Healthcare leaders have a new challenge: leadership itself. Huron’s survey of healthcare executives, directors and managers reveals their most pressing leadership, talent and culture priorities.
Healthcare leaders today face many of the same challenges as their predecessors: reducing costs, improving organizational efficiency and delivering better patient outcomes. However, with the rapid pace of disruption inside and outside of the industry, current healthcare leaders have a new challenge: leadership itself.
The strategies and resources today’s healthcare leaders use to achieve their goals have also evolved dramatically. Going forward, the ability to access and interpret data will be fundamental to success, according to a Huron survey of 200 leaders from national, regional and federal healthcare organizations.
Decision-Making and Strategy Rooted in Data
Until recently, data management and analytics were relegated to the IT department. Today, healthcare leaders recognize the role data plays in guiding organizations through change and supporting more informed business decisions.
Though 54% of healthcare leaders view data utilization as a top business need, many consider their organizations to be data-rich but insight-poor. Organizations have ample raw data, but leaders are unsure of how to translate data into action that improves organizational, financial and clinical outcomes.
The key to successful data utilization is in determining the right data to analyze and using the findings to create strategies for growth, innovation, cost reduction, greater efficiency, training and development, employee retention and cultural change. These insights can be instrumental in multiple ways:
- Data not only helps identify internal threats or weaknesses but can also assist in uncovering the root causes behind those problems, enabling healthcare leaders and their teams to eliminate them.
- Comprehensive performance insights may be a conduit to innovation in many forms, from building new business models to making strategic technology investments to facilitating transformative partnerships.
- Beyond solving problems within the organization, data also has the power to impact patient satisfaction and outcomes. From predicting and preparing for population health events on a macro level to identifying at-risk patients for a variety of conditions on a micro level, leaders can set up their clinical teams for success in providing higher quality care and creating a personalized patient experience.
Healthcare leaders have the opportunity to transform their organizations if they optimize how the organization collects, analyses and uses data – but they can’t do it alone. To reap the rewards of data, healthcare leaders will have to recruit and develop talent with the skills to support a data-driven organization and a culture that prioritizes innovation.
David Devine is a managing director in Huron's healthcare business.