Why strategic technology management is key for healthcare operations

By Philips ∙ dec. 31, 2023 ∙ 3 min read


Hospital operations

For every healthcare institution, technology is a significant investment and an essential component in quality healthcare delivery. It has become a key differentiating factor in improving patient care and in establishing a competitive advantage. Yet successful management of a broad installed base of hardware and software is challenging. Without a thoughtful, proactive plan, a break/fix/replace routine becomes unavoidable, costly and overwhelming.

This article focuses on:

  • A major challenge in healthcare is how to move from cost-increasing to cost-reducing technology.
  • There is an opportunity for medtech companies to work closely with healthcare providers to deliver not only equipment, but also innovative services, often enabled with software, that meet specific needs.
  • If the change management process isn’t managed properly, the technology management won’t be successful no matter how advanced the technology is.

Doctor having team meeting

Identifying the current technology cost burden

According to a Becker’s Hospital CFO Report, “Hospitals spend $93 billion per year on medical equipment lifecycle costs – all the activities related to the purchase, support and disposal of medical equipment and technology. Due to a lack of accurate information, internal resources, bandwidth and specialized expertise, even the most diligent hospitals are missing savings of as much as 12-16% of their entire medical equipment lifecycle costs - or $12,000 per bed per year.''1

According to a survey of 157 hospital leaders and service line leaders in the United States and Europe by management consultancy, McKinsey & Co, creating ”beyond the product” partnerships between providers and medtech players offers an answer.

“Sharing risk and reward is the new essential,” says Stephanie Holden, Philips Managed Technology Services Director, Solutions UK&I. “The shift in focus has to be from buying the ‘Rolls Royce’ to putting the right technology investments in the right areas at the right time for the right reasons.”

“The shift in focus has to be from buying the ‘Rolls Royce’ to putting the right technology investments in the right areas at the right time for the right reasons.”

Stephanie Holden

Philips Managed Technology Services Director, Solutions UK&I

How to create an effective strategic technology management partnership

Surgical team performing pain treatment with Zenition II mobile C-arm

Holden offers these top tips on what to consider when embarking on a strategic technology management partnership:

Purpose over project: Identify a partner whose vision, values and operational strategy align with yours.

Positive governance drives success from the get-go: Consider building an innovative governance framework from the start.

Prioritize the plan: Create a future-thinking strategic technology plan.

  • Start broad to build a holistic overview.
  • Build patience into the planning.
  • Adopt a multidisciplinary team approach to construct a comprehensive plan.
  • Build tangible value into the plan.
  • Build in scope for the plan to encompass an opportunity for change management.
  • Ensure that integrated information management is central.
  • Define output-based key performance indicators (KPIs) and complement with objectives and key results (OKRs).

Technology is just part of the process: Appreciate that success and efficiency gains are ultimately dependent on change management, not technology.

Learn from doing: Practice makes partnership.

Examples of success

Over the years, Philips has enabled measurable, sustainable technology service improvement for dozens of clients, including County Durham & Darlington NHS Foundation Trust and Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust.


Why strategic technology management is emerging as a key operational discipline in healthcare

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[1] Robson, Peter, CEO Miga Solutions, A new way of thinking about medical equipment costs, Becker’s Healthcare, Hospital CFO Report, 11/13/2016, https://www.beckershospitalreview.com/finance/a-new-way-of-thinking-about-medical-equipment-costs.html, accessed on 02/08/2020.

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