5 Reasons to Meet with Us at WSWA 75

5 Reasons to Meet with Us at WSWA 75The Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America 75th Annual Convention & Exposition will be held April 30-May 3 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. It is the largest gathering of wine and spirits distributors in the U.S., and it is also attended by suppliers from around the world. Once again, Dimensional Insight will be there in the Pisa Suite, a lower-level hospitality suite.

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Are you planning to attend the show? Here are five reasons why you should pencil us in to your schedule. (more…)

Meet the Dimensional Insight Team: John Stoveken

John Stoveken and his dogThe unique backgrounds and versatile skillsets of Dimensional Insight’s staff help push us to deliver the most innovative and powerful services possible. I recently sat down with one of the members of our team, John Stoveken. Even if you don’t recognize the name, you likely know John’s work or his adorable mixed-breed rescue dog Hendrix. John has worked at Dimensional Insight for 16 years, but he was actually involved with the company years before he officially joined the team.

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I talked with John about his work and fascinating past to get some insight into the Dimensional Insight San Diego office, InterReport, and more. (more…)

Dimensional Insight Book Club: The Digital Doctor

the digital doctorThe past few years have been filled with technological innovation and development, and there’s been a lot of talk about the future impact of technology across various industries. In healthcare, discussion has focused on data and analytics, artificial intelligence, blockchain, machine learning, and the potential impact of technology on patient outcomes.

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As a result of these recent discussions, the Dimensional Insight Book Club decided to kick off with The Digital Doctor by Robert Watcher. For the past six weeks, we have been enjoying this first read, whether on a plane travelling to HIMSS or over a cup of tea during one of the many Nor’easters we had in Boston in March. Our first book club panel consists of George Dealy, vice president of healthcare applications; Nora Lissy, director of healthcare information; Julie Lamoureux, senior healthcare consultant; Marissa Leone, healthcare consultant; and Kathy Sucich, senior content and communications manager. Here are their thoughts on this book. (more…)

How to use HSRIC to Enrich Your Healthcare Data in Diver

Logo for Health Services Research Information Central (HSRIC)If you follow our blog, you know I typically write articles about dashboard design. However, now we have expanded this topic to “Getting More Out of Diver”, which will encompass not only dashboard design, but also help you better understand your data and how to accomplish your goals within Diver.

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This article is my first under this new topic. I believe it will help you get more out of Diver. In short, I’d like to introduce you to a resourceful web site that will help those in healthcare better understand their hospital’s performance by comparing it to a benchmark. (more…)

Takeaways from the 2018 Gartner Data & Analytics Summit

Takeaways from the 2018 Gartner Data & Analytics SummitEvery March, Gartner kicks off its yearly round of Data & Analytics Summits in Dallas, followed by another show two weeks later in London. These events bring a combined total of more than 5,000 data and analytics professionals together to learn about the latest trends and technologies in this space.

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Having attended the Dallas summit for the past two years, I decided to check out the London summit this year. Here are some of my top takeaways from the event. (more…)

How Hospitals Are Innovating and Adapting for the Future

How Hospitals Are Innovating and Adapting for the FutureIsn’t it curious when two intelligent people examine the same information and draw opposite conclusions? That is the dynamic I thought was at work recently, when The New York Times ran an opinion piece called “Are Hospitals Becoming Obsolete?” one day before The Wall Street Journal published an in-depth report titled “What the Hospitals of the Future Look Like.” Based on the headlines, I expected one article to focus on hospitals’ pending doom and another on their rebirth.

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But it turns out only the headline writers were betting on obsolescence versus evolution. The articles’ authors agree that hospitals are undergoing radical changes and they cover much common ground about current trends and where the sector is headed. What do they think hospitals of the future will look like? Here’s a rundown. (more…)

Customer Spotlight: Campari America

campari america officeWhen you’re one of the world’s largest beverage alcohol companies, you can sit back and take it easy while your product just flies off the shelves, right? Wrong.

Campari America, the U.S. division of Milan-based Campari Group, which is the sixth largest premium spirits company in the world, knows that success comes as a result of continually examining data such as user trends, sales, and account opportunities, and then making informed decisions on product and sales opportunities from that data.

