Jonena Relth, TBD Consulting
These days you can’t look at an industry magazine, cable business news channel, tweet or blog without bumping into an opinion about electronic medical records (EMR). Without question, a well-implemented health information technology system will help reduce human error, make it easier to access information, and increase efficiency. But your people are still your most valuable asset. The decision to automate processes is but one aspect of a well-planned talent management strategy.
Talent management is a never-ending process.
- Your people are your most valuable asset.
- Your people differentiate your organizational quality culture.
- Your people establish your competitive advantage.
As the healthcare industry continues to grow and seasoned talent concurrently reach retirement, most hospitals and healthcare providers recognize the need for analysis and direction from internal and outside consultants. It's these professionals who have the expertise to help you prepared for changes and that will enable your organization to achieve its strategic business objectives.
To succeed in this wildly-changing environment, you MUST VHTD:
- View your organization's employee performance improvement from a holistic approach. Everyone needs training and continued education - not just physicians, techs and nurses.
- Hire the right people who will "fit" and even improve your organization's culture.
- Trust the expertise of organizational development experts to help guide you through the before-neglected aspects of HR.
- Demand that everyone be treated with respect and demand that of everyone in our organizations. No one person or group can make our healthcare organizations successful -- it takes us all -- from physicians, techs, nurses, food service, maintenance, finance, etc. No more allowing "Nurses that eat their own" or docs getting away with rude, demoralizing behavior.
Without everyone working for a common goal: providing best-in-class, state-of-the-art patient care, our organizations will be only memories in 5-10 years. Yep, I said 5-10 years. It takes a lifetime to build a hospital system, but only a blink of an eye to tarnish its reputation and following. The good 'ol days of being the only hospital in town is long gone. If yours is the only hospital in town, same is true. There's usually a competitor's hospital or clinic in the next town or county that is happy to hire your employees and treat them with the respect they deserve. And of course, they have beds ready for your patients, too!
To keep good people who truly want to work for you requires developing and implementing a talent management strategy that fosters organization-wide accountability, consistency from leaders, and increased productivity. To accomplish this takes quality:
- Change management strategies: Proven processes will help you to prepare for, manage and reinforce change. Clinical and ancillary staff are prepared for changes in workflows and are fully readied to integrate the new technology in their every day work tasks.
- Training/coaching: Research shows training is most effective when it happens in short, “just-in-time” snippets when the employee needs to apply the information. Time away from clinical duties is significantly reduced through the improved use of blended learning, online reference and workflow task training.
- Performance management: The quality of patient care is enhanced by a learning reinforcement and metrics tool that identifies needs for coaching. Low performers are addressed before quality metrics are impacted and the most valuable employees are given the opportunity for continuously learning.
- Leadership coaching and development: Programs customized for your organization foster improved decision-making and identify potentials for promotion to senior management roles. A sound executive coaching model and use of tools such as the Myers Briggs and DiSC behavioral style assessment instruments help you build the emotional intelligence necessary for leaders to achieve the most out of themselves and others.
- New hire training: Learner-centered training that engages new employees and helps them align their talents with the organization’s vision and mission enables employees to do what they do best: provide quality patient care. It’s these programs that increase new employees' satisfaction and success and your organization’s productivity will increase as you build a healthier bottom line.
And REMEMBER: Whether you’re just starting the process of selecting an EMR/EHR system or you’re a year or two into the integration process, it’s never too early or too late to bring in the experts to help you harness your change initiatives and all the emotions and behaviors that surround them. With everyone "happily" working together to move your organization into the "EMR/EHR Age" means:
- Improved patient care
- Satisfied employees
- Supportive boards of directors AND
- Physicians clammering to bring their patients to your hospital!