Understand How Often to Analyze
Calendar Quarter—You’ll want to assess your financial analysis on a calendar quarter basis for two reasons: seasonality and trend time. Seasonality impacts the elective health industry tremendously. Procedures that are popular in February will be very different from those that are popular in August. Consumer behavior will be different in each season, so you must take that into account.
Similarly, trend time is also linked to the time of year. As a small business, you want to look at trends over a longer period of time to more accurately understand how your business is doing.
There will be ebbs and flows in your practice, especially depending on your location and the current season. So, it’s important to have a longer trend time to help keep these in perspective. Making a decision based on a shorter period of time such as days or weeks could negatively impact your practice in the long run.
Year Over Year—For the same reasons, you should evaluate your finances on a year-over-year basis. As your practice matures, you will have a larger pool of data from which to understand seasonality and trend time. This will allow you to make more informed decisions for how to continue moving your business forward.
Evaluate Your Key Performance Indicators
As always, it’s important to look at revenue, purchases, appointment leads, and more to gain a full financial picture. By reviewing your KPIs, you can see where any potential issues may be and make adjustments as needed, so that your practice can experience continuous growth.
Conclusion: Seasonality—not days, weeks or months—impacts trends and shows performance.