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I recently had a chance to visit Campari America at its office in San Francisco to talk about how it is using analytics to both predict and react to trends, and as a result, drive sales. Here are some insights from my visit. (more…)

How Healthcare Organizations Are Using Analytics to Promote Patient Safety

patient safetyDid you know hospital medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States? According to the New England Journal of Medicine, this would equate to about 700 people per day. That’s why patient safety is paramount, and it’s getting an extra focus as part of Patient Safety Awareness Week.

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While there’s a lot that hospitals do to promote patient safety that has to do with training people and improving processes, there is also a lot they can do in terms of technology to help them out. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at three hospitals and how they are using analytics for patient safety initiatives. (more…)

A First Look at HIMSS18

HIMSS18 is off to a busy start, with more than 43,000 healthcare professionals from around the world in Las Vegas. Monday featured the CHIME CIO Forum and the opening keynote by Eric Schmidt, technical advisor and former executive chairman of Alphabet. On Tuesday, the show floor opens.

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Here are some initial first impressions of the themes and discussions happening at HIMSS18. (more…)

Meet the Dimensional Insight Team: Julie Lamoureux

Here at Dimensional Insight, one of our vertical focuses in the United States is in healthcare. There are a lot of interesting trends and changes going on in the industry, such as the move to value-based care, the continuing challenges of interoperability (or lack thereof), and the emergence of new technologies, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning.

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One of the stellar employees here who helps us wrap our heads around these emerging trends and how to apply them in our customer deployments is Julie Lamoureux, senior healthcare consultant. I recently chatted with Julie about her role here at Dimensional Insight and what her hopes are for the future of healthcare and technology. (more…)

Introducing the Dimensional Insight Book Club

dimensional insight book clubHave you ever wanted to read a book that would help you with some aspect of your work life but weren’t quite sure what book to pick? Or have you read a great book that you’ve wanted to discuss and share with others? Today we’re starting up the Dimensional Insight book club. In this series, we’ll be recommending and reading various books that relate to topics such as analytics, technology, and business, as well as include industry-specific books in verticals such as healthcare, wine and spirits, and manufacturing.

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Here’s how it will work: we’ll recommend a book here on the blog (please feel free to submit suggestions). About six weeks later, we’ll discuss it with a panel of folks who have read the book. (Again, please let us know if you’d like to be on our book panel!) Feel free to add your comments on the book on the blog, or just read the book and see what others thought about it. Today, we’ll preview our first book selection, and show you additional recommendations from people here at Dimensional Insight who will be on our initial panel in case you’re looking to read more. (more…)

What to Watch for at HIMSS18

himss 18 logoHIMSS18, the world’s largest healthcare IT conference, will be held March 5-9 at the Sands Expo in Las Vegas. Once again, Dimensional Insight will be exhibiting at the show.

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This year’s agenda includes more than 300 educational sessions and special programs for an expected crowd of 45,000. Are you busy planning your agenda for the show? Here are a few things to keep on your radar. (more…)

How Beverage Alcohol Companies Can Use Analytics for Long-Term Planning

analytics for long-term planning drawingHow can beverage alcohol companies strategize and plan for success in 2018? The answer lies in analytics, data, and technology.

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An investment in analytics enables beverage alcohol companies to better understand their direction as well as overall industry trends. Such information can aid in better data-driven decision-making, resulting in improved efficiency, increased productivity, and greater success and growth. (more…)

3 Examples of How Hospitals are Using Predictive Analytics

predictive analyticsPredictive analytics is increasingly key to powering hospital initiatives that maximize efficiency, realize cost savings, and help deliver superior care. Predictive analytics is not new to healthcare, but it is more powerful than ever, due to today’s abundance of data and tools to understand it.

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How – and why – are hospitals putting predictive analytics to work? The goal is often to improve operational efficiency or to proactively provide services that prevent greater problems and spending. Many hospitals have started with applications aimed at reducing readmissions and predicting which patients are at risk of developing sepsis. Other common use cases focus on optimizing staffing and resources. Here are three other examples of hospitals successfully putting predictive analytics into action. (more…)

How Will Blockchain Technology Impact Healthcare?

2017 was a year of technological innovation, especially with the increased impact of artificial intelligence and machine learning. Recent discussions have focused on future uses of artificial intelligence in various areas such as marketing, retail, and healthcare. 2017 also saw the rise in blockchain technology and Bitcoin.

