Strategic IT Planning and Strategy
Act now to solve issues before they become crises. Strategic planning gives you the framework for making daily decisions guided by a larger vision, directing your practice, and taking full advantage of external factors.
The urgency with which environmental elements modify a group’s surroundings is the most important component in strategic planning. “Physicians who try to continue doing as they have in the past five years will be disadvantaged,” asserts Dawn Holcombe, MBA, Chairman of the South Windsor, Connecticut DGH Consulting. “Things they may not even be aware of could have an impact on their practice.”
Participating in the strategic planning process has advantages in addition to the plan it generates. First, having everyone in the same space encourages collegiality and provides a setting for focusing on the business path rather than patient care and other responsibilities. The strategy also promotes a free-flowing exchange of ideas, where disagreements are presented, and workable solutions are developed (Hill, Walker, & Hale 2015).
Professional guidelines should be established, along with long-term objectives, which serve as the foundation for short- and long-term strategic planning. In the current healthcare industry, a long-term strategy will probably not extend beyond the next three years. The group should meet at least once a year after the original planning session to continue the strategic course. The partners should review the practice objectives, update the environmental assessment with new information, and develop strategies for dealing with issues over the following 12 months. For instance, an inheritance plan might need to be made as one or more partners get closer to leaving the partnership. Meanwhile, physician and mid-level recruitment strategies may be needed to increase the inpatient volume.
The foundation is the mission and values: The initial step in strategic planning and the cornerstone of the procedure is creating a mission statement, which describes the organization’s essential purpose. Users could believe that setting the mission is a pointless bureaucratic exercise, but choosing its purpose is a learning experience. The strategy creates the framework for other priority settings and compels shareholders to consider and articulate the practice’s objectives. Does the overarching mission offer cancer patients top-notch care? And what about the study? Does the course have an educational goal to help the neighborhood? This type of question helps to clarify the group’s main goal.
Where are we going with our vision?
As the group’s mission and values are established, the next phase is to decide what kind of practice the user desires. Once again, Yogi Berra’s advice holds: “If you don’t know where you’re going, somewhere else you will come up.” A vision statement, whether a short statement or a longer document, paints the intended picture of how the profession will be in the future. Would we like credit for curing a particular kind of cancer? Is your clinical research advancing our vision? Would it be desirable to have a network of practice locations? Your practice environment must align with the group’s vision. Therefore, while strategically pursuing our plans, our assessment of the internal and external realities included in the SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis will prompt us to somewhat reconsider our views.
SWOT Analysis: A key component of strategic planning, the SWOT analysis evaluates the opportunities, threats, and weaknesses of our practice. Both quantitative and qualitative data are included in this study, the majority of which must be gathered and assessed before the planning conference. There is no ideal strategy for structuring and carrying out a SWOT analysis; instead, there are many different approaches. The group’s size impacts the process, the frequency of the strategic planning meetings, and the quick changes occurring nationally and locally (J, Oncol, Pract. 2009).
Internal assessment: Information on internal strengths and weaknesses includes financial reporting and pharmaceutical expenses per full-time equivalent physician. The practice’s effectiveness and quality should be evaluated compared to data on other cancer practices (Sources for Benchmarking Data provides references for finding this data). 2009; J. Oncol. Pract.
External assessment: risks and opportunities: Population, economic trends, reference patterns, and market competitiveness empirical data should be used to determine whether they present risks or opportunities. Along with the local picture, it is important to consider the larger context, which includes the regional health system and changes in reimbursement and regulation. An oncological market forces expert is frequently required for environmental analysis, even though doctors and staff in some groups are aware of local, regional, and national changes.
The group should decide on strategic options to move the practice from its current state to the desired future position after a complete picture of the practice and its surroundings has developed. Be aware of the risks involved in discussing operational issues and attempting to choose tactics over strategies. For instance, implementing the electronic medical record system might be a wise strategic move. However, there are better venues for discussing available techniques, desirable industries, or required education than the strategic planning meeting. Employees allocated to the action plan handle such details (J, Oncol, Pract. 2009).
Plan of Action: When developing strategies, prioritize a small number (two to five) of workable approaches and create corresponding action plans. Because it was too difficult or ambitious, much strategic planning could have been done better. Never attempt to exploit an opportunity or overcome a problem that your SWOT analysis identified. While certain goals may be necessary, others can be accomplished in a year or two. Those goals are still important and can be accomplished by updating our strategy during an annual strategic planning meeting.
Hill, D., Walker, J., & Hale, J. (2015). Privacy considerations for health information exchanges. Medical Data Privacy Handbook, 289-311.https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-23633-9_12
J, Oncol, Pract. (2009). Strategic planning: Why it makes a difference and how to do it. (2009). Journal of Oncology Practice, 5(3), 139-143. https://doi.org/10.1200/jop.0936501. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2790676/
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We looked at several topics on global IT strategies, technologies, models, and networking during this session. As you get closer to starting your own dissertation, you will need to choose a topic in your first dissertation class, DSRT-736, so it is essential to start preparing.
This week, let us take a look at some topics to consider, and by the end of the week, we could have several ideas for dissertation topics. Since you have already examined several research articles, another way would be to examine previous dissertations in these areas. Visit the University of Cumberland’s library, go to the Dissertation Database, and locate an interesting topic on global IT. Here are some pointers that will help critically evaluate some viable topics.
- Is the topic attainable for a first-time dissertation student?
- Is the problem rooted in the literature?
- Is the research empirical, i.e., is there a survey, is there an interview guide, and has the data been analyzed via some statistical tool?
- Is there a theoretical model or framework discussed?
Discuss the topic, the problem the model has been used in the research, and any present findings. Do not read the entire dissertation, as the abstract and chapter one introduction should give a clear understanding of the research.
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