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The rearview mirror: Bye-bye 2017

We are blessed to speak with many interesting professionals who work in this unique business. Reviewing copious amounts of notes and information compiled this year, several themes became apparent. Below we highlight 6 of the most commonly mentioned.   

 

1) Facilities and the patient experience. Facility departments are most assuredly part of creating a positove experience for patients and their families. Maintaining a clean and inviting environment, communicating with patients and clinical partners, and including facilitites in strategy discussions to improve HCAHPS scores were all part of the experience in 2017. 

 

2) Work order management. Work order management and close-out, and utilizing work order systems to their full potential, continue to impact departments. The volume of requests and the challenge of finding time to get CMMS systems up and running properly remain issues.

 

3) Data, metrics and measurements. The capability to provide customers information relative to their work order requests is essential to providing good customer service. Informing people that for today, hanging your bulletin board is not a priority may not be a popular message to deliver. Real time reports via dashboards, Stop Light Reports, or formal customer follow up generated by CMMS systems are all methods to enable 2-way communication. 

 

4) Stability sought.  Professionals accept that change is part of today’s reality, but they seek stable and respectful organizations. “I want to go where I can stay and that is becoming harder to do. I love the challenge and working with my guys, but it’s all about the dollar for my organization. I want an organization that values me,” says one facility professional.  

 

4) Communication and change. Facility Directors are increasingly challenged to act as a change agent due to consolidation, re-organization, and systemization. Re-enforce employee roles and responsibilities and practice proactive management by walking around and being visible. Communicate, and over-communicate, during times of change.  

 

6) Mission commitment. Despite the stresses and challenges of their daily duties, the majority of professionals are steadfast in their desire to make a difference in the patient experience. But, and it’s a significant but, some are wearing down and entertaining the thought of finding a more stable professional environment.  

 

Honorable Mention

1) Expansion and pushing care to the community means systems and stand-alones are increasing accountabilities for FM management. The need for speed and the demands of “faster, faster, faster” increase while staff decrease and square footage increase.  

 

2) Aging facilities need miracle workers. FM pro’s are increasingly overwhelmed with responsibility as middle management, administrative assistance, and line staff are eliminated. Said one director to us at the 2016 ASHE Annual, a quote still relevant today, “I have no more rabbits to pull out of my hat.”

 

 

 

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Gosselin Associates provides facilities management search consulting to the health care industry...

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