How to Create a Financial Data Dashboard

How to Create a Financial Data Dashboard

April 30, 2019

Looking for an easier way to review financial data each month?
Instead of poring over pages of reports with a highlighter, we suggest aesthetic practices create a Data Dashboard: a one-page, high-level summary of critical data points that enables physicians and managers to monitor metrics, spot trends, and speed decision-making.
Metrics are to business management what vital signs are to clinical management. If a practice’s metrics are within an expected range, you can consider those areas of your business healthy. If one or more metrics out of range, you can take a deeper look at the data to figure out what’s going on.

Keep the dashboard simple

Use an Excel spreadsheet or a table in Word.
Set it up using the sample below as a guide and customize it to your needs. For instance, if you have a second office, include it in the dashboard so you can compare metrics alongside the main office. Or, if you’re tracking medspa growth by monitoring appointment volumes, add a row for that metric.
Notice the comparison columns in our sample table. These are essential for reviewing metrics. If you only look at the current period or year to date, without comparing it to the same period last year, you have no point of reference as to how well you’re performing.

Use high level metrics

The intent of the dashboard is to drive quick review of metrics and indicators to spot anomalies that require a deeper look. Like reviewing labs or test results, the dashboard is a way to make sure things are on track and only spend time digging deeper if an issue is suspected. So, include only the basics, or metrics that are of particular interest to the surgeon.
Our sample includes the essentials:
Practice Revenue – with a breakdown of Insurance versus Aesthetic and the percent of overall revenue for each
– Operating Expenses
– Operating Overhead
– Days in Receivable
– Medspa Revenue – with break outs of key service lines
– Marketing and Advertising Ratio
– Number of MD Days Off
Your Data Dashboard will vary depending on practice structure.
When entering Practice Revenue from other reports on to the dashboard, don’t include the “pass through” revenue you collect for anesthesia and surgery center fees in this amount. Unless you employ an anesthesiologist or own the surgery center, these amounts are collections but not revenue. They are a net zero expense for purposes of patient convenience. So, always subtract them from practice revenue. If you don’t, you’ll be reviewing inflated revenue data and your overhead calculation will be off.
Practices that have a combination of aesthetic and reimbursed revenue should always monitor those revenue types separately, as well as calculate Days in Receivable – the average number of days it takes for an account to get paid.
Clients who bill insurance often include Credit Balances on their Dashboard, to ensure the amount is in line with the ongoing flow of refunds. Remember that physicians are required to return Medicare, commercial plan, and patient overpayments, regardless whether they are requested. Holding them puts the practice out of compliance.
You may wonder why we suggest tracking the surgeon’s number of days off each month. There is a revenue effect when the surgeon takes off for several, four-day weekends during the month. Tracking this metric will help you rationally handle panicky physician statements like: “Why was revenue down so much the last few months?” or “Why isn’t my schedule full?
Once you’ve set up the Data Dashboard, monthly data compilation becomes systematic. Each month, enter the financial metrics from practice management system reports and the profit and loss statement from your accountant. Print the document for discussion.

Sample Data Dashboard for Dr. Wonderful

Current Month

Year to Date

This Year
Last Year
This Year
Last Year
Total Practice Revenue
Aesthetic Revenue
As a % of Practice Revenue
Insurance Revenue
As a % of Practice Revenue
Total Operating Expenses (Less physician compensation)
Net Income (Revenue-Expenses)
Operating Overhead Percent (Total Expenses / Total Operating Revenue)
Days in Receivable (Average daily charges / 365)
Total Medspa Revenue
Injectable Revenue
Laser Revenue
Skin Care Product Revenue
Marketing and Advertising Ratio (Total Marketing & Advertising Costs / Net Collected Revenue)
Number of MD Days Off


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