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Clean bill of health: How Zulekha Hospital achieved ISO 20,000 certification

Tom Paye | May 15, 2013
A normal business may see much sense in improving the service management of its IT department. If the improvements increase IT's efficiency, reduce costs and minimise downtime, ROI is easily measured.

"We got the basic idea of what ITIL is and then what kind of requirements there are for ITIL," says Bohari. "Then we started with a tool from ManageEngine for a service desk to start the documentation, logging the calls into the service desk and then started about the incident management, problem management and change management."

Following the ITIL guidelines and implementing a ManageEngine tool was certainly a good start for the department. As time went on, forms had to be filled out for IT requests, and it was documented whenever an IT request was completed. Suddenly, the IT department had evidence to show the management that it was indispensable. Of course, the changes met with some resistance, but Bohari sent orders straight from the top that these processes had to be followed.

"It was more work for the IT department initially, I think," Bohari says. "But now this is our practice. Now, it's a daily routine."

That said, even by implementing the ITIL practices, Bohari was still a way off of achieving the ISO 20,000 certification. The auditors, who come from a German body, are famous for their fastidiousness, and they browse meticulously through at least six months of records to ensure that the processes really are being followed to the highest standards.

This is why, during the implementation phase, Bohari saw fit to call on some consultants from Elitser Technologies, which specialises in helping IT departments implement the changes necessary for the ISO 20,000, among other things.

"You can do it by yourself — but somebody should be there to find your gaps, or what you're doing incorrectly," says Bohari. "This is the best way to do things. At some point of time, you really require some consultants who can come and really help you a lot. So Elitser helped us very nicely, and with this help, we achieved the certification."

Having just been certified for the 2011-standard ISO 20,000, the IT department works very differently to the way it did before 2009. For example, tasks such as fixing broken printers or laptops are now prioritised depending on who they come from, and service-level agreements with all departments stipulate how long it can take for a particular task to be completed. What's more, everything is documented, so insight can be gleaned out of the information that results.

No doubt the ISO 20,000 certification has helped the IT department in doing its job, but it has also helped, most importantly, in terms of providing better patient care and customer service, says Bohari: "Now what is happening is you come in, and all records are available on the doctor's desktop, on the hospital management software. He has to just log in and see all your history, and what has been done. He won't even have to ask what has happened with you because everything is available with him."

 

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