Tactful adaptation and adjustment in unknown terrain is a defining characteristic of all great health care CIOs, but even the most gifted tech leaders in this sector have been challenged by the rapidly evolving environment in which they operate today. As hospitals, private practices and research organizations all face towering compliance regulations, cybercriminal attacks and a host of new operational and financial obstacles, the CIO may indeed be the hardest working executive in the health care boardroom.
As the digital age plows forward, these CIOs must continue to tackle the challenges that face their organizations and the field at large. CIO Magazine recently pointed out a handful of areas in which tech leaders are gearing up for the changes to come, and here are three of the most pivotal ways in which health care CIOs must evolve to stay ahead of the curve:
Set Sights on the Cloud
Nearly every health care organization has leveraged cloud applications in some capacity, but forward-thinking sector leaders recognize that the future of IT lies in this unique architectural approach. The source pointed out that aside from being a cloud evangelist and advocate in the boardroom, CIOs will have to get their hands dirty in the planning, integration and support processes that define cloud demands.
Become a Team Player
While each organization has its own unique agendas and objectives, exceptional health care CIOs never overlook the importance of IT consulting when planning, procuring and deploying next-gen tech solutions in their operations. As trends such as DevOps and agile development become mainstream, CIOs must remain in close collaboration with their vendors and service providers to ensure they never fall behind the times or stall out in their innovative endeavors. For some leaders, this change will require a shift in attitude, CIO Magazine noted.
"You have to have more of a systems integration mindset for [cloud] architecture roles," Paula Tolliver, CIO and corporate vice president of business services at Dow Chemical, told the source. "You're going to be piecing together a cloud environment from multiple service providers in infrastructure and applications."
Never Stop Learning
The cloud may offer automation and other features that allow for a more passive approach to IT management, but this doesn't mean health care CIOs can kick back and relax. CIO Magazine urged leaders to adopt a proactive mindset toward tech development and educate themselves to become maximally valuable to their organizations.