LOMBARD, ILLINOIS - November 16, 2015
Advanced Technologies Group (ATG), the nation’s leading facility information consulting firm, recently held its semi-annual “Healthcare Advisory Group Meeting” at ATG’s headquarters in Lombard, Illinois.
Members of the Healthcare Advisory Group represent some of the largest and most influential healthcare organizations from around the country. The semi-annual meeting is a cornerstone of ATG’s ongoing commitment to collaborate closely with the healthcare industry nationwide.
During in-depth discussions with facilities management leaders at these major institutions, executives shared their experiences to identify emerging industry and regulatory trends. This dialogue offers ATG consultants the opportunity to shape solutions and technologies that align best to meet the healthcare industry’s ever-changing needs.
Direct conversations with leaders from prestigious healthcare organizations
At its most recent meeting, Healthcare Advisory Group members were in widespread agreement on the need to access more detailed metrics to understand how their facilities were performing – and be able to share that benchmark data with senior executives to demonstrate performance and justify budgets.
“Close collaboration has been essential to meeting our core mission over the last 30 years,” according to ATG President Mike Hakbaz. “That’s why we established the Healthcare Advisory Group.”
“We work with facilities managers from most of the nation’s prestigious healthcare organizations. These direct conversations give us deep operational insights into their challenges, which helps us create or modify our solutions for the entire healthcare industry,” he added.
This latest meeting included representatives from well-known hospitals and healthcare campuses, such as Presence Health, LifeBridge Health, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Memorial Hermann, Northwestern Memorial Hospital and more.
“They represent some of the most progressive and well-known hospitals from around the country – with millions of square footage under management,” according to Ted Pappas, ATG Vice President, Facility Services Division. “We all learn from each other in frank discussions to assure that we can meet both ongoing and future facilities management needs for the industry.”
New concerns: Diverging technologies, Building Information Modeling, infection control, and more
Group members brought up several issues that have rapidly become important to more effectively reducing compliance risk and optimizing resources. These included:
- The use of new technologies such as apps on tablets, voice recognition, and improved reporting tools
- How to best extend the role of BIM (Building Information Modeling) from a design and construction management tool to a more effective facilities management solution
- Improved solutions for monitoring and auditing infection control
Adding more value to facilities management data
Many clients expressed the need to make better use of their facilities data.
For example, Chet Howard, Director of Maintenance at Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock – one of the largest pediatric hospitals in the nation with a campus that spans 36 city blocks – explained the obstacles he faces when data is fragmented across large organizations.
“The data is available, but one of my challenges is integrating all of my data – whether from GIS, CMMS, or ATG – so I can use the information to make more informed decisions,” Howard pointed out, noting that gaining more value from data is rapidly becoming more essential to justify investments in new technologies.
“We’re being pushed to be more efficient,” he said. “The only way we can demonstrate that we are an asset and not a liability in the C-suite is having the data to do that. Right now I’m at about $50,000 a month in savings. A month. You take those kinds of numbers upstairs and show them what you’re doing and they pay attention. But you’ve got to have the data.”
A commitment to listening: “What do you need?”
ATG’s Healthcare Advisory Group helps the company rapidly improve solutions based on direct client feedback and demonstrates a commitment to close collaboration.
Odell Hall, Director of Facilities at LifeBridge Health in Baltimore – an organization of five medical centers with more than 1,300 beds – explained that he appreciated how his relationship with ATG is “more than just a client” and the value of “always asking what do you need? What can we do differently? What can we do better? What’s working?”
And as Chet Howard noted, “It’s a huge value for me to be able to call and say ‘I need a solution to this issue’ – and I’ve got someone on the other end of the phone who says ‘Okay, let me take this to some other people and figure it out.’ ”
The next ATG Healthcare Advisory Group meeting will be held in Chicago in April, 2016.