The rise of digital platforms to support decision-making in the nursing sector

May 25, 2020, 05:48 AM by Lori Furey

Digitization of hospital processes represents a concrete and measurable approach to creating opportunities for automation and cost-containment across patient-based service infrastructures. Unfortunately, many hospitals and departments for that matter, are not equally fortunate and have yet to see technology optimize their processes.

It’s about modernizing traditional models and creating new efficiencies

One of the pressing questions faced by hospital executives is how to solve quickly and cost-effectively the scheduling challenges that have compounded in the nursing sector over the years. These scheduling problems exist because correctly balancing all the rules and constraints of nurses’ schedules against the human variables behind them proves tremendously complex and challenging without access to the right decision-support tools.

New technology-driven solutions have started to emerge that could potentially solve some of those scheduling challenges that have far-reaching consequences, from nurses' work-life balance to resource management. Hospital management and healthcare executives have now access to innovative digital solutions that can help streamline nursing scheduling processes and allow nurses to focus on patient care rather than departmental staffing. These new management tools with robust data analytics can transform the nursing sector with process automation, web-enabled access and decision-support tools. Leveraging years of Canadian healthcare expertise, Logibec offers an educated perspective on nurse scheduling problems and provides the Canadian healthcare sector with a robust and effective staff scheduling solution.

 

Understanding the concerns of administrators and decision-makers

Much of the time spent by hospital administrators is set on minimizing administrative costs through containment of unnecessary events like overtime and absenteeism. In each of these situations, a hospital is forced to invest time and resources to address preventable workforce challenges that negatively impact its bottom line and ability to plan forward. Ideally, there should be an automated system that operates like a second set of eyes to oversee nurses’ schedules and minimize the occurrence of redundant activities and time-consuming checks and balances.

When a nurse doesn't wait for a request to be approved and calls in a last-minute change to the schedule, schedulers have to react as quickly as possible in order to prevent short staffing. This situation is frustrating because schedulers have to drop everything and make urgent changes without efficient tools to quickly find last minute shift replacements while keeping rules, such as seniority and who has the right skills for the shift, into consideration. There is a domino-effect on other processes impacted by this change and the cycle of inefficiency continues, perpetuation the problem of rising operational costs.

The need to take a step back and look at the larger overall picture and find an inclusive strategy to standardize nurse scheduling is now imperative. One method to achieve leaner operations is by automating processes to help reduce manual administrative work that is redundant and uneconomical. Doing this transforms the workforce management process into a single, accurate source of actionable data that is shareable and reportable. Decision-makers will benefit from reliable workforce information to understand trends, monitor performance, prevent unnecessary overtime and remember work preferences in order to deliver a more efficient working environment. By connecting schedules and requests management under one roof, everyone would benefit from a unified digital platform that streamlines the scheduling process in real-time while being able to monitor employee attendance at a granular level.

 

Logibec improves data-driven decision-making in the nursing sector

Transforming the nurse scheduling experience to benefit all the stakeholders at once, from nurses to hospital executives, is now something within hospitals’ reach. Logibec’s Scheduling & Analytics platform was designed to eliminate redundancies and provide accurate, relevant information at the right time throughout the many stages of the scheduling life-cycle. Hospitals can benefit today from a centralized and fully integrated scheduling system that provides all-in-one support and leads to better decision making. The system helps decision-makers mitigate the high costs structure associated with carrying out long-term planning based on trial-and-error and decreases the difficulties associated with accurately tracking employee attendance.

Logibec has made scheduling more efficient and accessible than ever for nurses and management teams alike. With a central platform, updated in real-time and accessible from a any web-enabled device, it offers an inclusive view of the nursing schedule with built-in notifications to always keep nurses informed of changes to their personal schedules. This leads to fewer instances of unnecessary overtime and staff shortages and offers more efficient communication channels making information accessible, in real-time.

 

A fully integrated scheduling solution that improves the employee experience

Providing quality patient care, made possible through reduced administrative burden, is the ultimate benefit of a unified scheduling solution.  Schedule management is transformed through digital and automated processes, decision-support tools, and advanced reporting and analytics that ensure schedulers and management have the right information, at the right time to make important decisions. Logibec Scheduling & Analytics helps improve budget control, collective agreement compliance and minimizes situations that could lead to overtime.  By increasing the autonomy of nurses with their schedule, changes can be requested via the application and approved, by the scheduler or manager, displaying an updated schedule for all employees affected.  The system thereby provides nurses with an improved employee experience, opportunities to achieve a better work-life balance and allows executives insight into real-time information and analytics to better guide strategic planning and growth.