The Affordable Care Act is forcing hospital workers to become more efficient than ever before. Doctors and nurses are being asked to see an increased number of patients throughout the day, which is making it extremely important for them to be as productive as possible at all times. Keeping this in mind, healthcare CIOs have to be willing to embrace new technologies for the well-being of their workforce.
The "2013 Workplace Study" (PDF below)performed by design and architectural firm Gensler revealed that if employees believe they have better control of their space, their bosses will see performance levels improve. Applying this to the world of healthcare, CIOs have to be ready to give their employees some choices when it comes to innovation. Times are changing and healthcare organizations need to see that adapting to new innovations is critical to worker happiness.
"The proliferation of new social and mobile technologies has revolutionized how we create, share and communicate," the study states.
Give employees the resources they need to succeed
Health IT is changing, blurring the lines of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliance more than ever before. Doctors and nurses are clamoring for the ability to use their own smartphones and tablets in hospitals and even complete some of their clerical tasks outside the walls of the workplace. Being able to carry out healthcare inventory management or access a patient's records directly through a smart device could be the way to see higher levels of performance from staff members.
The Gensler study encourages CIOs to test the waters of mobile adoption. Giving workers some say in how they will perform their work on a day-to-day basis not only shows that they are trusted, but that their opinion matters. When bosses provide their employees with the resources they need, it boosts morale and enables higher levels of productivity.
"Creating a balanced workplace presents opportunities to enable workplace choice through access to tools and technology that support anywhere working both in and out of the office," the study says. "Companies must then pair the right tools and spaces with organizational policies that empower workers to best match space, tools and tasks to achieve optimal productivity."
Change the workplace, yet still follow policies
Today, hospital CIOs are faced with a tough challenge. They have to be able to maximize their workforce, while also trying to implement new technologies at their facilities as they go. According to a blog post from Harvard Business Review, finding the right mix between technology adoption and innovative tools, while building a strong culture among staff members, can go a long way in getting the most out of employees.
This will allow hospitals to have a workforce that is satisfied, motivated and creative, which is exactly what is needed at healthcare organizations that will soon be faced with the challenge of caring for more patients. CIOs should always ask doctors and nurses what types of innovations they need to perform their jobs better. This collaborative atmosphere will lead to higher performance throughout the hospital.