Now more than ever, innovative healthcare solutions are of utmost importance. With the ongoing spread of COVID-19 worldwide, healthcare professionals worldwide need to implement the most efficient methods of managing processes in healthcare facilities to better address the needs of patients. Be it in hospitals, clinics, pharmacies and laboratories, the demand for quicker responses and better productivity is of utmost importance. And in such situations where team members are required to be self-organized and be able to respond to changes quickly, agile project management is a much-needed solution. But how do you go about implementing agile project management in healthcare?
What is Agile?
As an iterative approach to project management, agile is designed to enhance the productivity of teams by delivering work in small repetitive increments called sprints. Agile has become a popular business process for companies from various industries such as product and software development, event planning, construction, marketing and advertising, and finance. With healthcare being one of the most essential industries today, many companies in this field can benefit from the implementation of agile in healthcare operations.
Benefits of Agile Project Management in Healthcare
Improving healthcare management processes requires a lot of work. But by putting agile project management in place, you can commit to delivering better healthcare solutions. With so many project management processes, such as the Kanban methodology, now easily accessible to everyone, implementation of agile project management is no longer that big of a challenge. If successfully executed, here are some of the benefits of carrying out agile project management in healthcare.
1. Fosters Innovation
With the use of agile project management in healthcare, process improvements can be easily achieved. With the growing demand for better health solutions and medical services, it’s important for healthcare companies to innovate. Whether it’s to improve their procedures of attending to patients, procuring medical supplies and equipment, or handling manpower to ensure constant availability of medical personnel, innovation is necessary. With the implementation of agile project management, hospitals and healthcare-related companies can commit to continuously improve or kaizen their procedures to be able to deliver quality solutions to those in need.
2. Supports Point of Care Technology
As digital technology continues to give birth to better solutions to our daily life, it only makes sense to also adopt new tools and innovations for enhancing the delivery of healthcare services. To make it easier for medical personnel and clinicians to improve their point of care documentation as well as patient care and monitoring. Many computer and mobile applications are now made available for both medical professionals and the public to improve the way healthcare services are delivered. Through agile project management in healthcare, it will be easier for professionals in the medical field to provide reliable services to their patients.
3. Enhances Communication
Clear communication lines are crucial in the medical field. With a better way to communicate between doctors, nurses, medical technologists, pharmacists and other professionals in a healthcare company, the easier it will be to pass on important details between patients’ cases, primary care needs, health management, and more. Agile healthcare fosters clear communication, which can help eliminate unnecessary back and forth, shortening the time needed to deliver important information about any specific medical case and shift the focus on what is important.
4. Improves Response to Changes
With an agile team handling the healthcare operations, the cycle time between tasks and projects can be shortened. To make the most of your manpower and resources, one of your primary goals should be to continuously improve your processes. And with agile project management, you get to improve how you complete tasks and easily cope with the ever-changing demand in the industry. For example, if you are looking into speeding up your emergency care services, you might want to consider implementing the Kanban methodology to see to it that workload is leveled across all stations in the emergency room. You can also assign someone to be the flow manager to make sure that your medical personnel is properly redirected wherever they are needed. This can help you make sure that you are providing quality healthcare services and addressing the concerns of your emergency patients as soon as possible.
5. Implements Clear Key Metrics
How do you measure your healthcare team’s effectiveness in responding to patient’s needs? To help you understand how well your team is doing and to understand what your room for improvements are, it’s important to set clear goals and key metrics for your team. All of your team members, no matter what their function is, should know what is expected of them when it comes to productivity. These key metrics should be transparent and clear so it’s essential that your team has taken time to discuss this firsthand. As a part of your agile project management in healthcare, you must plan these key metrics and involve your whole team in the planning. This way, everyone is in agreement and are clear of what they need to meet and why the key metrics you have were set as they are.
6. Empowers Team to be Self-Organized
To maintain constant productivity and to guarantee the same level of service 24/7, healthcare facilities should see to it that their medical teams are enabled to be self-organizing. To do this, it’s important to invest in the skills and capabilities of each of your team members. They should be able to rely on their own knowledge and experience in medical operations so that they can make sound decisions without having to consult their supervisors constantly, unless otherwise necessary. With a self-organized team, you can rest assured that your medical staff can maintain normal operations at all times.
7. Supports Sharing of Insights and Resources
The good thing about the implementation of agile project management in healthcare companies is that data is given utmost importance. This is why everyone in the team must be encouraged to gather and share insights and data to help improve the overall operations and hospital management process. Sharing these resources with everyone across the team is crucial, especially if it can help improve how quality healthcare solutions can be implemented. To do this, you can take advantage of the capabilities of a virtual Kanban board to easily record files, references and resource links to share with everyone in the team.
8. Boosts Focus on Quality Output
Overall, the goal of using agile project management in healthcare systems is quality. By planning your processes and key metrics, training and preparing your team, creating sound and informed decisions and investing your resources to implement efficient processes, you can empower your team to deliver quality healthcare services to patients across all sectors, be it clinical consultations, emergency, and intensive care, medical laboratory operations, and facility sanitation.
During these critical times, wherein healthcare facilities are expected to perform to the best of their abilities, it’s essential for medical teams to exercise constant vigilance to efficiently deliver reliable healthcare solutions to the public. If you are looking for a business tool to help enable agile project management efforts in your healthcare facility, check out Kanban Zone. Get ready to collaborate better, deliver value faster and manage projects more efficiently with this online Kanban board.