Target-Setting Overview

Target-setting is a strategic process to establish performance goals for energy, water, and waste utilization and management. Each topic uses a different tool that starts with establishing a baseline: how much energy, water, or waste is currently being used or generated. Different algorithms then help identify and set short- and long-term goals.

Setting a baseline is an invaluable process for understanding your data and identifying low-hanging fruit. Figure 1 is an example of starting with your facility's current energy use and setting a long-term strategy to reduce it. After identifying Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced level paths to reducing energy use, choose the path and corresponding timeframe most appropriate for your organization. The objective is to set goals for at least the next 12 to 24 months and then to look to future projections to determine long-term target goals. But for both short- and long-term planning, developing a set of action plans, or strategies, is critical to meeting the target goals.

Figure 1: Sample Energy Targets

Action Plans - Strategies to meet the targets

The Roadmap strategies attempt to set reasonable and yet aggressive basic levels of performance. The goal is to support all hospitals in implementing the basic level of performance for saving energy (e.g., installing efficient lighting or insulating pipes), conserving water (e.g., checking for leaks and installing low-flow devices), and minimizing waste (e.g, using fewer materials, recycling more). Over time, the basic level of performance will improve, and more and more facilities will begin to realize the benefits of achieving more advanced levels of performance.

Figure 2: Path to Meeting Basic Performance Levels

Sustainability Performance

It's the Roadmap's objective for every hospital in the nation to achieve basic levels of performance.

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Target-Setting Processes for Strategic Planning

Setting target goals and action plans is a process. It takes the efforts of teams to understand the baseline and the vision and to determine the most effective set of performance improvement measures (PIMs) for achieving the target goals. It is an iterative process and requires measurement and validation and a frequent reassessment of goals.

The accompanying table explains the target-setting process using a 2030 long-term target, although the long term could extend as far as 2050 for major building or energy projects. The vertical axis is categorized by basic, intermediate, and advanced approaches, and the horizontal axis across the top by the timeline.

The time between 2020 and 2030 represents the work that we, collectively, may need to do to shift the marketplace to provide the technologies and tools we need to meet our long-term goals. During long-term planning, do not limit yourself to today's technology constraints. Think about what waste management, for example, might look like in the most futuristic ways, and start thinking out of the box. That is our opportunity.


The Target-Setting Process

Aspect 2010:
Design/Operate for Today's Maximum Achievable Potential
Research Required
Potential Sustainable Hospital
Research Required
Hospital of the Future
Baseline A highly recommended process of measuring an organization's current performance to gain data that will help the organization determine opportunities for improvement, set targets, and develop strategies to meet those targets.
Basic A set of numeric and operational targets for a facility just starting on the path

AHA goal: 100 percent of facilities
N/A Targets that resemble the 2010 Intermediate targets N/A Targets that resemble the 2020 Intermediate to Advanced targets
Intermediate A set of numeric and operational targets for a facility that has achieved the Basic targets and is striving toward a higher level of achievement A set of strategies that would be required in the marketplace for facilities to meet the 2020 target goals Targets that resemble the 2010 Advanced targets A set of visionary strategies that would be required in the marketplace for facilities to meet the 2030 target goals Targets that resemble the 2020 Advanced targets
Advanced A set of numeric and operational targets for a facility that is raising the bar, initiating new programs, and achieving best practice goals across a wide variety of programs Targets that have taken advantage of the market changes in the previous 10 years The hospital of the future . . .

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