Budgetary challenges faced by Social Services organizations

By - February 4, 2016

Many Social Services organizations across the United States are struggling to stay afloat. Although most agencies receive a significant amount of charitable funding, the lion’s share of revenues continue to come from government. State government budgets in general are shrinking due to various factors, and Social Services agencies have been the first to feel the pinch. Social Services agencies are for the most part generally well run and are used to making due with what they have. However, the current landscape may require agencies to be even more mindful of their management as funding situations continue to worsen. RSM works with a variety of Social Services organizations, including residential behavioral health, elder care, foster care, adoption, and learning and developmental.

We have found the following considerations useful in further improving operational and financial management with our clients:

  • Review and balance your organizations mission and vision with best practices and your expected level of care quality. Determine what organizational structure allows you to fulfill your desired level of care quality at the most efficient staffing level.
  • Make sure your organizational structure is documented and you understand what every employee does. Make sure agency leadership understand employee roles and doesn’t’ jump to the conclusion that any one position is not necessary.
  • Identify key drivers of care quality. Ensure proper focus of resources to these areas.
  • Identify key drivers of financial results. Make your managers accountable for measuring and communicating these results on a monthly or weekly basis.
  • Ensure optimal utilization of facilities and/or real estate. Often time organizations, particularly those that have been in existence for a long period of time, have valuable assist that may be able to be better exploited.
  • If applicable, review your shared services structure. Move services to a shared services organization, if practical.
  • Ensure the organization and its management develop and adhere to SMART goals and measurements. Make sure results are reviewed by executive leadership and boards of directors.
  • Identify and exploit new revenue options, including expanding private payer services. Social services expertise is a valuable commodity that private payers can also support.Determine if you are providing services that can be billable under Medicaid
  • Explore strategic partnerships with other providers
  • .

Social Services organizations primary missions have always been centered on the Client. As financial realities continue to squeeze providers, more and more organizations will need to become more business-savvy in order to survive.

To learn more about how RSM can assist you with your other business needs, contact RSM’s management consulting professionals at 800.274.3978 or email us.

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