Thursday, September 27, 2012

New RFID/RTLS Opportunities lists current opportunities to land RTLS/RFID contracts.  There are sole source announcements and open opportunities.  Type in RTLS or RFID into the Key Word box. Hit Search.  Then read the instructions for contact information.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


During October 2012, the following companies and organizations will feature my articles in their online publications.

Organization: RFID in Healthcare Consortium
My TitleFiscal and Physical Visibility:A Challenge to the Status Quo
Date: October 1, 2012

Company: Xerafy
Title: Passive and Active RFID In The Healthcare Environment
Date: October 2, 2012

Company: E-ISG Asset Intelligence
My Title - This is an interview on the challenges of asset management
Date: October 15, 2012

Company: Clean India Journal - Pending

Thanks for your interest. Remember to check out my book, Covering Your Assets by Exposing the Butt-Ugly Truth, online at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Preview for free.
-- Rare perspective
-- Testifies of Successes, Failures, and Near Calamities
-- Engaging and character centered 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Update 20 Sep 21012, VA RTLS - Protest of Solicitation# VA118A-12-RP-0118

Here is a portion of the statement I received from the Vetaran's administration.  "FOIA Exemption 5, [5 U.S.C. § 552 (b)(5)], which protects from disclosure all inter-agency or intraagency memorandums or letters which would not be available by law to a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency."

Basically, they are saying I can't have the information.  The letter goes on to say that it is not within the function of the Veterans' Office of the Freedom of Information Act to provide other than copied documents and I can't have that either. 

I was referred to the General Counsel's office.  My rebuttal was pretty simple.  What is asserted as not in compliance with the regulations?

Even in matters of national security or Security and Exchange Commission violations, we can know the charges.  Not that anyone broke the law.  If the protest claims that some function within the regulation was not followed, we should be able to obtain that right?

I am putting together the information that the General Counsel requires. What do you think? For a bid protest, should the public have access to the information about specific regulations a plaintiff says the government did not follow?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

RFID/RTLS Transcendent or Something Else?

What is the difference between a sledgehammer and a computer chip?  A person can do more damage with a computer chip.  I believe that technology can help provide transcendent customer service and performance outcomes when integrated with other applications and a well written plan.  Transcendent - I mean going well beyond the current practices or trends.  

For example, in the case of Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) and Real-Time Location Systems (RTLS), empowering  employees by letting them see real-time data for self-measurement seems like a good idea.   I have done it  with a maintenance application where technicians could see their progress on response time and escalation.  The actual repair was a separate evaluation process that came later.

- The idea is to write Key Performance Indicators  which RTLS/RFID data can support.
- Make it easy for an employee to view their performance against those Key Performance Indicators. 
- Insure the display/dashboard can reflect the results of the employee's personal efforts to improve their performance.
- Supervision would be required to use the same results as part of the appraisal process.

However, there is a serious downside as well... like using facial recognition to check if the employee is smiling.  Someone’s probably thinking of how to detect a smile 99% of the time, then automatically send a text message or Mr. Grumpy animated gif when a smile is not detected.  Remote monitoring for the Smile Police?   

How do you think RFID/RTLS technologies can be transcendent in customer service and performance outcomes?

How would you do it?

What are the things that companies should absolutely avoid? 

Please leave a comment.  Thanks

Friday, September 14, 2012

Global Distribution Part 2

One step closer in obtaining multiple channels for global distribution.  
Now, I need to focus on how many books they will stock.  

What's next from Al? B2B announcement, Asset Management consulting announcement, and book 2. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Update 13 Sep 21012, VA RTLS - Protest of Solicitation# VA118A-12-RP-0118

As part of the normal bid protest process, there is a protective order concerning the solicitation.  Redacted copies may have been provided to those who are an "interested" party in the solicitation.  But there are limits.  The regulation states: Interested party means an actual or prospective bidder or offeror whose direct economic interest would be affected by the award of a contract or by the failure to award a contract. - Source GAO

When speaking to the Veterans Administration, I did make a remark that a lot of peoples' economic interest may ride on this one. 

Anyway, according to General Accounting Office, GAO, guidance on redaction: Each individual covered under this protective order shall take all precautions necessary to prevent disclosure of protected material. In addition to physically and electronically securing, safeguarding, and restricting access to the protected material in one’s possession, these precautions include, but are not limited to, sending and receiving protected material using physical and electronic methods that are within the control of individuals authorized by this protective order or that otherwise restrict access to protected material to individuals authorized by this protective order. Protected material may be sent using electronic mail unless objected to by any party in this protest. The confidentiality of protected material shall be maintained in perpetuity. The freedom of information act may offer a solution.

However, I am not necessarily seeking a redacted copy, only the nature of the protest.  For example, is the protest an issue with the manner in which the Request for Proposal was constructed, meaning that it may not adhere to the law? Or is the issue with the evaluation process?  

I do not see anything proprietary in this information.  
Hopefully, I can get this information to you soon.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Bring Your Own Device and MobileCon

Sitting… waiting…a South African choir plays over my car stereo.  Human voices with no musical accompaniment blend together, amazingly, beautifully simple.  Earthy harmonies pull me to thoughts on an event one month and 2500 miles away.  MobileCon convenes in San Diego, CA.  Lots of preparation, I need this time.

