Frequently, I am asked for advice from those seeking to transition to a career in health IT. Based on my years of experience, I have a few tips to share. And I’ve compiled them into a two-part blog series for your review. You can read part one here on the HIMSS Blog; below is part two.
7) While hospitals and physician practices are hubs of lots of activity now, i.e. achieving and sustaining the meaningful use of health IT (ARRA funding), ICD-10 conversion, and health reform initiatives, opportunities abound in the vendor segment as well. HIMSS has over 500 corporate US-based members (and others globally) who serve the industry.
8) Be familiar with the language of healthcare. It is important to speak (as well as understand) the healthcare terminology. My earliest example: I had just started working in healthcare and learned that OS meant two things: not only operating system, but left eye.
That was an awakening for me!
9) Identify a mentor, whether individually or in a group. You truly get the inside scoop on what the industry is like with a mentor. HIMSS has several eMentoring lists: one for executives, one for nursing, and we’re adding two: one for emerging professionals and one for pharmacists. You can check out the conversation at our Career Services pages. It is chock full of great content, and we continually add more.
10) Find job openings through the HIMSS JobMine, our online job board. This will also give you a sense of what’s available and where.
11) Regularly read our HIMSS sister publication (independent journalism views) Healthcare IT News, available online or via hardcopy (you will receive it once you become a member). I have read this publication for many, many years, and it is jam-packed with great articles.
And many of my colleagues from industry also read this publication and never miss an issue.
12) Be willing to do those tasks that others may not want to do. Early in my career, I volunteered to take minutes at meetings I attended. This was great experience, because I had to understand what I was writing. And I was a constant source of information for what happened and what did not. The same goes for project management: I was willing to lead project teams to fix problems when no one else would. This experience has served me well to this day.