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Getting Nurse Buy-In On Your Patient Belongings Tracking Initiative

Jun 29, 2021
TOPIC: Asset Tracking
3 min read

Today, the patient experience matters more than ever. If you’re in a role that actively manages the patient experience, you’re always looking for ways to improve—and one simple place is to improve the tracking of a patient’s belongings.

Of course, even though you’ve identified a workflow to improve with automation, it doesn’t mean smooth sailing unless you get the right buy-in to the solution.

Clinicians, especially nurses, are frequently exposed to new technology. They interact with new clinical tools and administrative IT systems frequently, while at the same time staying on the front line of patient care and experience. Gaining the buy-in of your nursing staff is critical for successful technology implementation.

How do you get buy-in from nurses and other end users for your patient belongings tracking implementation?

Important Factors for Buy-In

First, buy-in requires both a personal and professional commitment to actively participate in the change. It is an investment for which the employee expects to see a result. Some of the factors that motivate buy-in include:

  • Effective initial engagement: From the start, it’s important to communicate the goals and expected benefits from the solution. This is most effective if those goals and benefits can be expressed as a direct benefit to the nurse directly. Improving efficiency and reducing the time spent on administrative duties is a key benefit of the automation of patient belongings tracking. Details of how this is accomplished are found in our blog post, How to automate the tracking of patient belongings and patient valuables.
  • Adequate time and focus: Time is in short supply for the nursing staff who must prioritize on quality nursing care. When employees feel that there is not enough time to address their core responsibilities, they may decide to ignore new initiatives. Similarly, if there are too many side projects or new initiatives, interest and buy-in can decrease.
  • Building and maintaining trust: Trust is complicated, it takes time to build but can be lost in an instant. Trust in implementation leaders and the process is critical. It promotes communication and collaboration, as well as enhancing team morale. Qualities that an implementation leader should display include confidence, expertise, integrity, and professionalism. What you do means more than what you say. Also, have nurses dealt with failed implementations in the past? If so, this can’t be ignored. Acknowledge the issue, explain what was learned and the changes made as a result, and be transparent through the new initiative.

Practical actions to promote buy-in

Keeping the above factors in mind, here are some practical steps you can take to ensure buy-in of your patient belongings tracking solution.

  • Involve Nursing Staff from the beginning: Getting someone on board with a change is much easier when they’ve contributed early on. Make the initial engagement with nursing staff count so that they see the initiative as a positive opportunity to create something new, valuable, and exciting. Use this time to get feedback from them on how the patient belongings tracking application can smoothly integrate with their processes.
  • Get the word out: You need to show how and why this new solution will improve current practices. Communicate how the new patient belongings tracking application increases the efficiency of Nursing, Security, and other staff. Reducing the administrative overhead for these users allows them to focus on their core job responsibilities. As you deploy into new areas you can provide evidence of realized benefits from your pilot or initial implementation. Having hard data is an eye-opener.
  • Identify champions for your initiative: Recruit influential individuals from the nursing staff to serve as change champions advocating the change from within a team. Peers can often have more influence on coworkers than other stakeholders. Champions will work with and support front-line staff, evangelize the value and benefits of the solution and promote buy-in. Support your champions so that they’re successful in their role. For example, if new mobile hardware is part of the solution, make sure they are comfortable with navigating the device and with basic functions like barcode scanning.
  • Keep a close eye on the initial implementation and beyond: Frequently check in to see how the nurses are doing. Some one-on-one training or minor adjustments may be beneficial to keep things running smooth. Continue to monitor the implementation after deployment.

End-user buy-in is critical for the success of any initiative. With all the demands on a nurse’s schedule, buy-in can be especially challenging. Keeping these tips in mind can help ensure the success of your patient belongings tracking application.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT INTELLITRACK PATIENT BELONGINGS TRACKING HERE.

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