By Chris Christy, Industry Principal, SAP BusinessObjects
Today, healthcare workers are mobile workers, and hospitals must give mobility strategy the same level of importance as IT strategy. Now, when hospitals are between limited mobile adoption and complete mobilization of the enterprise, is the time to think about priorities and objectives for a mobility strategy. By leveraging currently available mobile technology, hospitals can create a cohesive mobility roadmap that drives business value, manages IT cost and risk, and extends healthcare operations and analytics to the world of mobile devices.
As the diagram below illustrates, the potential for high-value mobilization across the enterprise ecosystem is tremendous.
A mobile strategy requires a mobile platform. A Mobile Enterprise Application Platform (MEAP) provides a backbone of common technology for building, deploying, and managing applications that can access any back-end database and run on any mobile device. The Four Pillars of Mobility – Create, Connect, Consume, and Control – provide a complete enterprise mobility stack with unmatched integration into SAP and other systems for secure access to business processes anytime, anywhere, and on any device:
1) Creation of mobile business applications with an intuitive interface will drive process performance and customer outreach to differentiate hospitals like never before.
2) Connection demands a platform that integrates back-end data from any source and delivers onto heterogeneous devices that operate on multiple networks and operating systems.
3) Control of user access necessitates governance to protect employee and patient information, as well as hospital intellectual property, in the case of device theft or loss.
4) Consumption requires a platform for collaboration. Data captured by a mobile application will be useful to many people inside and outside the walls of the business. If the mobile application serves a business process that has dependencies, everyone involved in related processes will need access.
In addition, hospitals can empower its professionals with critical patient care insight, regardless of where they are located, by incorporating enterprise analytics and reporting into its mobile strategy. By empowering the workforce with access to Business Intelligence (BI) on device, hospitals can stay competitive in today’s healthcare environment.
Another important factor when bringing hospitals to mobility is innovation. We are at the cusp of witnessing a transformation of the enterprise due to mobilizing internal operations and physician collaboration, as well as the hospital-to-patient relationship. SAP recommends a Mobility Discovery session with your hospital business and IT process owners to discuss potential mobile applications across the enterprise value chain.
Existing governance should also be taken into consideration when developing a mobile strategy. HR, Finance, Security, and Legal policies regarding laptop use are already in place; mobility policies should be given at least as much consideration as these policies, if not more.
In conclusion, hospitals have a unique opportunity to drive patient care revenue, improve productivity, and lower the TCO of its IT environment by considering an overall mobility platform strategy with business objectives, a prioritized Mobility Innovation Roadmap, and proper governance protocols. By partnering with SAP and its ecosystem, hospitals can take advantage of the expertise of the players that are setting industry standards, establishing best practices, and assembling a network of user groups to share lessons learned.