In partnership with CHIME, healthsystemCIO.com has developed a blogger series featuring insights from hospital and health system CIOs and other key IT leaders representing organizations from around the country. The blogs, which will be featured on our site on a biweekly basis, will focus on the major issues affecting CIOs, including the health IT workforce shortage, mobile device management, and federal regulations.
Technology has become a cornerstone to the success of hospitals, health systems, providers and payers across the nation. As the digitization of healthcare continues, we see the proliferation of EMRs which facilitate the interoperability of data. We see the promotion of information-based care management and the encouragement of healthy communities. We see an accountability framework emerging that is shifting risk from the insurers to the providers. These new Accountable Care Organizations (and their variants) are here to stay, and they are driving the need for big data and analytics which will be foundational to future care models.
In addition, we see a shift from quality and safety to outcomes and value. Some will say, “Our income will depend on our ability to drive outcomes.” Meaningful Use Stage I and II, ICD-10, ACO and Big Data have CIOs scratching our heads, trying to figure out how it can all be done, while at the same time keeping budgets in line, and salaries and implementation costs in check.
The IT workforce is a critical part of balancing all these priorities. CIOs will need a flexible, agile workforce to be successful in this new digital healthcare world. CIOs and their Human Resources departments will need to be creative and innovate, not just with the technology but with their staffing models as well. CIOs will need to think about outsourcing, co-sourcing, 1099 and other such arrangements to augment the traditional employed model. The goal of all this is to build an IT department that can flex and scale with the enterprise as it responds to a very rapidly changing marketplace.
So what is the roadmap to creating this “flexible, agile IT workforce” of the future? This is a significant body of work for your team. When building this roadmap, your partner will be the Chief People Officer/Human Resources Department. Creativity and thinking outside the box will be necessary skills as you start this process.
Having been through this once, it is worth the journey. People will surprise and delight you every day. My co-author was my coach and guide during the development and execution of the plan we have shared here. The results where amazing — over $1 million in labor savings, improved customer satisfaction and better employee satisfaction.
This article is co-authored by Martha Davis, Organizational Consultant, Davis Group, LLC