Katrien van Gerven, General Manager Heilig Hart Leuven
“Dichtbij beter” (Better nearby) is the slogan of the H. Hart regional hospital in Leuven. What’s the vision behind this? The hospital firmly believes in short lines of communication, tightly knit teams and a close relationship with the patient. For this purpose it’s essential that their internal processes run like a well-oiled machine. So Cegeka built an accessible internal Sharepoint-based portal that keeps all internal information up to date and makes it available centrally.
“Our nursing staff had already been using SharePoint for a few years to share documents and view procedures, but the system had reached its limits’, says Katrien Van Gerven, general manager of the hospital. ‘To improve employee engagement and, consequently, our services, we wanted to build a new structured platform that would be accessible for every employee and across all departments. It had to be both a means of communication and a knowledge base, where everyone would be able to manage and retrieve information and documents easily.”
The H. Hart hospital sought the advice of its trusted IT partner Cegeka, which boasted great references in the hospital world. A visit to the GZA hospital, where Cegeka had set up a similar information portal, immediately convinced them: Cegeka would be the right partner for this project. The Cegeka team seized the challenge together with the hospital’s internal IT team, the various heads of department and Marie De Raedt, who had been engaged by the hospital specifically for this project. ‘Marie had experience with organization-wide communication, looked at the project from a fresh perspective and was very enthusiastic’, says Katrien.
First, the project group developed a proof of concept. An analysis of the needs and expectations pointed out three major issues: the complex search process, the lack of hospital-wide information/communication, and a difficult flow for procedure approvals. The new platform therefore had to focus on cooperation and central information management. In addition, the project team also identified a number of nice-to-haves to promote cooperation between colleagues, such as a ‘who’s who’, hospital news and an overview of on-call services.
Inspired by these insights, Cegeka implemented a stable communication information platform and document management system based on SharePoint. The platform is growing rapidly and is used intensively. Marie: ‘It’s very intuitive and has a very simple navigation structure. This makes communicating with patients and other departments easier. The employees can immediately find the information they need: contacts, on-call services, opening hours and procedures (i.e. guidelines for how we work in our hospital). Plus, the information is always up to date. This helps us to ensure we provide the very best care.’
The approval flow for procedures, which was a major issue in the past, has now been centralized. Thanks to Nintex’s workflow engine, the hospital can draft and publish procedures much faster than before. Katrien: ‘It’s easy to create procedures now using templates. They’re also approved a lot faster: every employee who’s authorized to issue approvals will receive an overview on their personal home page of all procedures to be approved. This way, they can accept or reject the procedure in just a few clicks. When a procedure is finalized, employees can easily find it thanks to the integrated search mechanism with filter options.’
The new platform reduces email traffic in the hospital and saves employees a lot of time. In addition, the real-time information results in better service. ‘And our employees are much more involved in our operations’, Marie adds. ‘They’re aware of practical issues and share knowledge with each other. We also motivate them by posting photos and fun news about our staff.’
Katrien concludes: ‘It has become a great platform, thanks to Cegeka. They stuck to the budget and timing and shared their thoughts with us at every step of the process.’ Currently, Cegeka still offers online technical support to the H. Hart Leuven hospital. ‘Now and then we meet to see how we can further optimize our operations, so that we can continue to give our patients the very best care.’
"The new platform is very intuitive and has a very simple navigation structure. This makes communicating with patients and other departments easier.”