If your healthcare organization wants to stay financially healthy over the next decade or two, you will need to outsource anything that isn’t a “core business function” of your hospital. Our definition of core business functions are those functions that cannot be done better, faster, or cheaper by others. Here is a short list of some functions for you to consider for outsourcing:
|Anesthesia Services||Biomed Services||Patient Call Centers|
|ED Management||Data Security||Facility Maintenance|
|Food Service||Grounds Care||Hospitalist Care|
|Linen, Laundry||Marketing||OR Management|
|Patient Transport||Parking||Patient Scheduling|
|Security||Wound Care||Mail/Messenger Service|
(*) Source: Healthcare Financial Management
The point of this short list is to get you thinking about areas of your hospital that can be outsourced since it will get harder and harder for your hospital to find savings if you don’t consider this universally accepted cost management technique.
Traditionally, hospitals have outsourced because they had high turnover in a department, couldn’t find quality candidates, legal and contractual situations, etc. Now, Baylor Health Care’s CFO, Fred Savelsburgh, says, “Outsourcing can be an option for consistency, best practices, and standardization of processes, training and hiring, staff performance criteria, tools, predictability, and career advancement opportunities for its employees.”
To this point, we are seeing more and more supply chain managers outsourcing their warehousing function, which used to be considered an in-house function. However, based on our criteria for outsourcing (i.e., better, faster, and cheaper) it is a perfect fit.
Another area supply chain managers should think about outsourcing is their supply chain analytics department, especially since the cost of building an in-house capability can be very expensive and then retaining talented analysts could be a real challenge.
The last thing for you to remember about outsourcing in the 21st century is that outsourcing today isn’t about hiring the lowest cost contractor, but developing a true partnership with your service provider who becomes part of your hospital family. You know you have an exact fit when you forget that their personnel are not your hospital’s employees.