Big decision - is this worth it? (old guard battle pt. 2)

In this thread, I talked about a problem that has arisen at work.

Today, I got an answer. According to the boss of the supervisor of the cashier’s department (they input the EOBs), if they input the EOB w/o page numbers, it takes about an hour. If they do put in the page numbers, it takes four hours.

So, she’s trying to tell me it takes three hours to input an additonal 4-5,000 extra characters?

Color me :dubious:.

Even if it took an additonal 3 seconds to input the extra characters (3-5 per claim) and there were 500 claims, that comes out to 25 minutes.

Here’s what the difference would be:
instead of putting “1234567” in the check number field, you’d have to put “1234567/p1” to include the page number. The EOB’s can run as many as 180 pages so even then it would be “1234567/p180”.

Hell, you could use C&P to insert “1234567/p” and then input the page number at the end.

I even suggested entering it as “1234567-1” and we would know that the “-1” means it’s on page 1.

Now the fun part:

The person who told me this is not only the boss of the supervisor of the cashier’s department (and I found out today, they’re close friends too), she’s also the office manager of my office. Yep, she’s my supervisor’s boss, too.

The department manager (that woman’s boss) said at a departmental meeting, “If you have a problem that you believe is important, don’t stop pursuing it until you get a satisfactory conclusion.”

I may now have to go to her to resolve this. I would be more than happy to sit in with the data entry person and see for myself that it does indeed take three hours to perform this task (which happens once, MAYBE twice, in a week).

This is the kind of thing that some would think is trivial. I don’t think it is. Even though the majority of my cow-orkers don’t give two shits about their job, I do. If it was just effecting me, I’d let it go, but it effects at least a dozen people.


Did you estimate how much time you’re wasting when the pages aren’t numbered?

Well, I know the pattern of how the EOB is laid out. So it can take me a minute or so, but the majority of cow-orkers will take 3-5 minutes each time they have to look at the EOB.

There’s a group in our office that’s does nothing but make sure contracted carriers pay by the contracts. They get reports showing differences in actual payments and contractural agreements. They may have to look at the same EOB 10 times or more (I’m not exactly sure). There’s three people on this team.

There’s two people who do refunds (to patients and carriers) and they may have to do the same.

I would gestimate that per EOB, there’s gonna be 10-20 hours of wasted time, but I would have to do more research. I may have to!

The addition of from 1 to 5 keystrokes quadruples the effort to enter the whole series of documents? And the boss believed that?
Well, there should be ample documentation that the entry department exhibited a 75% decrease in time spent the month that they dropped the page number.

Given the tangled nature of friendships in high places, you may need to decide whether this is worth dying for. However, I would pursue it just a bit more.

For example, where were the page numbers being entered, previously? I would oppose entering extraneous data in an existing (key or searchable) field, so your suffix system strikes me as dangerous. Is there a separate field to hold page numbers? Was the entry screen programmed so poorly as to require a screen jump every time the page number is entered? (This might make the exorbitant time claim possible.)

I would ask for a demonstration before all the relevant bosses, to avoid the he-said-she-said nonsense against which I warned in the earlier thread. If you can’t get them to do that, you may need to decide whether the enmity of clannish supervisors is worth the relief of the extra work. (It also gives them a chance to demonstrate the problem in a way that may make it more believable to you.)

Alternatively, document the extra work on your end, to the best of your ability, then hope that a future change in management is more receptive to re-opening the situation.

The page number was entered after a slash in the same field as the check number: 1234567/p39, for example. This does not effect the ability to search for the check number should that be necessary. They had been doing this for about two years and then, all of a sudden, they decide it takes too long. There’s only one other carrier that they were doing this for, but I haven’t checked to see if they’ve stopped. I’ll look today.

There is no separate place on the screen to put the check number by itself. The check number field appears to be able to hold as many as 20-30 characters.

I’ll continue to look at this.