Community, NHS, Our Tech, Running a company

Making Big Changes with Small Steps – Culture and Innovation in the NHS

Our founder Tom spoke to tech podcast “Venturi’s Voice” about how DrDoctor is bringing about a cultural change in the NHS and how this paves the way for a technological shift in the organisation. They also discuss the current state of healthtech and Tom’s journey founding DrDoctor.

Below is a short extract from the show. In it, Tom uses a nautical analogy to explain the difficulties and solutions to bring about change in a large organisation.

To listen to the full episode, click here.

Andy: Inserting new technology into a company often requires a cultural change first. Often times the “sell” isn’t that the technology will work with the existing systems but it’s getting employee’s onboard with adopting a new piece of tech. What is your approach to instigating a cultural change in regard to technology?

Tom: I think overcoming that hurdle is a combination of lots of people doing lots of small things. Essentially what we’re trying to do is like changing the direction of a super-tanker – there’s not one single intervention that can do that. It comes down to lots and lots of people intervening in lots of different ways.

It’s everything from Tim Kellsey and Beverly Bright in the NHS pushing open source software to people like Keith McNeil and Juliet Barrett who are pushing the patient side of things from the centre. Also, the suppliers in the UK systems all saying we need to work together not against each other. What’s been really rewarding is realising that by working together with companies like System C and other smaller businesses we can create real change.

However, it does take lots of people doing lots of small interventions to achieve this. So often it feels like you’re being ineffective. You may come away from a meeting feeling that there hasn’t been much progress but it’s everybody having these meetings, frequently, over a number of years that eventually causes the direction of your super-tanker to change.