Work-Related Project Analysis Part 1 The analysis of a project is the breakdown of how a system interacts and works within all related components. A project analysis is the first step to designing any new changes for an organization. Systems analysis is (1) the survey and planning of the system and project, (2) the study and analysis of the existing business and information system, and (3) the definition of business requirements and priorities for a new or improved system. A popular synonym is logical design. Newton, 2013) An organization performs an analysis of an existing system to decide if changes will benefit the daily operations. The analysis performed must be accurate and reliable. Information Gathering There are many methods used to perform an analysis. The gathering of information is critical to implementing the right changes an organization may need. If the wrong information is gathered, the organization may waste time and money implementing a new system that either does not work or is useless to the operations of the organization.
Organizations need to know the correct billing and coding functions are being used on a daily bases. They may choose several different ways to gather information to ensure the facility compensated is gaining the maximum benefits. Physicians frequently miss home health charges. The laws governing each state have requirements a physician must abide to bill time for plan over site. Physicians need ways to keep track of who is eligible for home health. The physician also needs to monitor how much time is involved during a 30-day period. Interviews
Interviews are one of the most common means to gather information. It is beneficial to the analysis to gather this information directly from those individuals who will be utilizing the new system. The interviews need proper planning and focus on each area of specialty. The best questions to ask are open-ended questions. These inquiries force the participant to give more information than just yes or no answers. When interviewing participants analyst should ask questions that enable a complete picture of what stakeholders need to create a system that is useful and cost effective. Questionnaires
Questionnaires are a great way to ask questions of stakeholders without a direct face-to-face encounter. Questionnaires create a more relaxed response from participants. This is a great method to use when you have a large organization and need to interview a large group of people. However, one drawback to this method is participants may write responses just to complete the form or not even give a response. Prototypes Prototyping is another method in the arsenal of gathering information. This method based on information gathered and the system created; based on criteria produces a preliminary version.
You show this to the client, who then gives you additional requirements. You change the application and cycle around with the client again. This repetitive process continues until the product meets the critical mass of business needs or for an agreed number of iterations (Mochal, 2008). Use Cases Use cases are stories from the actors that describe how the system currently works and “…describe how the solution works from a user perspective” (Mochal, 2008). This method is helpful to analysts by giving a more useful understanding of what the new system needs to do.
Using this method requires the analysts to refine the information into a format that shows specific details to outline the structure of requirements needed. Direct Observations Direct observations can be most helpful when the stakeholder does not know how to explain in detail what goes on during a typical daily routine. In some cases, it might be more beneficial to take a ‘hands on approach’ to gain a better understanding of what is required. This method shows how the current system is used and will hopefully light the way to implementing better use of resources.
Brainstorming Brainstorming can be most helpful when the organization does not really know what areas need improvement or need a more creative way to perform a desired outcome. Experts in the use of the current system will get together with a project manager and together think of creative solutions to issues the organization is currently experiencing. After all the ideas from the session are, collected management decides what ideas would best provide a solution(s) to issues. Based on these decisions a project manager then creates a proposal.
Design Methods Designing a new system takes time and an understanding of what goal the organization is trying to gain. Designing a new home health system to gather patient information, monitor certification and recertification periods, and keep track of plan over site is the goal. Every project manager has to explore all of the possibilities needs to secure the desired goal. Divergence is having an understanding of constraints an organization may face when trying to keep track of the patient load, certification periods, and plan over site.
A prototype was implementing to put together a working system to gain a better understanding and create a better functioning system. Building a new system to keep track of areas of interest also need to be sustainable. New systems must be realistic to use and maintain. The sustainability of a new system needs to user friendly. Designing a home health system for the organization will present a visual understanding of what each state will allow a physician to bill for. Analyze and Evaluate The home health system implemented in the organization keeps track of patients that are new to service as well as those who come off service.
A scheduled time allotment monitors home health certification 60-day period; plan over site 30-day cycle monitored and billed according to state regulations. Management is ultimately responsible for monitoring these reports. The initial analysis of the new home health system showed a recovery potential of lost money. According to state regulations, the 60-day and 30-day billing cycles utilized are affecting the organization’s bottom-line in a positive manner. The organization suffered a great loss of money before the new system implemented changes. Project managers use three types of monitoring.
According to Thomet and Vozza (2010) They happen at different levels of the logical framework and serve different functions: 1) implementation monitoring is operational: it monitors the activities and outputs; 2) impact monitoring concentrates on the immediate objectives; 3) reporting concerns the concrete (narrative and financial) reports that have to be prepared and submitted periodi¬cally to the main stakeholders, particularly donors. Project manager will ensure the organization’s personnel trained in using the new system are comfortable with the new system.
The new system produces a report reminding the billing and coding staff when certain patients are eligible for billing. Conclusion Organizations all over the world work hard to streamline the daily operations. These daily functions affect the bottom line. When an organization is evaluating the internal functions, an analysis helps determine areas that may need adjustments and in some cases a completely new system to meet the organizations goals. This is where an analyst is most useful. An organization performs an analysis of the existing system to determine if changes will benefit daily operations.
The analysis performed must be accurate and reliable. The analyst may utilize many different methodologies when gathering the necessary information in order to make the right recommendation. The analysis may contain personal face-to-face interviews, questionnaires, prototypes, use cases, direct observations, brainstorming, or any combination of methodologies. The actual design of an effective new system takes time and understanding. The analyst needs a clear understanding of the organization’s ultimate goal. The final system implementation requires management to sustain monitoring and maintenance.
Training the proper personnel is vital to the success of any new system. Management is responsible for monitoring system functions, the impact of the new system on daily activities and reporting any concerns to stakeholders. The new home health system implemented has allowed the organization to recover money that would otherwise be lost. The new system also allows managers to monitor and maintain accurate reliable billing and coding of certification and recertification of patients using home health services. Plan over site also billed with the same accuracy and reliability has recovered and maintained money for the organization.
Reference Mochal, T. (2008). 10 techniques for gathering requirements. TechRepublic. http://www. techrepublic. com/blog/10things Newton. (2013). Systems analysis. http://newton. uor. edu/courses/sysanades/pdf/ anaintro. pdf Thomet, N. , Vozza, A. (2010). Project Design Manual: A Step-by-Step Tool to Support The Development of Cooperatives and Other Forms of Self-Help Organization http://www. ilo. org/public/english/employment/ent/coop/africa/download/coopafricaprojectdesignmanual. pdf. ISBN 978-92-2-124168-3 (web pdf) p 76, 4. 1