytics/Business Decisions

Yes, analyzing data allows stakeholders in an organization to gain performance insights, but BI tools allows for so much more. Power BI allows users to gain insights that can guide business decisions and help improve the future within an organization. With the amount of data that needs to be communicated from one facility to another and among multiple different groups that rarely interact directly, it’s critical that this information is easy for anyone to read and digest especially when it comes to sensitive patient data or overall trends to keep hospitals running efficiently. During a pandemic, understanding the amount of supplies the hospital has, the number of patients going in and out of the facility, etc. is critical data that should and can easily be realized with a BI tool.

A tool such as Microsoft Power Apps is a suite of applications, services and data platform that provides a solution for custom business apps. Power Apps has the ability to connect the necessary business data that needs to be shared among different departments or people either online or with an on-premise data source. With a large organization that might use a hybrid cloud model for data storage, this is a key feature. By building custom apps with Power Apps, it helps streamline and improve operations by allowing developers to integrate external data and apply business logic. Power Apps enables an organization to modernize and automate processes again without having to be a data scientist.

Power Apps comes with features that help businesses create apps that don’t require any coding that includes sample apps, an easy drag-and-drop interface, and a library of connectors to integrate data and systems to get the most value out of the app. Organizations within the health care industry can work with Power Apps to do the following:

  • Log necessary patient data and results
  • Building standard documentation based off of necessary criteria
  • A system to ensure the proper medical tools, devices, and supplies are stocked and available
  • Marketing automation tools in order to do the necessary follow up with patients and provide additional care.

With the amount of sensitive data that is being collected and transmitted with these tools, it’s a no-brainer to also consider the need for strict privacy regulations to help avoid any data breaches.

Avoiding Data Analytics Pitfalls

With all of the benefits that come along with collecting data throughout an organization, being aware of the pitfalls is another consideration. One of the biggest issues with BI integration is that stakeholders don’t consider the existing architecture. With Power BI’s flexibility and features, integration is pretty seamless and is a scalable solution, but identifying the existing systems and how data is currently stored is key to being able to take advantage of all of the features Power BI offers. Realizing the power behind these tools is exciting, but another common pitfall is being on a fast-track with implementing a BI solution and not setting up enough time for training and development. As the saying goes, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Just like implementing any other new process or technology to the workflow, allowing users enough time to train and acquire the necessary skill sets needed to use the BI software effectively is essential. Doing this will help ease any resistance and ensure that the overall goals with these tools are achieved. As goals change and the software develops throughout each stage of the implementation, ongoing training is absolutely necessary. This leads to the next most common pitfall, data report complacency. For example, with the health care industry that has certain trends that need to be tracked during certain times of the year (i.e. flu season), management may want to pivot the datasets to track how many patients are being diagnosed with the flu and the amount of vaccinations being given. As operations change, so should your data analysis.

There’s no question that data analysis can revitalize many industries. Tools like Power BI and Power Apps have the ability to give critical information to everyone in an organization whereas before, they might have been operating blind to inefficiencies. During a catastrophic event…like a pandemic…data analysis with the right tools shouldn’t be a luxury, but absolutely a necessity.

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