D'Arcy Gue

How Tracking Hospital IT Service Desk Trends Can Improve Hospital Performance

December 3, 2013

IT Service Desk 2 Minute Read

This is the fourth post in our “Power of Data Series” focused on improving the performance of your hospital Service Desk. 

Hospital IT Service Desks capture copious amounts of data, but often face a challenge when they need to demonstrate their performance and value to the business. This is an issue that we’ve seen a number of hospitals experiencing. It has been observed that many hospitals fail to see the value that is gained from data collection, trending, and identifying emerging problem areas.

The reality of a hospital setting is a stressful one. It is uncommon that clinicians and administrators have the time to explore and analyze the performance of the equipment and personnel that support them. Unfortunately, as the adage says — you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Hospitals need to collect data to analyze and develop IT service improvement plans to eliminate recurring incidents. Therefore, it falls to IT to align their measurement and reporting efforts with hospital goals and perform trending analysis based on those goals.

As the first point-of-contact, Service Desk receives all of the end-user IT issues and can identify important trends by reviewing these issues. This should be a priority for any Service Desk, especially one serving a hospital, where lives are on the line.

Trending is essential for identifying problems in the IT service delivery process. Using trending, a hospital IT department can proactively handle problem management andtrending avoid the occurrence of problems before they get to a larger scale and significantly impact the hospital staff and its patients.

Trending provides a number of benefits, such as:

  • Expose externalities that impact service performance
  • Reveal the root cause of problems
  • New perspectives from disparate data
  • Intelligence, beyond standard reporting
  • Service performance measurement
  • Service delivery improvement
  • Context for decision making

All of this would not be possible without capturing data by the Service Desk. Other areas of IT like Network and Clinical should also collect and trend data. Combining the data from these areas and performing trend analysis enables an immense improvement in the quality of IT service.

Another great benefit of trending data is that it makes it easier to monitor the effects of technical changes in the environment in a useful way. You can find out the extent of the impact on users and sites to enhance the change management process.

In a hospital environment, objectives and requirements are changing constantly, and IT is expected to assist in meeting those objectives. When performed and reviewed regularly, meaningful data collection and trending can greatly aid in improving the hospital’s overall performance. More importantly, the ability to identify and address problems caused by IT improves Service Desk performance and decreases the risk of delayed patient care.


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