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The abundance of data: Content management best practices

Cathy Pic
Cathy Fuhrman, EMEA Healthcare Industry Manager, Hyland, creator of OnBase

The healthcare industry is inundated with content, whether it be financial, administrative or clinical in nature. The size and amount of content grows every day. With this growth comes the need to manage this content. Whether the organization is an integrated delivery network (IDN) or a single hospital, this is an incredible challenge.

Here are some best practices to help ensure the organization’s content is properly secured and accessible by the appropriate people.

Consistently review your content management practices

The initial deployment of software represents only a portion of the total investment of time and resources. However, it’s critical to continue to review your solution to ensure it is providing the biggest benefit to the organization. Once a solution is deployed, its initial usage should be reviewed at one month, six months, and one year. It is important to provide the departments meaningful reports of adoption while also sharing this information at the enterprise level.

Enterprise content management solutions are designed to evolve as business needs change. Flexible and configurable, these systems can scale to grow with the organization and provide greater value. The value of these solutions can only be fully leveraged if organizations revisit the usage of the system. The most common measures include the adoption rate and time spent searching for content. Check to make sure the appropriate staff members can find content within their primary applications and that users aren’t employing work-around methods to undermine the solution.

Insightful reports require attention to detail

Providing more detail in our daily content management activities drives more insightful reports into how organizations leverage the system and how to drive additional efficiencies.

Prior to joining Hyland, I worked as an Information Systems Manager at Sharp HealthCare in San Diego, California. During Sharp HealthCare’s journey to achieve its HIMSS Stage 7 designation, we learned through our detailed reports that we were still creating nearly 100,000 pieces of paper content per week. This was a result of work-around solutions and user resistance, which will nearly always occur with new technology.

Although the amount of paper still being generated was a shock to our executives, we were able to leverage our steering committee to help improve user adoption, unifying our records and driving paper out of the system.  

One of my colleagues once told me “one of the most expensive fluids on the planet is ink,” and I couldn’t agree more.

Align steering committee with charter and goals

Most of us realize things don’t change overnight. However, it’s more difficult to accept this idea when you’re installing a solution over several years.

When implementing new technology, especially enterprise content management solutions that work across several departments, it’s essential to be strategic. To this end, it’s imperative to assemble a steering committee of executives from various parts of the organization to provide their feedback and support for the project and to communicate the importance of adoption and ongoing monitoring.

The committee should work from a short and simple charter, illustrating what the group is designed to accomplish and how you intend to achieve your goals. The team will be an immensely powerful tool in driving user adoption, continued value and better patient care. Dashboard reporting shows executives and department managers if the solution is being adopted, or if a department is struggling and needs assistance. The simple truth is that we will never be done improving access to content. Improving patient care is a marathon, not a sprint.

ECM, Enterprise content management, Hyland, steering committee