So you have finally come to the realization that your intranet needs a makeover. Like many hospitals we work with, your intranet probably started out as a small project that one of your IT staff worked on in their free time. Over time you may have added links to systems, documents, and whatever other information was given to you to publish. But now, your intranet has evolved into something you never envisioned and you are getting all types of requests for new functionality, better graphics, better search, etc. The problem is your limited IT staff doesn't have the time or expertise to develop the intranet to meet your organizations needs. Sound familiar? Thought so! Here are the top 10 reasons why you need to replace your home grown intranet.
- It looks terrible! Between the clip art and 20 different fonts it looks like a bad version of craigslist. Your marketing department has probably spent a lot of time on branding your hospital, your intranet should support the brand and look and feel professional.
- No one can find anything. If you have to show people where information is on the intranet you need to improve your search and navigation. Locating information should be intuitive and simple.
- No security. People are making changes to documents and other content and you are constantly having to restore from backup or hunt down who made changes. On top of that you are getting requests for secure pages for management teams, physicians, board of directors, etc. Your intranet should have simple group based security for viewing and editing content.
- Turnover. Bob in IT has been building the intranet for years. He has some specialized web skills and know the ins and outs of the system. Well guess what, Bob just put in his two weeks! Now you are stuck trying to wrap your arms around the system and respond to requests for changes and you don't have the first clue where to start. Your intranet should have an easy to use Content Management System as well as support and training resources should someone else need to support it.
- New functionality Requests. The requests for new features keep coming and you don't have the time or expertise internally to develop them. Look for an intranet with "built in" flexible tools for publishing content. If you purchase a CMS you should receive updates with new features and fixes.
- Document Management. You want to replace the shared drives that everyone complains about but don't have the functionality on your intranet to manage documents. Your intranet should support document management including review notifications, collaboration, archiving, read compliance, and searchability.
- Metrics. Management wants to understand more about what pages are utilized the most and how many people are using the system, but you have no way of tracking that. Your intranet should have robust reporting mechanisms that allow you understand how it is used so you can make improvements.
- Decentralized Content Management. Departments want to maintain their own pages and your IT staff don't have time to publish content. Decentralized content management allows departmental staff to update and maintain their own content and is a win win for them and IT. Your intranet should have security in place to restrict who has access to editing content in different areas and provide easy to use intuitive tools for non-technical departmental staff to publish content.
- Compliance. Whether it's Joint Commission, CMS, CAP or any of the other regulatory agencies, one thing remains the same: requirements about making information available to staff. Imagine how impressed they will be when staff are able to produce things like policies and procedures in seconds by quickly searching for them on your intranet.
- System Integrations. You want to publish things like dashboards or clinical content but your home grown solution doesn't have the architecture to support this. Your intranet should include the ability to interface with other systems to automate the updating of information to eliminate duplicate effort for sharing information.
And that's just the top 10! I am sure you have had other challenges with your existing home grown intranet system. The good news is there are solutions to these challenges. At HospitalPORTAL, we offer a healthcare specific content management system for publishing intranet content and managing your policies and procedures. We also provide hands on training and implementation services to help transition from your current system. Want to learn more about how to improve your intranet?