We Don’t Take Care of the Patients
Posted on 6/26/2012, by David Watts
Human Capital Corner - tackling the subjects that keep VPs of HR awake at night
I was working recently with one of our healthcare clients and their Human Resources team and we were discussing the possibility of getting funding to implement new modules within their SAP HR landscape. In that conversation, one of their team members made an interesting comment. They said, “Getting approval is always hard for us. We’re not the ones at the bedside taking care of the patients.”
Of course, the point was rather obvious. In a healthcare environment it is the doctors, nurses, and other patient-care employees who naturally receive the lion’s share of funding. As it relates to technology, the priority for funding is on those technologies and medical devices which directly impact patient care.
So I definitely understand the statement, “We don’t take care of the patients.”
Or do we?
I made the following point with our client and will touch on it briefly here: While we don’t take care of the patients, we take care of those who do take care of the patients.
How can we expect to attract and recruit the world’s brightest healthcare professionals if we don’t have the tools and processes which empower us to compete in this scarce labor pool? If we don’t know our organization’s talent requirements, if we don’t have the tools that help us reward brilliant performance on the part of our healthcare professionals, if we are not cultivating a culture of learning that leverages powerful Learning Management Solutions – how will doctors, nurses, therapists and technicians take care of the patients if we do not take care of them first?
Extend this perspective to any other industry: the people, the solutions, and the processes at work within our HR organizations are critical to the life and work of the organization. While the HR team doesn’t design the latest safety features into the newest Boeing jet, they take care of the people who do. The HR team at Apple won’t be designing the next iPhone. But they will attract, retain, hire, and grow the brilliant people who will design the next iPhone and the one after that. And even at this very moment, the HR team at Apple is busy trying to recruit the next wave of brilliant minds who will invent the products we haven’t yet realized we so desperately need.
It serves to remind me that the technology, solutions and processes we use in the HR world have one key purpose: empower the business to meet its goals and objectives with that most precious resource of all: Human Capital.