If you’re a hospital administrator, manager, supervisor, or have ever held a job, anywhere, in any industry, you have likely heard of this term. Cross-training. It is the operational process of teaching your employees the knowledge and skills of another position in the organization to increase effectiveness.
When it comes to your Clinical Engineering Team cross training should be top of mind.
Why? Let’s discuss the top three reasons.
#1. EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT
Offering your clinical engineering team the opportunity to learn new skills is a form of recognition. This recognition shows that your organization is invested in your employees and genuinely cares about their professional development. Most BMETs appreciate the opportunity to learn new skills that can produce the possibility of changing their day-to-day routine. Studies have indicated that professional growth and development opportunities directly links to overall employee engagement and performance improvement, which in turn is directly linked to reduced turnover. This operational process can become one of the easiest “win-win” scenarios for your department.
#2. EFFICIENCY AND PRODUCTIVITY IMPROVEMENTS
Cross training your clinical engineering team increases the number of personnel that can complete work orders and service requests. Rather than creating a backlog for a single employee, you can effectively spread the workload across the team. Thereby mitigating any risk associated with disruptions from vacation, illness, turnover, etc. and providing grace in transitional periods. Additionally, when one of your BMETs participates in training other team members, they are forced to look at the process in which they are completing work. It offers the opportunity to explore process improvements for efficiency. Overall output from your team will improve.
#3. REDUCING COSTS
When you engage and support your current staff to cross train each other, especially with specialty equipment you are reducing costs. One of the largest costs you will reduce is recruiting. If you need to hire a new person, even in a temporary capacity, to fulfill the specialty needs of your department you are playing a game you won’t win. Rather than going through the time and expenses of recruiting and onboarding new employees, cross train your current talent. Additionally, by keeping your staffing needs strategic, you will minimize the overhead expenses of your department. Strategic hires are not done in a reactive state and are therefore reducing the spend for your staffing needs.
As you can see, cross training truly is a well-rounded benefit for your clinical engineering team. This is an industry where babies and heart attacks can’t wait on medical equipment repairs. Cross training is one way to ensure that your team, regardless of size, can handle any service request when it comes in, properly.
Do you have an example of how cross training has improved or helped your clinical engineering team? Share it with us in the comments. We would love to hear from you!