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There are numerous questions surrounding the topic of blockchain technology. What exactly is it? How are Bitcoin and blockchain connected? Why does it matter? Here are some of my thoughts on blockchain technology and its future role in healthcare. (more…)

How One Health System Used Analytics to Save $200,000 on a Common Drug

Rolled hundred dollars bill containing white drugs or medicine pills toned in blue

The cost of drugs is skyrocketing, with a recent Blue Cross and Blue Shield survey finding that member drug costs rose 73% over the last seven years. News headlines capture the dramatic impact on consumers – the price of insulin tripled between 2002 and 2013, the price of an EpiPen rose 500% since 2007, and the cost of Daraprim, a drug used to treat parasitic infections, increased from $13.50 to $750 per tablet overnight.

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Drug costs also impact hospitals’ bottom lines. An American Hospital Association study indicated that inpatient drug costs increased 23.4% annually between 2013 and 2015, and 90% of surveyed hospitals said rising drug prices had a moderate or severe impact on their ability to contain costs. For many hospitals, it seems like a losing battle. How can you not give patients necessary medications? You have to. However, analytics can help healthcare organizations keep drug budgets in check. (more…)

3 Advantages to Using Simulation in Predictive Analytics

Predictive analytics is a topic generating great hype and great hope in healthcare and other industries. As this area of data science matures, it is important to remember that predictive analytics is not defined by one technology or technique, although it can be roughly divided into two approaches: pattern recognition and simulation.

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Pattern recognition is the most common approach, the foundation of much-hyped machine learning and artificial intelligence. Simulation is another, more human alternative to understanding business problems, predicting future trends, and recommending optimum decisions. In this blog, I explain the essentials of simulation and highlight three of its advantages. (more…)

Why the Time Is Right for Predictive Analytics in Healthcare

Predictive analytics is a technology whose time has come. In healthcare, hospitals are beginning to use advanced analytical techniques to improve patient outcomes and optimize operations with some impressive results.

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Predictive analytics is the process of learning from past data to make predictions about future outcomes. Several factors have set the stage for the emergence of healthcare predictive analytics in 2018 and beyond. In this blog, we will consider three reasons why the time is right. (more…)

Healthcare Consolidation: What to Watch For in 2018

Healthcare Consolidation: What to Watch For in 2018Healthcare consolidation is on a tear, with several massive deals at the end of 2017, including CVS-Aetna and UnitedHealth Group buying one of the largest U.S. physician groups. Hospitals are merging in ever-larger deals, creating multi-state powerhouses. The number of U.S. hospitals that are part of a system rose nearly 20% between 2006 and 2016, according to the American Hospital Association (AHA).

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Healthcare companies also are forging creative alliances, with some of the industry’s biggest investments now happening outside the traditional hospital setting. Here are three trends to watch in 2018 and what they might mean for healthcare analytics.


Top 5 Blog Posts of 2017

top 5 blog posts of 2017 It’s been a busy year here at Dimensional Insight, and it’s hard to believe that 2017 is quickly wrapping to a close. 2018 promises to be just as busy, and I’m looking forward to all that we have planned!

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Here on the blog, we spent 2017 writing about issues such as data governance, value-based care, and dashboard design. Which topics most interested our readers? Here’s a list of the Top 5 blog posts of 2017. (more…)

The Future of Data and Analytics in Healthcare

Physician working with data2017 was quite an eventful year in the healthcare industry. There was a lot of discussion about technological innovation, such as artificial intelligence and blockchain, and the impact this technology could have on healthcare. In addition, this year was marked by attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, as well as discussion around and implementation of new forms of payment in healthcare such as value-based care models.

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What will 2018 bring in healthcare? Will providers be able to take advantage of predictive analytics? How will data and analytics impact healthcare’s ability to measure population health? How will providers gain more trust in their data? Here are some of my thoughts on the future role of data and analytics in healthcare. (more…)

Four Lessons from Florence Nightingale, the Mother of HC Analytics

Florence Nightingale - mother of modern healthcare analyticsHealthcare analytics. Data visualization. Population health. Buzz continues to build around these terms as we look ahead to 2018. But looking back, we find a surprising figure at the root of all three: Florence Nightingale.