I plan to arrive at MobileCon in time for the preconference on October 8 as part of the RFID in Healthcare Consortium.  MobileCon, where an international community comes together for a common goal: to support the global mobile information technology community.   A technical problem honors no boundaries, honors no borders, honors no religion.  We may use competing or emerging technologies and still share the same problem. For example, when an employee uses their personal device to conduct business or perform work-related tasks, regardless of the hardware or application or location, businesses must address the risks.  The accidental or purposeful release of what can end up being the data story of a person or business has value in illegal markets.  As individuals working together, we share and collectively solve these issues to protect the information entrusted to us.

BYOD, Bring Your Own Device, BYOT, Bring Your Own Technology, good or bad, plus or minus, people are doing it.  They are using personally owned devices to access networks, exchange data, communicate with others, and do work related tasks -maybe for the same reasons I did.  Sometimes one must act! Waiting is not an option.

In previous assignments, I spent normal business hours communicating with people to coordinate and resolve issues.  Nights were spent doing things that I no longer had to speak with anyone about or due the following morning.  Eventually, I would run into an access or a browser issue. IT ran much fewer resources at night.   So, I turned to my personal laptop to get the job done.  When asked why I always had my personal laptop with me, I remained open and honest about the reason.  As long as the work was done, there was never an issue.  In fact, my bosses seemed to appreciate that I didn’t use those types of issues as an excuse.  The IT departments did not complain because they were stressed for time and resources the same or perhaps worse than me.

I could give more examples. Like of the time I was on dial-up and my average success to connection was over 100 attempts – after each time I was knocked offline.   

Anyway, did my behavior help or hurt?  Or was keeping a high-visibility, $40M project with thousands of moving pieces on track and on time the ultimate trump card?  No one ever counseled me on the business use of my personal laptop.  In contrast, there was immediate concern directed at anyone whose actions or inaction even appeared to threaten a project timeline.

Work with the RFID in Healthcare Consortium comes first, but I definitely plan to educate myself more on the financial benefits and strategies of BYOD/T while at MobileCon.      

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Asset Management and Equity

This post follows up on 2 accompanying articles: The Best Capital PlaybookEver!  published by and Capital Programs and the Cost of Doing Business, published by Asset Management for Healthcare .

The Best Capital Playbook Ever! pokes fun at what seems like a norm in hospital capital programs.  The process tends to result in creating problems rather than solutions:  excess equipment, poor utilization, and inconsistent reporting. 

Capital Programs and the Cost of Doing Business, takes a look at the philosophical reasons these occur.   I believe leadership often sees asset management functions as expense centers instead of centers that increase equity.  Also, asset management positions, as one sees in other industries, are hardly found in healthcare.  The blog post gave the following example and argument:

“A department has $1,000,000 in overhead cost.  Projects and initiatives generated by that department slices $3,000,000 from corporate cost over the previous 3 years, actually freeing up cash that previously trended as spent in that category.  The department has decreased the total liabilities in comparison to total assets.  Is that not a form of equity… actually an increase in equity?  If equity is increased, that is a factor of revenue”.   I concluded by stating that a company should invest in equity increasing departments. 

Make your initial investment a huge one.  Invest in generating thoughts.  The result should be insuring that cash and credit are available to act on strategically important acquisitions needed for growth and reactions to market forces… or cuts in reimbursements.  These are strategically important to knowing the cost of capital as well.      

So, here’s one thought, The function of Asset Management is to increase the profitability of revenue projections, reduce risks, reduce costs, and recover investment.  Next, put together Key Performance Indicators, KPIs, to measure the effectiveness of the program. 

Please bear with me a moment.  Give me a KPI for The Joint Commission biomedical equipment repair preventive maintenance completion rate.  Give me a KPI for your Emergency Room wait time (doesn’t matter if you never consistently obtain it.)  Give me a KPI for percent of claims paid.  Give me a KPI for nosocomial infections.  You may not be able to recall all the KPIs but you can guarantee they are written somewhere.  What is your KPI for the capital equipment projections?  Not what percentage of the list you plan to buy or how much money you are trying to save but the very reason that you established the list in the first place.

Here is what I mean.  In my book, Covering Your Assets By Exposing The Butt-Ugly Truth, I recommended that we consider KPIs  to measure the effectiveness of capital planning programs for the following areas: no longer supportable, beyond economical repair, and clinically insufficient.   There are times when things just happen.  More often than not, we can project and prioritize those requirements even in the asset intensive environment of healthcare.  Writing the KPIs before writing the detail of the policy guides the development of the program’s expectation from the beginning.  

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Current Global Distribution Amazon

This follows up to the video post on 8/22/2012.  Currently, Amazon has my paperback, Covering Your Assets By Exposing the Butt-Ugly Truth, available in the following countries:

US ProtectoratesPuerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, U.S. Minor Outlying Islands, Guam, American Samoa and Northern Mariana Islands
APO/FPOArmy Post Office and Fleet Post Office
EuropeAustria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Guernsey, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Jersey, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales)
AsiaChina, Hong Kong, India, Israel, Japan, French Polynesia, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Palau, Singapore, South Korea
Outside US, Eur., CA, AsiaArgentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico, South Africa