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Cross-Checking Forms: Saving Time & Making Money

The main reason for having a cross-checking form is to ensure that tasks are being completed in a timely fashion and move smoothly through the hierarchy of the practice/business. It should be a form that can be completed in the least amount of time yet still include all the information needed to inform others that tasks have been done.

The easiest form is created from the Position Manual based on the collaborative duties of the employee. Other repetitive non-collaborative duties can be included on the form as a personal tickler for both the employee and, when necessary, any temporary employees. It is essential that they understand that this form is not punitive in any way but is vital to the operation of the practice/business. One of the most important things an employer can do is show a new employee how their job fits into the hierarchy of the business. To assume that they know and/or care is to do a disservice to both of you.

Another item I have found useful over the past 30 years of business is what I refer to as my CYA (Cover Your Activities) book. Although many of my activities are repetitive throughout the fiscal year, I still enter them into the CYA book. On those days when quarterly or end of month reports are due, I include a list of the name of each report to be done to check off as completed at the end of the day. These are activities I have been doing the better part of my business life. Some days are so hectic and filled with so many interruptions, it is very easy to forget something we’ve been doing on a regular basis. Our minds play tricks on us and we can believe we have accomplished tasks still undone. It takes only a moment of time to create the lists, allows the employee an opportunity to create the pace for the day, and promotes confidence and peace of mind. So far as the crosschecking form is concerned, end-of-month or end-of-quarter reports can be indicated by a simple notation of EOQ or EOM checked off.

The ideal form is one that can be created using Microsoft Excel, or some other spreadsheet, already preprinted with the necessary tasks to be checked off. If the employee uses the form on the computer, it is very easy to e-mail it to their supervisor at the end of the day. Alternatively, forms for the week or month can be printed out and, as completed at the end of each day, either faxed to the supervisor or placed in a folder for pickup. Any activities that have not been completed on a specific day should be marked for follow-up with any actions taken by the employee written down. This gives both the supervisor and the employee a written record of unfinished activities that need to be done.

S.J.Thomas, MCRP
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