Digital transformation is the integration of technology into a business, the goal is for its implementation to increase value through innovation, efficiency or the experience of the people you support. Digital transformation has been proven to improve the quality and safety of care being delivered.
Although we are firmly in the digital era, only around 30% of care providers are partially digitalised. In this week’s blog, I look at some of the benefits and share my top tips for digital transformation.
The benefits of digital transformation
There are many benefits to digitally transforming your service. However, when I reflect back on my digital journey, these were my top five.
- Improved efficiency by reducing manual processes and tasks which allowed staff to focus on the people they were supporting.
- Improved transparency and in turn trust with stakeholders.
- Enabled us to collate and utilise data to improve the delivery of care, which resulted in better outcomes such as reduced falls, identifying health concerns and responding quicker where needed.
- Increased accessibility for the people we supported.
- Improved communication between us (the care provider), the people being supported, their families and other stakeholders.
Tips for going digital
If you’re ready to embrace digitalisation, these are my top five tips for making it happen.
- Have a strategy in place
This focuses on what you want to achieve and how digital technology supports those goals. Your strategy for digitalisation should:
- Ensure you consider change management and any setbacks that may arise from your team. You can read about change management here.
- Consider the people you support and ensure that the digital implementation will benefit them.
- Understand your current digital and technology footprint and the roadmap for where you want to be.
- Identify security and privacy concerns and ensure measures are put in place to protect data.
- Establish a budget and allocate the appropriate resources.
- Create a clear communication plan
This will help promote your digital plan, inspire collaboration and minimise misunderstandings. You’ll need to:
- Ensure everyone within the business regardless of their role knows what’s happening and is involved. It is important to ensure everyone is onboard and understands the benefits.
- Identify how you communicate with staff throughout the process, this will help you understand any skill or knowledge gaps so you provide opportunities for your team to upskill.
- Take time to gather feedback and address concerns.
- Remember change management techniques during this stage too.
- Do your research
Make sure that the technology you choose is fit for purpose. To gather feedback, you could:
- Speak to other care providers, utilise manager forums and networking to hear people’s positive and negative feedback.
- Utilise social media with polls and surveys etc.
- Check service providers’ contracts so you are not tied into long durations.
- Observe the people you support to gather feedback on what technology is needed to meet their needs.
- Be adaptable and prepared for change
This will allow you to think innovatively and problem-solve better.
- Measure the success of digital transformation
This step is often overlooked but it’s important for so many reasons. Defining performance indicators and measuring progress means you’ll be able to:
- Identify if you are on track to meet goals and deadlines.
- Identify areas that need improvement.
- Make decisions based on evidence.
- Increase accountability.