“There are only three measurements that tell you nearly everything you need to know about your organization’s overall performance: employee engagement, customer satisfaction, and cash flow…It goes without saying that no company, small or large, can win over the long run without energized employees who believe in the mission and understand how to achieve it” – Jack Welch, former CEO of GE
With employee accountability, employees believe in the mission and understand how to achieve it. If Welch’s words are true, without employee accountability your healthcare organization can’t achieve high levels of employee engagement, customer satisfaction and revenue. In healthcare, organizations are weighed down by compliance issues, government healthcare reform, and regulatory requirements. Therefore, employee accountability initiatives can sometimes take a back seat. For example, tracking employees’ mandatory training requirements put in place by regulatory bodies is usually a daunting task for the teams that manage compliance. Healthcare organizations must be ready at a moment’s notice to provide documentation to accreditation and regulatory bodies or risk non-compliance. Connecting employee accountability to learning may not be on a learning administrator’s “to-do list” – especially considering that keeping track of training requirements on spreadsheets and paper-based systems is unmanageable and inefficient for most healthcare organizations. For example, by tracking learning with paper-based systems, it’s difficult to track training by department or job function. This is particularly relevant to large healthcare organizations or for staff members who deal with high acuity patients. There’s a better way to track employee education credentials and avoid non-compliance: use a learning management system.
Among other things, a learning management system (LMS) can make it easier to track employee education and training, respond to audits, and avoid non-compliance penalties. However, upon conducting research for the latest HealthcareSource white paper, 5 Ways a Learning Management System Can Improve Compliance for Healthcare Organizations, I also realized that learning management systems can promote greater employee accountability by increasing learner engagement.
With a learning management system, employees are held accountable for tracking their own credentials, continuing education credits, and mandatory training online. The LMS serves as an active “check list” of their qualifications and causes them to be more proactively aware of the training that needs to be completed before their performance review. Employees are also able to send learning administrators information about certifications and licensures so they can track off-site credits online.
Learning management systems also allow for greater flexibility for employees. Online courses and training can be completed at any location, 24 hours per day, seven days a week. Sheryl Ewert, Learning Management Administrator at The University of Kansas Hospital, notes: “Our employees’ focus is patient care. We try to make training easier for employees, not an obstacle that prevents them from doing their jobs.” Tracking mandatory training and credentials should be made as easy as possible for employees so that they can focus their efforts on delivering quality patient care.
When healthcare organizations utilize a learning management system, they are in turn promoting greater employee satisfaction for their learning administrators by decreasing the hours spent tracking credentials with a paper process. “Before we had to jump through a lot of hoops to make sure everyone was trained. We had to manually maintain a training schedule and ensure that everyone completed the required content. Now with an LMS, we’ve transferred from Post-its to an online platform for tracking employee training information,” said Suji Iyer, Director of Learning and Development Solutions at Barnabas Health.
The University of Kansas Hospital has seen significant growth in their employees’ learning after implementing their LMS. The better equipped employees are to do their job, the easier it is for healthcare organizations to hold them accountable for doing it well. Ewert explained: “An LMS supports easier access to training, reduces travel costs, and decreases the amount of time that employees need away from patient care activities.”
Download our new white paper, 5 Ways a Learning Management System Can Improve Compliance for Healthcare Organizations to learn how an LMS will help your organization improve compliance and employee engagement, along with vendor selection questions and implementation strategies.