By AHRA Staff
November 2011–Every month, a hypothetical management situation is posted. You are encouraged to share your thoughts (in the comment box below) on how you would address the issue. Here is this month’s question:
Most of your staff have smart phones and can access the Internet via their phones. Some staff members have requested Internet access on their work computer. Should this be allowed if it’s not already?
Be sure to check out others’ responses and join the discussion.
I allow and advocate for internet access for staff. I think the newer generations are very much tied to a lifestyle of quick research via the web, etc. We use many applications that are ASP models and thus, internet access is a requirement.
The caveat for this is that all social networking sites would be blocked and by user log-in, the sites one enters would be tracked and audited to make sure that these are job related.
A side note – I would discourage and actually have policies that prohibit the use of personal communication devices while at work. Facebooking, texting while at work is not appropriate and not tolerated.
We have internet access for our staff on all computers. Only “approved” sites (ACR, CT is Us, ARRT, state Rad license site, CE websites, etc.) are open to employees. We have strict policies that are enforced regarding appropriate usage of hospital owned computers.
We also have strict policies regarding personal electronic devices (i.e. cell phones, ipods, laptops). These devices are NEVER to be used in patient care areas and are ONLY to be used in non-patient care areas during breaks or lunch time.
We have internet access on our computers for our staff but shopping sites, social media and other “inappropriate sites” are locked out. If a staff member has a legitimate reason to access a site then they can request access through the IS department and approved by the department director. We have wireless access throughout the hospital so during down time staff can access the internet with their smart phones (outside of patient areas). On evenings,nights and weekends, some staff bring in their own laptops to use in non-patient areas and access the internet using the wireless network. We have not had any issues with work not getting done in a timely manner.
With regard to texting, I actually encourage staff to text me rather than page me, especially if I am in a meeting. It is more convenient and less obtrusive to reply to a text message while in ta meeting than to get up and make a telephone call.
David and I must work at the same place. I communicate with my Lead Techs via texting more than by email, they are usually not at a place where they could get to their email anyway.
We do not have any texting, social networking, etc policies in our organization. We have an organizational Facebook page, twitter account, etc. that we encourage our staff to join so it would be hypocritical of us to keep staff from accessing it. Our CEO has a concept to leverage technology and manage behaviors. When we have reviewed this at department meetings our staff are understanding and I think they do a great job of managing this. If I do have to speak to them about it, they take ownership and I see behavior changes.