In this weekly feature, the editors of SpringBoard highlight one career in the health care professions–including a basic description, educational requirements, core competencies/key skills needed, and related web sites and professional organizations where you can find more information!
The Chief Learning Officer (CLO) is a new position in hospitals. The goal of the CLO is to help facilitate and accelerate learning throughout the organization. The CLO directs the organization’s education, training, and development programs to empower staff and ensure their maximum effectiveness and contribution to meet organizational goals.
As part of the senior leadership team, the CLO will:
- Partner with organizational leaders to identify needs for training and organizational development, develop and implement new training as needed
- Advise senior leadership regarding initiatives and activities that promote maximum staff effectiveness and create a positive impact on service quality
- Develop and evaluate employee development programs and ensure that programs do have a benefi cial impact on service delivery
- Plan, launch, monitor, and act on long-range learning initiatives that are aligned with the organization’s strategic goals
- Design and establish benchmarks that measure the impact and effectiveness of organizational development programs on the organization’s overall performance
- Forge relationships with internal and external stakeholders, including, but not limited to, universities/colleges, public schools, and government entities
EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE
Hospital-based CLOs require a master’s degree, doctoral degree preferred, in education, organizational development, human resources, or comparable fields of study and a minimum of 5 years of leadership experience, preferably in the areas of human resources management, academic and/or professional development, or comparable areas.
CORE COMPETENCIES AND SKILLS
- Outstanding interpersonal skills including the ability to effectively communicate with persons throughout the organization, including clinicians
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
- Significant experience in data-processing methods and procedures, and computer software systems
- Knowledge in systems design and development processes, including requirements analysis, feasibility studies, software design, programming, pilot testing, installation, evaluation, and operational management
- Oversee the management and coordination of all fiscal reporting activities for the hospital
- Familiarity with the design, management, and operation of health IT systems
- Proven ability to link and apply complex technologies to business strategies
- Experience in negotiating contracts with vendors, contractors, and others
- Ability to analyze and resolve complex issues, both logical and interpersonal
Most hospital-based CIOs earn salaries in the range of $80,000 to $300,000 per year. However, this figure varies depending on a number of variables, including the size of the hospital and the region of the country in which the hospital is located. CIOs of smaller hospitals in more rural areas tend to earn less than their counterparts at large, urban hospitals.
The overall outlook for hospital CIO jobs is expected to increase over the coming years. The reason for the increase is due to the need for hospitals to make health technology an increasing part of clinical and administrative operations. There remain a number of federal financial and regulatory incentives to vigorously move into health IT. CIO is a relatively new occupation and it is difficult to assess turnover, but anecdotal reports indicate that CIOs turnover at a brisk pace to accept roles with increasing salary and responsibility.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
- Visit local universities offering the MHA degree or equivalent particularly those who offer concentrations in health IT (www.aupha.org)
- Health Information Management System Society (www.himss.org)
- Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (http://www.bls.gov/oco/cg/cgs035.htm)