The digital transformation has impacted all aspects of everyday lives. So much so that many of the benefits of it are now taken for granted, especially in the workspace. And yet in some workplaces there is still some resistance to using technology to enhance services and drive efficiency. Digital transformation in adult social care has been initially slow, but it’s easy to understand why this is the case. Hands-on roles tend not to embrace technology in the same way as other job sectors. Although quite why this is the case is not so easy to explain. Because those sectors often adopt some technological advances while fearing others.
It’s not uncommon, for example, for a care worker to check their work schedule on their mobile device, use sat nav to find the address of a new client and update colleagues using WhatsApp. But, suggest the use of digital data storage and you can often find carers are reluctant to embrace that type of technology in the same way.
This is because most of us are now comfortable using our device for a variety of purposes for which the benefits are immediately obvious. The benefits of digital data input, while important to an organisation, are not always so obvious to staff in the field. Indeed, they frequently see any introduction of tech in this regard as just another task for them to complete. But any organisation that decides complying with data protection laws is not a priority is walking a very fine line.
Digitally stored data is more easily accessible, has less chance of being damaged or tampered with, and can be displayed in a number of different ways according to your requirements. Digital care records, for example, can be viewed from anywhere and shared as required without running the risk of physical paper being mislaid or lost.
Aside from the benefits that digitalisation can bring to productivity, it is also worth considering how it aids business leaders in creating their strategic vision. How much more beneficial is this data when managers and business leaders can access it quickly and easily? And how much more valuable could limited funds be if they are spent on providing care services rather than laborious paper-based admin tasks?
Organisational digitalisation does require upskilling and retraining of team members, of course. There is no point in trying to pretend otherwise. But when digital learning is integrated into existing working practices, it has a significant impact across any organisation.
But the benefits of digitalising social care go beyond the care company. A service provider that embraces the digital transformation can also offer an enhanced level of service to its end users. When patients are able to communicate with the care company in their own time and from the comfort of their armchair, they are more empowered and able to control aspects of their life that may have previously been out of their reach.
And yet, as of June 2021, only 40% of UK care companies were using digital care records. This means 60% are unable to access vital patient information quickly and easily when they need it.
There is no doubt that digitalisation is the future of the UK adult care sector. And the time to get onboard is now. There is currently a global acceptance that remote communication and hybrid working models are the new normal. One of the biggest challenges to organisations looking to make significant changes to the way they operate is getting their teams aligned with the vision and direction of the company. 2023 is a time to strike while the iron’s hot and ride the post-Covid wave of organisational digitalisation.
In many cases, the fear team members have is that digitisation will make their working life more complicated. These are valid concerns, but ones that can be overcome with good quality training and coaching that allays those fears while upskilling individuals and bringing them in line with company goals.
The key to digitalising the UK care sector, therefore, is pre-empting the resistance of team members who are fearful of change, and creating a bespoke training package that gives both the skills and confidence to be a part of the future of their chosen industry.
At Richmond we specialise in tailored hybrid training packages that meet the needs of our clients. We are experienced in the UK care sector and our Skills Coaches are experts in addressing the pain points of an organisation. We create hybrid training schemes using the cutting-edge Bud apprenticeship learning management software that is educational, engaging and designed to sync with all the other commitments that form part of the working day.
To discuss the best ways to upskill your organisation, get in touch today.