Knowledge & Information will comprise five core functions, around which the services, responsibilities, people and external relationships will be organised. These are:
- Business Delivery
- Enterprise Architecture
- Change & Portfolio Management
- Service Management
- Infrastructure & Technology
The purpose and core responsibilities of these functions are described at a high level below.
The primary objective for the Business Delivery function is to create a single point of accountability representing Knowledge & Information and technology service delivery - both change projects and business-as-usual run services - in the health service, and to drive technology enablement, adoption and innovation to achieve better patient outcomes. To achieve this effectively, Assistant National Directors will be assigned to specific areas of the health service, who then work with clinicians to shape, plan and deliver the end-to-end portfolio of Knowledge & Information services to that area.
The purpose of this function is to underpin the work of the Technical Design Authority and to ensure the continued alignment of the technology architecture and capabilities across the whole service and across all settings with the strategic direction. This function will work to promote cross-capability integration, re-usability, and standardisation and work closely with the Business Delivery to ensure that new demand is always considered in the broader context. Responsibilities for the function include defining robust and clear standards and policies for technology implementation and service delivery; owning the design of all architectural layers including business process, information, application and technical; defining and quality assuring compliance with policies relating to information security and risk; and owning the overall sourcing strategy.
Change & Portfolio Management
This function will comprise three main components – Portfolio Planning & Management, Programme Management Office and Business Change Enablement. The purpose of the function is to continually balance the future delivery needs with the available human and financial resources; oversee the successful delivery of the whole change portfolio and provide project management expertise, tracking and monitoring and quality assurance to enable this; and develop and deploy business change capabilities to support successful embedding of change including identifying and planning any business process impacts and any required communications and training.
Service Management is responsible for the delivery of all operational services in line with ITIL service management principles. This means managing service delivery in a business focused, standardised, consistent way, which allows effective planning and management of current and future capacity, service availability, IT security and service continuity across all components of the service (people, process and technology). Service Management will be characterised by:
- Alignment to recognised health service functions
- Clear accountabilities for service levels, underpinned by strong service integration
- Customer service focus, with a single point of contact for service consumers
- Standardised processes and continuous improvement
- Effective use of 3rd party suppliers as an extension of the in-house Knowledge & Information capability
- Controlled transition of changes and new developments into operational service
Infrastructure & Technology
This function is responsible for the provisioning and management of all enabling infrastructure for users and services:
- Networks & Telecoms that provide voice and data connectivity across the HSE’s extensive footprint
- Servers and Storage (including leveraging cloud technologies as appropriate)
- End user computing (including desktops, laptops, mobile devices, printing & productivity software)
A national data centre has been created from which a growing infrastructure base is being delivered. Key ongoing priorities for the infrastructure function include:
- Delivering high availability infrastructure that reflects the criticality of the clinical applications it underpins
- Managing technical security to mitigate any risks to service or information security
- Utilising, monitoring and automating technologies to deliver high levels of service
- Delivering service in line with HSE service integration approach and ITIL service management principles
- Supporting the successful delivery of change projects
Knowledge & Information Managers throughout the HSE
In addition to the functions described in the operating model, the management of technology for healthcare is in place through the HSE in many different ways. Some hospitals employ resources directly to support solutions deployed while other hospitals are reliant on HSE resources to operationally deliver systems and/or to strategically manage them. The new operating model will allow the levels of support and access to expertise to be addressed.
The first action will be to put in place a resource at the hospital group level that will manage hospital group level strategy, deploying localised versions of the national strategy into the groups and facilitating agile adoption of solutions and where appropriate manage the implementation of nationally standardised solution sets.
Additionally the newly formed service management function will ensure that the levels of support across the healthcare system are balanced and appropriate to each organisation that requires support.