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Florence Nightingale, the mother of modern nursing, was also arguably the mother of healthcare analytics. She was a trailblazer in using statistics to identify preventable conditions that affect mortality and a master of data visualization. Her story has powerful lessons for today’s analysts. Here are four. (more…)

How Will Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Impact Healthcare?

2017 has been a year filled with technological innovation, especially with the emergence of blockchain technology and bitcoin. Additionally, there’s been a lot of talk about artificial intelligence and machine learning. Although these technologies are described as impactful as the Internet, there are fears about their full integration into society.

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For those in healthcare, it’s worth evaluating and strategizing the implementation of artificial intelligence and machine learning into facilities to drive patient outcomes, improve productivity and efficiency, and reduce costs. Here are some things to consider. (more…)

Holiday Wish List for the Beverage Alcohol Industry

wish list2017 was a busy and tumultuous year for the beverage alcohol industry, especially those who were affected by the wildfires in California. This year also brought many company mergers and consolidations, continuing an ongoing trend in the industry.

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What’s clear as we head into 2018 is that technology and analytics are becoming even more important than ever, and it’s important for the beverage alcohol industry to adopt tools that will lead to improved efficiency, increased productivity, and more revenue. With that in mind (and since the holidays are on our minds), I created a holiday wish list for better business intelligence and analytics in the beverage alcohol industry. (more…)

How to Harness the Power of Pictures in Analytics

As an analyst, you can perform the most sophisticated analysis and draw the most compelling conclusions, but without a way to share these with others, your hard work stays with you. So how to best communicate when it comes to quantitative data? In a nutshell: words and pictures.

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In this blog, we offer practical suggestions on how to tell compelling stories through data visualization. (more…)

Gartner Data & Analytics Summit in Frankfurt | Highlights

Highlights from the Gartner Data & Analytics Summit in FrankfurtDimensional Insight recently sponsored the Gartner Data & Analytics Summit in Frankfurt, Germany. The two-day event provided dozens of educational sessions from Gartner analysts and attracted 750 business intelligence and analytics leaders from around the world.

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What did these thought leaders say about BI today and where analytics is headed? Here are a few big takeaways. (more…)

How Analytics and Technology Can Reduce Physician Burnout

Did you know that doctors spend nearly six hours a day on EHR-related tasks – 4.5 hours in the office and about two additional hours outside the office? (Source: Healthcare DIVE) This growing burden along with increased workflow results in clinician burnout and, in some cases, ultimately physician suicides.

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This is one of the many unique challenges in healthcare today, as the current rate of physician burnout has been and continues to be an issue. According to the AMA, emergency medicine physicians have the highest rates of burnout at 60% in 2017, followed by OB/GYN and family medicine. And it is only getting worse, unless those in the healthcare industry intervene. I spoke with Nora Lissy, Dimensional Insight’s director of healthcare information, and Julie Lamoureux, senior healthcare consultant about this issue. They share their insights on the physician burnout challenge and how technology and analytics can work to reduce it. (more…)

How to Separate Noise from Meaning in Big Data

How to Separate Noise from Meaning in Big Data When we rely on data to make decisions, how do we tell what is a meaningful signal and what is merely noise? Data is neither, in and of itself, as Stephen Few reminds us in his latest book: “Signal: Understanding What Matters in a World of Noise.”

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Few has written a series of books about harnessing visualization to aid in analysis. In “Signal,” he takes a broader look at analysis, focusing on the idea of “sensemaking” – that is, deriving meaning from data that can be used to empower decision makers. This is especially relevant for data sets that are large and unfamiliar. Here’s how you can apply some of these techniques to help you understand a set of data and what it might be telling you.


Manage Programs to Help Capture More Revenue


What is one of the biggest challenges in the beverage alcohol industry? Program management – especially without the use of program tracking capabilities. Before technology, beverage alcohol organizations used spreadsheets as their tool-of-choice to manage programs. However, as programs increased in number and complexity, organizations spent more resources on program tracking and devoted less time to generating revenue. However, as technology has developed, program tracking can be done much easier and more efficiently than before.

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Now, it’s OND (October-November-December), a busy time of year for those in the beverage alcohol business. How can beverage alcohol organizations boost productivity, efficiency, and revenue? Here are 5 ways program management can help.