South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) CIO Stephen Docherty believes facilitating collaboration between clinicians in the healthcare environment and with social care practitioners across local government is one of the biggest opportunities and challenges for CIOs working in the NHS.
Speaking to CIO UK contributor Scott Carey at the 2017 CIO 100 celebration reception at The Waldorf Hotel in London, Docherty said SLaM was the first NHS Trust in the country to move everyone in the organisation fully to an Office 365 environment.
"The difficulty we face - and this is the challenge of the next couple of quarters - is getting people out there to take it to the people, help them to use the tools, change the email culture and start to use the collaboration tools," Docherty said.
While fostering a culture of internal collaboration, Docherty also saw a big opportunity in NHS organisations collaborating across regions, and how they work with local authorities.
"I'm the chair of the London CIO Council for health and recently we've started to hook up with the CIO Council of the local authorities to work together, but also we have a vision," Docherty said. "I'm going to push for a connected London so health and social care are truly connected.
"That's a huge opportunity to connect up, share the information and have a rich source of data that can help you be a bit more proactive and preventative to understand where the problems are."
Docherty, who has experience working in the gaming sector with positions at Electronic Arts and Atari, also discussed how much digitisation had changed the CIO role and what technology executives could learn by seeking inspiration from outside of their sector.
"The CIO role has evolved over the last couple of years because a lot of different sectors are starting to wake up to understand that you have to change your business model," he said. "Now what you've got is a race to digitisation and what we've got to watch is that we don't go off and everyone does similar things and duplicates and overlaps or else we'll waste the money.
"I also believe that if you take different principles and different experiences and perspectives of different industries and apply them to other industries and within the NHS then you get a rich source of experience that you can apply."