I’ve been to the annual HIMSS Conference (Health Information Management System Society)about a half dozen times over the last 12 years. Primarily as a guest of one of my employers and usually “working” in a variety of different capacities from a Booth Greeter, to Demo Master, to Sales Pitcher. Over the years, the conference has grown into quite the spectacle where your lack of presence says more than your attendance. The Conference’s combination of Industry Education and Vendor Exhibition draws over 40,000 attendees and nearly 1,500 Exhibiting companies create a great audience.
Since starting TGR Management Consulting, I’d not been. As a small business, it’s hard to make that kind of spend when there’s no real return that can be associated with it. Even large companies struggle with the cost and lost work hours for an army of employees attending. But after some cajoling by peers that are similarly employed, I decided to make the investment and attended the conference. The purpose was to learn, to listen, to absorb what others were sharing.
There are many fascinating technologies that are finding compelling use cases in healthcare such as Blockchain, Cyber Security, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the space is already becoming crowded with applications and services to support those use cases. So, going into the conference I was curious as to whether healthcare was really ready to leverage these platforms in day-to-day patient care.
I sat in on a half dozen sessions listening to CIO’s, CTO’s, CSIO’s sharing their experiences with being on the front edge of technology adoption as well as a few other Exhibitor presentations. What was most impactful to me was the realism the Practitioners injected around the effort to bring technology to life within their organizations. We all know there are challenges and lessons learned to be had in any adoption. However, there was a candid acknowledgment of their organizations’ true ability to adapt and adopt technology in day-to-day operations. The topics and technologies varied but the understated, yet common, theme in each organization achieving their respective technology objectives was the process foundation the existed around it. That foundation had to exist first AND that foundation had to evolve alongside the automation in order to succeed.
It’s there, in that last sentence, where I found the derived value for my attendance at the HIMSS Conference. As solution providers, we sometimes get lost in the “Art of the Possible” without real recognition for the ever-present change that exists at all levels of an organization. As a Technology Delivery Consultant, I need to have a heightened awareness of the rate at which technological change can be consumed by a Client’s organization. The time and space needed to evolve the foundational processes to support the technology cannot just be assumed in the delivery schedule. It needs equal consideration and planning activities. Without it, technology fails faster.
Being reminded of that fact made attendance at the HIMSS conference advantageous for me and ultimately my Clients.