Article: Need the Right People and Mindset to Position for Growth


Need the Right People and Mindset to Position for Growth

Dr. K. Prabakar, Chief Learning Officer, Apollo Hospitals Group

Organisation Development comes in two ways - Excellence and Engagement through appropriate interventions


What would be the one critical people-related function that defines success in this industry?
Hospitals are an integral part of the Healthcare sector and have a very complex organizational dynamic. It is complex because it is people dominant and there is a direct interface between the patient and the service provider. A typical tertiary care hospital has five segments of services namely medical, nursing, allied health professionals, support & administrative services. It is important that there is an excellent cohesion among the services to enable quality service delivery to the patient.

The most important people function, I would say, is Organization Development. In this business, it is imperative to have the right people in place with the right mindset so that you can position yourself for high growth. Organization Development comes in two ways - Excellence and Engagement through appropriate interventions. Excellence is both in terms of process excellence and in terms of service excellence, with the patient in mind at all times.

In an industry where workforce planning plays such an important role, can you share your best practices with our readers on how does Manpower Planning aligns to business performance?
Human Resource Planning is very important in the healthcare industry as it has a significant impact on the deployment of required resources and also has a bearing on the HR cost. For a hospital to be efficient and effective, we have to work on appropriate ratios as per the type of care it delivers. There are certain key indicators namely Bed to manpower (Operable beds and on occupancy), HR cost to revenue, Cost per employee, Employee value add and Attrition rate which helps HR heads of the hospitals to have a control on numbers and costs. Normally, a matured tertiary care hospital can work on a ratio of 1:4.5 bed to manpower with HR cost varying between 18-22% of turnover depending on the location of the hospital.

Process compliance and Risk Management is key for the success of the organization, how is training involved in maintaining these processes? How do you track effectiveness of training initiatives?
Process compliance and risk management is an integral part of the process and service excellence that we talked about. In terms of how is training supporting these initiatives, it starts from the induction process where every single employee who joins our organization will be taken through the Apollo Starter Kit, an interactive tool which will helps in orienting the new Apollo family member in organization values, systems and processes. Besides technical and functional training, there is also a focus on behavioural training supplemented with specific initiatives to help employees deal and manage stress.

Ensuring customer satisfaction in a business with such critical and numerous customer touch points must be a challenging task. How do you align all processes -medical and otherwise - to the customer’s needs?
The task of aligning all process owners to quality patient care delivery has been achieved by bringing in accountability at all levels. The Apollo performance monitor (Unit Balanced Score card) brings out the monthly performance report of the units based on the concept of five pillars namely Clinical Excellence, Operational Excellence, People Management, Quality and Financial Management. All employees are aligned to this process through their individual goals and their performance is linked to their compensation and career progression.

For us the, patient is central. In our mantra to provide ‘tender loving care’, all touch points are important and we need to ensure that all processes, initiatives, interventions are aligned to create that positive patient experience in the hope of which a patient comes to Apollo.

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Topics: C-Suite, Strategic HR

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