Leaders across most industries can agree that digitizing processes and procedures provides a multitude of benefits to facilities. However, digitizing all elements of a program, especially if not done correctly, can be costly to facilities. During a time where every dollar spent needs to be justified, facility leaders may wonder: “the next step of my program is to digitize, but I want to ensure I use my resources wisely. So, where should I begin?”

The key to successfully digitizing elements of a program is to establish strong foundational minimums. Foundational minimums are the minimum data state (MDS) needed to make confident decisions at a given point in time and can be used to create a strong foundation for digital transformation.

Digital transformation is the acceleration of existing processes, resulting in faster data collection, analysis, and decision making. For more information on digital transformation and its three elements, read our blog Reduce Cost with Digitization: Addressing the Buzz.

Where Do I Begin?

Facilities should begin their digital transformation by determining the current state of their program:

  • Do I understand my program’s baseline performance?
  • Is my baseline performance communicated and understood by my entire organization?
  • Has my team defined what excellence, success, and failure look like for my organization?
  • Are my success criteria clearly understood by my entire organization?

Once the current state of the program is determined, facilities need to baseline the processes they’re wanting to digitize. To baseline the processes, facilities need to compare the desired and actual outcomes of their processes. Are the current outcomes similar to their desired results? Are there any areas for improvement?

Determine Foundational Minimums

Next, facilities need to determine the foundational minimums for their program to build from. Facilities can establish foundational minimums by identifying tasks that do not contribute to their MDS and mapping their MDS to the three elements of digital transformation: human behavior, structure, and tools. Identifying the desired results for the program will help facilities identify the tasks and behaviors that do not contribute to MDS.

For example, a facility beginning the digital transformation process may identify that the desired end-state of their program would be comprised of the following digital transformation elements:

  • Human behavior: Facility employees are more focused on quality, competent, and productive
  • Structure: The program structure in place will assure quality and productivity
  • Tools: There will be tools and systems of records in place for competency management, quality assurance, collection of data, and analysis of data

After evaluating the current state of their program, the facility may determine that they need to make some improvements before achieving their ideal results. To begin closing the gap between current and desired state, facilities may conduct further analysis:

  • Human behavior: What drivers can help the employees’ behavior change? Are there specific training sessions, procedures, or key performance indicators (KPIs) that can help drive change?
  • Structure: Are there any workflows or KPIs that can help employees become more efficient?
  • Tools: What tools are required for the employees to successfully change? What tools are needed to ensure the human behavior and structure elements of digital transformation positively change? Certifications, sampling results, and KPIs are examples of tools that can positively impact human behavior and structure.

All three elements of digital transformation are crucial to successful digitization and establishment of foundational minimums. Without strong tools, human behavior, and structure in place, facilities will struggle to successfully digitize their programs.

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