During this COVID-19 crisis, many of our partners and customers from different industries have asked us for tips on using the adaptive workspace more effectively, now that for many the way of working has changed so much (and may have changed for good). Certainly one of the most affected industries is obviously healthcare, and we want to support our healthcare customers as much as we can. In this article, we’d like to share some suggestions on different ways to use the adaptive workspace to support healthcare staff.
Are you a healthcare organisation? We’d like to offer you support in any way we can. Please contact us to discuss what we can do to help.
Up your communication features for internal information sharing
First of all, communication is key. For most organisations, it is already necessary to communicate to the team on a daily basis to explain the situation and the plans. The best way to do this is by using video messages to make people feel connected. Especially now people don’t see each other as much. If there are any developments, such as policy changes or important updates on work procedures, this information should be directly communicated to the employees.
Relevance over layout: most important information first
If you’re using shared spaces to organise workspaces and you have a special one for intranet features, it may be the time to let that format go for a little while. To ensure this information is the first thing they see whenever employees open their adaptive workspace, you can make sure the Announcement live tile is front and centre on their (personal) dashboard. More urgent announcements, such as sudden policy changes or added safety measures when treating patients, can be pushed to people as a pop-up, so they instantly see it when they open their workspace.
Share Frequenty Asked Questions
If you get the same question multiple times, there’s a big chance there are more people walking around with the same question on their mind. Whether it’s about changes in work schedules or processes, stricter protocols or any other work-related questions. These types of questions could for instance be on when (not) to use face masks, where people can request additional supplies, what the rules and regulations regarding volunteers are or how care takers in care homes should handle group activities.
Use the questions you receive to proactively inform people in your organisation. You could do this in the form of a Frequently Asked Questions list. This way, you do not only proactively answer questions before they get asked over and over again, you also show your employees that you care about their concerns, uncertainties and questions they may have, and you’re trying to inform them to the best of your ability.
Communicate and collaborate through Yammer
It’s important to stay connected. In order to do this, you could use Yammer to share tips and experiences with one another, to communicate challenges and to find out if other people within your organisation are experiencing them as well and how they’re dealing with them. Crowdsource knowledge and ideas and ask for help if needed, whether it’s company-wide or within departments or teams. It’s also a great tool to boost morale and show appreciation for employees and colleagues during the difficult times of the Corona crisis.
Yammer is the most suitable platform for this kind of communication, but you can of course also use Microsoft Teams to communicate. In this article, you can discover more about the difference between Microsoft Teams and Yammer and when to use which.
Make protocols easily accessible
In complicated situations, protocols offer clarity and direction on what to do. And if there were ever complicated times, it’s probably now. So if you haven’t already, make sure that your protocols are easily accessible, whether you integrate them into the Document App or create a Single Sign-On shortcut to your protocol database. In the Netherlands, for instance, Vilans has made their portal with 500 KICK-protocols available for free during the Corona crisis. If your organisation has a need for it, it’s definitely recommended to make use of it.
At the moment, Workspace 365 is working on a Vilans KICK protocol integration which will be released soon.
Teach and educate with e-learning
When new situations, protocols and processes arise, people often do not only need to be informed about them, they need to learn how they work and what exactly to do. In many cases, they need to brush up on other knowledge as well. Especially former care providers lending a hand, people who have been re-educated or people who are helping out at other departments could use some additional educational support. You can use (a space in) the adaptive workspace as a place for e-learning, a learning portal as you will, to educate employees on important topics.
Use video to educate people
You can flood people with documents with guides and step-by-step manuals, but more often than not, it’s easier to show them. So if you want to instruct people on certain topics, video can be a very important tool to do so. Within the adaptive workspace, you can integrate videos separately, or you can integrate entire playlists.
If people for instance need to use the adaptive workspace (more) because they now suddenly have to work remotely, such as healthcare administrative employees, educate them on how to efficiently use the workspace with the How-to live tile.
If hygiene is a big concern for you (as it should), you can try to educate people more on hygiene regulations. This could be as simple as showing people a reminder on the proper way to wash their hands. It could also be a helpful video on how to properly clean and disinfect the devices they use (and may bring with them to patients), such as their smartphones and tablets.
Using video can also be helpful to show people how to take appropriate precautions against COVID-19, and how to properly test and treat patients.
Increase technical support for remote and mobile employees
Care providers in particular have enough to deal with right now. Don’t make them go through the hassle of getting IT support. Instead, make it come to them.
Integrate a chat function
In order to enable care providers to focus on their primary tasks as much as possible, you can integrate a chat function or chatbot within the workspace. This allows people to instantly ask their questions from the workspace itself, and get immediate support. This minimises the amount of time someone has to go looking for IT support or has to wait on a reply to that email they sent a while ago, and allow them to promptly continue with their work
Start using support software
If you don’t have the time or capacity to make a chat service work, or if it’s simply not a good fit for your organisation, you could also consider integrating a support system such as TOPdesk and ConnectWise. Both have an integration within the adaptive workspace, so people can see the status of their open support tickets at any time, while IT support employees also instantly see all the (open) tickets that have been appointed to them.
Move your meetings and consults online
This may be an obvious one, and if you’re able to do so, you’re probably already doing it. Many ambulatory care workers have for instance already moved their daily schedule meetings to video conferencing software, such as Microsoft Teams. However, if you’re not, it’s definitely worthwhile to look into video consult software and e-health tools. At the moment, many great video consult software providers are offering their software for free during this crisis. This would allow you to minimise unnecessary in-person contact. Make sure to choose software that is especially developed for this purpose and complies to privacy and security laws (for instance, check GDPR & HIPAA). Educate yourself or bring someone in with extensive knowledge on this subject to advise you.
When you’ve found software that is the right fit for you, add it to your workspace to always easily access it, without having to login again.
Do you have useful advice for healthcare organisations?
Please share them. Not just with us, but with other healthcare organisations as well. If we can support your organisation during the Corona Crisis, please contact us.