Operational continuity in the age of COVID-19 has been difficult for healthcare CIOs. They have been tasked with implementing new technologies like telehealth, while maintaining the safety of their teams and shifting to a work from home environment. In order to prevent long-term disruption, CIOs expect a bigger emphasis on increasing operational efficiency in 2022 while continuing to hold budgets down. The “future of work” depends on the flexibility to work from anywhere, and to redefine IT priorities, focusing on resilience, rebound efforts, and future growth.
Focus on What Matters
Opportunities have increased for automation and digital transformation technologies as CIOs continue to grapple with the fallout from COVID-19, and the great resignation. Automation has stepped up as a great enabler of people, productivity, and business continuity. Brad Cox, Director of Patient Accounts at Northwestern Medicine said, “We had three days to transition everyone to a work-from-home (WFH) environment, with kids, pets, and the challenges of life. Many of these people had never worked from home before. We had to relocate desks, computers, and people. While we focused on people, automation took care of everything else.” The promise of automation is to help people get more done with less. CIOs will continue to integrate new automation projects to focus on the needs of a hybrid workforce, and manage big data across multiple, disparate environments.
Minimize Mental Processes
CIOs seeking to impact their healthcare organizations in 2022 will double down on automation and actionable technologies. With a minimal amount of time in a day, many have already adopted Robotic Process Automation (RPA) to improve time-draining tasks, so that staff can focus mental processes on higher-value work. A recent survey conducted by Gartner states that more than 80% of organizations have continued or increased their spend on automation. 2022 will see CIOs renewing their focus on issues that include:
- Governance, Cybersecurity, and Privacy
- Revenue Cycle and Claims Management
- HR and Change Management Processes
- Population Health and Health Equity Goals
- Data Migrations and Integrations
- Materials Management and Supply Chain Processes
RPA Continues to Experience Rapid Growth
RPA was once again noted as the fastest-growing segment of the enterprise software market, notching a 38.9% increase to hit $1.9 billion in revenues, according to Gartner. The majority of this growth is not driven by organizations adopting RPA for the first time, but rather by teams that are expanding their existing RPA footprint. As we enter a new year, it’s more critical than ever for CIOs to prioritize systems and/or business processes that improve collaboration, increase productivity, and improve the employee experience. The purchase of low-code and no-code tools that are flexible, agile and scalable, like Boston Workstation 20, will continue to increase over the next year. Software “bots” will complete repetitive tasks, system integrations, and multiple transactions from the task level to the enterprise level in 2022.
Building the Scalable Automation Enterprise
The role of automation in a scalable healthcare environment is to reduce the amount of labor required to manage and maintain growth. Employers agree that productivity and engagement do not depend on an on-site workforce. The flexibility of hybrid and remote work environments will continue to drive the future of work. For this reason, it will be important to scale automation tools across the healthcare enterprise. With continued diligence and planning, healthcare can be ready to act when the post-pandemic future arrives.
At Boston Software Systems, we have been successfully aligning technology processes with people for over 30 years. We built and retained a loyal customer base by treating our customers well, and giving them a reason to do business with us again (and again). We keep our promises, and remain true to the level of service our clients have come to expect from us. We’ve worked with all EHR vendors and applications, and provide automation services onsite or in the AWS cloud.