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Career Story: Financial Analyst For A Chain Of Nursing Homes

Financial Analyst For A Chain Of Nursing Homes

Job Title: Financial Analyst

Type of Company: My employer owns and manages nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

Education: BS, Mathematics, University of New Hampshire •• MBA, New Hampshire College (now Southern New Hampshire University)

Previous Experience: I worked in customer service for a health insurance company before switching to staff accountant for nursing home company.

Job Tasks: I help prepare budgets each year for nursing homes and assisted living facilities. I review their operating statements and suggest ways they could tighten and improve their operations. I support our regional vice-presidents of operations by analyzing data and producing reports for them that help them operate the nursing homes more efficiently and profitably. We also run projections on projects we are contemplating. If a nursing home wants to build an addition with more beds, for example, we try to judge whether the return on investment is sufficient to justify the expense. I meet with staff of troubled nursing homes and try to help them analyze their financial reports and see where they are spending too much money.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: A lot of multi-tasking is required for this work. Different people need different things from me and often their timing overlaps and I have to decide what to do first. (Hint: it's usually what my boss wants!) It's a lot of work; I could work 80 hours a week, in fact, although I try to keep it down to 45-50.

The best part of the job is I feel like I make a difference in the lives of the people we care for by making the company run more efficiently. Then there is more time to focus on patient care.

Job Tips:
1. Pay close attention in those accounting and business classes!

2. Communication skills are important. I interact with nursing home administrators, directors of nursing, vice presidents and even the regional president. Professionalism at all times is essential.

3. It's good to build strong relationships at every job you have because in the future you might need help or advice from your past contacts.

Additional Thoughts: The healthcare business is a good business to work in. There will always be sick people.

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