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Strategic Plan Updates

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Strategic Plan Updates

Strategic Plan Background

In the fourth quarter of 2019, we launched our new strategic plan, and we chose to focus on six strategic areas going forward:

These areas were chosen as they were significant in ensuring continued growth for the agency. We’re excited to be able to present our first round of annual updates now that it’s been a little over a year. And what a year it’s been!

Infrastructure & Compliance Updates

As would be expected, COVID-19 presented some considerable obstacles for our agency. It’s been an all-hands-on-deck approach responding to the pandemic. Despite everything that happened in 2020, however, we continued to make substantial progress on the goals we outlined.

Throughout 2020, we paid particular attention to metrics development within our electronic infrastructure. We’re in the process of evaluating our internal data and assessing baselines to ensure that the data we’re capturing is accurate and supports our work. Demographics are particularly important in this area, and we’re making progress on gauging racial equity specifically in our discharge processes. A major part of our infrastructure development is diversifying services, and we did just that. We continued our expansion with the opening of the Garden Lofts in the fall, and we’re exploring other potential service expansions, too.

Garden Lofts
Garden Lofts in Buffalo

Our next strategic area is Compliance Planning, which includes compliance with Medicaid, HIPAA, and HITECH regulations. In 2019, a vendor conducted an audit of our IT practices and controls, and they provided us with some recommendations. We’re bringing these to the Board in 2021. Unsurprisingly, an easy win for us was increasing our use of video conferencing technology! The world adapted to this new reality, and so did we. Actually, we had a small head start thanks to the Center for Court Innovation. In addition, our Medicaid compliance processes have really taken off since we implemented them between 2017 and 2018. We’re continuing to review our risks, and most of our compliance outcomes are at 90-100% compliance in identified areas.

Finance, Board, and Other Updates

Striving for financial stability was quite the challenge in the most economically disruptive year in generations. Thanks to the tenacity of our finance team, however, we’ve been able to continue our operations. In 2020, we integrated new financial reports throughout the agency that have led to some transformational changes in how we oversee our finances. We also improved our revenue cycles and collections thanks in part to the restructuring of our financial department, which has led to increased efficiencies and collaboration across the agency. As mentioned above, we’re working on exploring new options to diversify our revenue streams, too.

Our Board of course had a major hand in creating our strategic plan, and their goals continued throughout 2020, as well. The agency’s executive-level staff are now bringing regular reports and presentations on strategic plan accomplishments to the Board. We also streamlined the Board packets, we’re in the process of recruiting new board members, and succession planning is underway. The agency continued its marketing initiatives and is a local leader in statewide advocacy efforts.

When we originally created the plan, we wanted to ensure that it was something that we could update in real-time. Plenty is still in the early stages, especially due to disruptions from COVID. Our work on overhauling our incident management and property managements is still in progress with more updates to come soon.

Some of these updates will bring changes to the plan’s categories and will add some new goals related to programming and human resources. These items will go before our Board at the end of this month, and our Executive Team will begin integrating them into their work plans. We’ll also start holding integrated meetings with Board and Executive members on strategies. This will all likely lead to a revised plan in the summer of this year that will take us through the next few years. We’re excited that the way we’ve designed the plan allows for real-time updates that best meet the agency’s needs.

Throughout 2021, you can see live updates at our Strategic Plan page at

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