Health Service Executive Managing Healthcare Projects Performance Measurement Baseline Digital Transformation in healthcare project management software Implementing Healthcare Projects

The Biggest Problem Managing Healthcare Projects

The Biggest Problem Managing Healthcare Projects? You (plural)

Almost all the challenges for managing projects in the healthcare sector are well known and have been widely written about.

As with health care itself, the biggest challenge of course is the constantly spiraling costs. The Harvard School of Public Health sums it up as follows;

“These (cost) issues, coupled with new electronic health records systems, regulations, and technologies have drastically enhanced the need for (improved) project management in healthcare.”

All of which is true. But it doesn’t address the biggest problem of all when it comes to implementing healthcare projects. Which is culture.

Size matters

Wherever you work in the sector, whether it be in frontline care or in providing those carers with the products and services they need, you will almost certainly be working as part of a large organization. And one that’s only getting bigger. And these organizations have had to move with the times.

In the old days, each building had a guy, and it was always a guy, who gave a nod and that was that. But today, each of the relevant stakeholders need to be included in whatever the conversation is, right from the off. Which of course is exactly as it should be.

Each of those stakeholders will have a very particular perspective, with their own, distinct set of goals. Which isn’t an issue, and, again, is only as it should be. But it is a challenge that can become a problem if it’s not addressed. And it almost never is. Which is why, invariably, it ends up being the main problem.

More than having the right software or even having access to sufficient funds, this is the biggest challenge.

There’s no point in defining and scoping a project, if you can’t all agree on which of the problems need to be most urgently addressed. And you won’t all agree on that, unless you’ve first come together as a group. And that’s down to leadership.

Leading from the front

It’s up to the senior stakeholders to ensure that they are each singing from the same hymn sheet. Specifically, it’s up to you. You (singular) need to consciously implement a plan of action, to bring you (plural) together as a group. Because if you don’t do it, there’s every chance that it won’t happen.

It’s vital that everyone realizes that those individual goals need to be subsumed within the greater, overall good of the organization as a whole. Because if that’s not understood, culturally speaking, then none of those other goals are likely to be met. And that organization will continue being dysfunctional until someone does something about it.

So before you all start thinking about which problems most urgently need to be addressed, and what therefore the best solution is, and regardless of where you work in the healthcare sector, you need to start thinking about the most pressing challenge of all. Organizational culture. And that’s something that is shaped by leadership.

Get that right, and everything else will be considerably easier. Not easy. But definitely easier. Because instead of being something that everyone resists, change will become something that everyone working there welcomes. And then you can start thinking about those solutions.