Access Optimization Overview

What is Access Optimization?

  • Access Optimization is an add-on feature to Lightning Bolt that generates schedules based on projected patient demand.
  • The feature works by pairing a 'Work Template' with a 'Target Definition' and determining when the shifts can be worked via a recurrence pattern.


  • Access Optimization must be purchased in order to add it to your department.  Please contact your application consultant, your lead salesperson, or the support team at to learn more about the steps necessary to add Access Optimization to your system.

Setting Up Work Templates

A work template defines the start times for the assignments that will be included for a specified demand pattern.  To create a new work template, navigate to the 'Work Template' tab and click on 'Add New Template'. You will need to give the new template a name, and include all of the assignments that you wish to optimize with demand scheduling.

Once you have selected your assignments and named your template, you can create a new row in the table below. You will need to make a new row for each assignment start time that is unique.  For the 'Template Type' column, you will need to create a new type. In most cases, it is safe to use a name that reflects the start times of each assignment group.

For example, if you have a collection of assignments that run all day and start at 8:00 AM, you can name the template type something along the lines of 'Full Day Assignments'.

The final step in creating a row is to set the count value of each assignment. If each shift that is worked in the 'Full Day Assignments' template should be counted as one tally, you would set the count value to 1. If it counts for 12 hours, you could use 12 as the count value.

Once you add all of your rows and set your count values, your Work Template should look similar to this example:


Setting Up Target Definitions

Once your work template is set, you will need to create a 'Target Definition'.  The target definition consists of a definition name, and a group of assignments and personnel.  If you need to set up multiple demand targets, make sure to only include the assignments and personnel that apply to each target.

For instance, if you'd like to make a target definition for any Out of Office assignments, you could name the definition 'Out of Office Shifts', include all personnel, and only select the assignments that are considered Out of Office (ex. Vacation, CME, ATO, Off).  Example below:


Once you save the target definition, it will appear like this:


Editing Target Definition Demand Patterns

It is very important to remember to click 'Edit Demand Vale' after creating a definition.  The demand value is where we will set the recurrence pattern for this target definition.  Once you've clicked on the 'Edit Demand Value' button, you will be taken to a screen that shows an overview of the target definition and which template the definition exists in.

Below the overview tab, you will see another tab that is called Targets / Demands - TemplateName.  This is one of the most crucial components of the target definition.  Once in the Targets / Demands tab, you will be able to enter the recurrence pattern that determines the dates in which the target definition exists.  You will set the date range for the target, determine which days of the week the target exists on, and set the expected demand value for that date range.  When determining the demand value, you can initially submit only one value for the entire range, but you can edit the demand value for each day by clicking on the value as shown below:


As an alternative to setting all of the Expected Demand values manually, you can insert a recurrence pattern from excel.  We have provided you with a template for excel that you can download and use to import your demand values.  Once you have input your values for each date, click Save.

Setting the Template Schedule

Once the work template and the target definition is set up, we can move on to the setting the 'Template Schedule'.  Now that we have the recurrence pattern setup for our target, we will have to apply that target to specific personnel for each date in the target definition date range.  To do this, click on the '+' icon for any provider that the target definition applies to. The screen that pops up will look like this:


If this pattern needs to be used by the provider for the entire duration of the target definition, you will want to set the same date range and recurrence pattern for both the target definition and the template schedule.  You can use the 'Applies Only To:' dropdown menu to select as many providers as you'd like the same recurrence pattern to apply to.  Be sure to select the correct Work Template before clicking 'Add Pattern'. Once you set your pattern, you will be able be able to use your the targets in your schedule view.

Implementing Targets into Viewer

Once all the setup is complete, you will need to add the target your views through View Designer.  This can be accomplished by editing your filter. When in the window to edit your filter, scroll all the way down under the 'Tallies' tab, and click on the Demand tally that shares the same name as your target.  After saving your changes, you will be able to see the target supply and demand values from within your schedule.


What is a Demand Target?

A Demand Target is the value that must be reached on any given day.  This can be set up either by pasting in values from a table or by entering values via recurrence pattern.  Targets can apply only to specific providers, assignments, and items or all providers, assignments, and items.

What is a Target Item?

Target Items are used to count specific times as values.  They can refer to different types of work that a provider is doing.  For example one may be for currently existing patients, one for new patients, and one for administrative tasks.  Depending on what types of tasks are being done, we can count the individual types separately.

What is a Provider Template?

Provider Templates establishes what Target Items are counted at what time during the day and at what value.  They can be created either in the interface or by pasting in values from a spreadsheet.  The spreadsheet includes time, item, and count value.  When Targets are calculated, the count value will be counted towards the Item in question when the provider is working at the time listed.

What am I setting up on Provider Configuration?

Provider Configuration assigns a Template to each provider on any given day.  Templates can be added by recurrence pattern to providers.  If a provider has multiple Templates on any given day, the assignment will be counted towards the last Template added that includes that assignment.  If assignments included in a Template overlap exactly with a previously assigned Template, then the second Template added will take precedence.

How do I display Access Optimization information on the schedule?

If Access Optimization is enabled in your department, you can display this information in Viewer.  To view, click open the Views Panel and click Display Options.  Select Show Total Counts for Each Day.  Two drop downs will appear.  The second drop down includes Target information.  When selected and Refresh is clicked, the schedule will display the Target with current value on the schedule displayed as a fraction of the Target.

Why do I need to sync changes I've made to Access Optimization?

When changes to Access Optimization settings are made, these changes apply to past data and future data.  Changes to Template counting or Provider Configuration must be synced to schedule data to update the changes.  If a sync is needed, the sync button will appear with a number of changes that must be synced.  Clicking on the button will sync all the changes.

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