Isala administrators set ambitious goals

Isala, a large clinical hospital in the Netherlands, wanted to significantly and structurally improve their support services. “If you want to be the best hospital, you need to have the best administrative staff.” That was the aim of the commissioning organization.

  • Healthcare providers
  • Sustainable change

Their goal was ambitious: they wanted to improve costs by about 20 to 30%. However, we proposed that besides reducing costs, they should also focus on boosting quality. So we set the bar even higher: 20-30% lower costs, plus 20-30% quality improvement.

Team in the lead

What made this project unique was the way we involved hospital employees in the improvements. During a role-playing workshop, the administrative management identified and experienced the need for improvement themselves – an essential motivator and starting point for change. The team also took the lead in writing the improvement and business plans. We supported their efforts with insights and templates. We also made benchmarks for the costs (what’s the potential?) and quality (how do the most important customers rate their services?) and described the key global trends related to their services. After that, we aligned the plan with the potential and ambitions, and make a concrete interpretation to put it into practice.

Proud of their own organization

Gupta’s job was to continuously challenge and inspire the management team. It’s important, because support services play an essential role in the healthcare process – they form the invisible ‘backbone’ of the hospital. Using our critical yet inspiring perspective, we coached the management team on how to become the best possible administrators. And with their pride and expanded expertise, it was not only possible to achieve significant cost savings, but also major quality improvements.

Venema R J

The experience of Roel Venema

CFO Isala

What I remember most about this project: the results.”

"Gupta realizes that you need to use the core issues to motivate people to get started. During this project, they positioned themselves as a critical coach to drive the actual implementation of their plans and achieve good results. Because that’s what I remember most about this project: the results. Just imagine: Achieving a reduction of fifty to sixty full-time employees in one department is one thing, but achieving it by letting the managers themselves come up with a plan, make it concrete and then execute it is a another matter entirely. Gupta’s approach – using the issues to let the managers see for themselves that something needed to change and then come up with their own solutions – was a defining factor in the success of this project."

Img Anshu Gupta

Anshu Gupta’s experience

The combination of clarifying data and inspiring people was what made this project so fun.”

"With an ambitious project like this one, expectations are always high. But in addition to stress, it also comes with plenty of inspiration. Because to be able to achieve something like this, you have to use the issues at hand to inspire the management team to achieve the ambitious goals they’ve set. Gupta's roll was to carefully assess the data from the benchmarks, clearly explain the results and answer the critical, but legitimate questions from the management. Besides our job was to inspire the management team of Isala to believe their own ambitious goals. Finally, insights can only help you move further if they actually ‘sink in’. The combination of clarifying data and inspiring people was what made this project so fun. For me, the greatest sense of satisfaction comes from the client’s team achieving their own ambitious goals. And in this case, that’s exactly what happened!"

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