This change vortex has a profound impact on how we pick new people to join our IT department. By necessity, my own organization's approach to IT staffing is to “grow our own,” and because IT is a catalyst for change, we screen applicants for the aptitude to not only accept but to lead change. This capability is essential to “move the dial” and facilitate change most efficiently and, therefore, most economically.
Our staff-development plans include specific industry and vendor certifications, as well as training in Lean processes, meeting management, communication planning and project management competencies. The mastery of these skills, with the demonstrated ability to lead large and strategically important initiatives, determines career advancement.
In the past year, I have spoken to many individuals who were surprised to learn how important it is for health IT professionals to have the capacity to think creatively. Because a key competency for health IT staff is to solve problems, creative thinking is essential.
In our IT workspace, the visual evidence of this creativity is the beautiful photography of our health IT staff. Photos were submitted for a contest to decorate our new building, and the winners, chosen through private ballot, were enlarged for display. However, the more concrete evidence of IT staff creativity is our ability to meet aggressive timelines, secure our infrastructure and work within budget.
We continually re-engineer processes to drive better outcomes. Typically, the area requiring the most change is the essential communication to clarify roles and responsibilities to avoid the consequences of assumptions. Given the wisdom of 20/20 hindsight, before every strategic project formally closes, IT management facilitates an after action review (AAR). During these frank conversations, all stakeholders gather face-to-face to discuss: