When you think of a hospital, you think of doctors and nurses running around the ER trying to revive people on ventilators, helping deliver babies, or dealing with the kid who just broke their leg playing soccer. While those doctors and nurses are heroes keeping everyone healthy and safe, there’s another area of hospital staff that often goes unnoticed. Hospital facilities managers are responsible for most of the non-medical care that goes on in and around the hospital. Whether it’s cleaning the bathrooms, ordering supplies, or getting staff paid, these individuals keep the whole facility running smoothly and efficiently.
If you work as a hospital facilities manager, you understand what a big undertaking that truly is. You want to help provide the absolute best care for all the patients and family members in the hospital. As administrators, you may not get as much one-on-one time with patients and medical equipment, but you do a great job maintaining the integrity of how everything is run. Efficiency and organization are your best friends. You need to be able to communicate and form great relationships with other staff members while solving problems and hiccups in real-time.
It’s a tricky job because, if you do it right, no one may even notice. Of course, if you mess up, like if people don’t get paid or the plumbing stops working, it can throw off the rhythm of the whole operation. You’re excellent at what you do, and you’re making a huge difference in the lives of everyone who walks through those hospital doors. Here are just a few extra tips and tricks to help your healthcare facility be the best it can be while administering excellent patient care.
Stay organized with tools and documents.
Hospital facilities managers have a great deal of responsibility. You’re usually overseeing a large department with many different aspects to the workflow. Staying organized is an absolute must in this line of work. With the help of hospital asset tracking software, you can keep track of every piece of equipment in your building. Everyone can work with this technology to request hospital equipment, or you can simply rent out what you need. By keeping administrators, nurses, and doctors all aware of what healthcare assets and key features are available to them, and when you’re keeping the whole team on the same page. This way, doctors can focus directly on patient care while you take care of your assets.
Medical information is usually extremely sensitive. Keeping documents, whether physical or digital, well organized shows your patients that you’re professional and careful to keep their information private. Going the extra mile is always appreciated. Whether it’s in asset management or simply organizing information so it is easy for patients to access, you’re making life just a little easier for your staff and for your patients.
Create a good relationship with your staff.
With so many people working in the same building, you need a point person with high visibility that can create a bridge between all areas. That’s usually the hospital facilities manager. You work with doctors and nurses, but also with the custodial staff, event planners, family members, spiritual leaders, HR, and many others. Treat everyone equally, and work to foster healthy working relationships with your whole staff. You want them to feel that they can come to you with any issues or ideas to help advance and improve the hospital. A good working relationship with everyone will also help make your job so much easier.
One of the best ways to create a good rapport with your staff is to make sure they’re paid on time. You may or may not have full access to the accounting software, but if you do, make sure there’s reliability in when and where checks are available. Utilize check writing software to help print checks and ensure direct deposits go through quickly and easily. People tend to get grumpy when they don’t get paid. Avoid this issue altogether by guaranteeing the best professional service for all of your staff.
Maintain hospital cleanliness.
One of the most visible aspects of your job is the actual facilities themselves. When people go to their healthcare providers, they expect a clean and pristine environment. Cleanliness and sterilization are some of the most important things for patients. When the hospital looks nice and put together, they feel safer and more secure with the quality of care they’re receiving. You can’t skimp in this area. Make sure the inside and outside of your hospital are always looking good and welcoming patients into a clean, well-kept environment.
This also means working hard to keep up with building maintenance. You’re responsible for problem-solving whenever anything goes wrong. Yes, if the toilet clogs on the third floor, it’s up to you to get a plumbing company there as soon as possible. Create a good working relationship between yourself and plumber bastrop or whoever they may be. A lot of times these plumbers will also specialize in heating and air conditioning as well. Only bring in the best of the best to make your hospital and surrounding healthcare organizations a great, comfortable place for your patients.
Communicate with your staff and patients well.
This point ties into a lot of what has already been said, but it may be the most important of all. As a hospital facilities manager, communication is one of the most important skills you need to possess. Get out from behind your computer, and spend a lot of time communicating with your team and the patients. This is the best way to guarantee you’re giving the patients and employees the best experience. All it takes is a quick walk down the hallway greeting staff on the floor or hopping into patient rooms for a brief conversation. It will also benefit you, patients, and employees to stay positive and uplifting. Don’t hold back with your compliments. Share words of encouragement with your staff to help foster a more positive, motivating work environment.
Monitor and control your budgeting.
While hospitals prioritize patient care, you’re still ultimately a business. This means you have to deal with numbers and budgeting issues. There are plenty of tips to help hospital facilities managers with budgeting alone. Remember to always look at the bigger picture. Know and understand the warranties behind the more heavy-duty equipment you’re investing in. Try to get free estimates on new software systems that may work more efficiently. Communicate with vendors to make sure you’re getting the best deal possible. Sometimes it may take creativity, but staying on track with your capital and spending will help keep the bank accounts even and thriving, which is of the utmost importance.
Keep everyone safe and healthy.
Hospitals are ultimately there to help people stay safe and healthy. As the facilities manager, it’s your job to give whatever additional features may be needed to reach this goal. This isn’t an area to make any cuts or skimp on patient care. Don’t worry about the budget here, but prioritize the patients. How can you make them the most comfortable, safe, and healthy? Ultimately, if you can achieve this goal, you’ll have succeeded as a hospital facilities manager.