Assignment based on workplace- To analyse competitive strategy in industry

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Individual Practical Assignment Based on Workplace

Woodlands Health Campus Vs SingHealth


The underlying assignment is based on presenting and discussing information regarding Woodlands Health campus, and, its strategic position in the industry. There is detailed discussion on the history, competitive structure, current market position, business strategies used by the firm and overall implications of the same on the performance of the organisation. In context to present market condition and industry position, different strategies aspects pertinent to the overall performance of Woodlands Health campus is discussed in order to outline and recommend future strategic moves and action plans. 

Along with it, the assignment also foster discussion on one of the competitor of Woodlands Health campus named Singhealth Group. The discussed proceed in the same manner, discussing firm, its history, management and organisation structure, current competitive position and recent performance. The discussion concluded with the comparative analysis of both firms highlighting points of similarities and differences, and, necessary derivation or conclusion regarding management of firms in the business environment. 

Globally speaking, healthcare industry is highly transformational in nature brainstorming and emerging up with new predictions and trends. Despite on-going political and economic uncertainties and cost pressure, global healthcare industry is reporting stable growth rate in the year 2018. It is expected that digital health investments have crossed $6.5 billion in 201, which is 109% higher than the previous year, along with $1.85 trillion growth in terms of manufacturers’ revenues (Das, 2017). In the coming time period, it is expected that this growth curve would continue to increase on account of new technological advancements and platform solutions promoting innovation in health care delivery, outcomes and chronic disease management. Moreover, high growth opportunities in emerging markets and geographical rollouts also contributed in changing the paradigm of product development and service offerings in health care sectors (Das, 2017). 

Industry overview 

In this section, there is discussion on the Singapore’s health care industry size, potential growth areas, market positions, and competitive challenges prevailing in the industry. 

Singapore healthcare industry is renowned for its best health infrastructures in the world. The ageing population and medical tourism has driven the demand of improved health care in the near future. As per the findings of Towers Watson, Singapore is ranked 6th in the World Health Organisation’s ranking of world health systems, on account of efficient and widespread healthcare system. In the same token, Bloomberg has also ranked health care system of Singapore as the most efficient in the world in 2014, along with it; Economist Intelligence Unit has placed and ranked Singapore 2nd among 166 countries for delivering improved health care outcomes and results. Singapore’s health care sector is managed by Ministry of Health, Singapore government, consists of government funded healthcare system and private players. The major source of funding and financing in Singapore’s healthcare is mixed set of government subsidies, compulsory savings, cost sharing and healthcare insurance (The Singapore medical industry, 2018).

Singapore is expected to showcase the best care and practices in healthcare delivery and medical technology in the coming years. The total healthcare spending is expected to grow on an average 3,000 USD per capita, fostering several opportunities to new entrants. The upcoming Sengkang General and Community Hospital, Outram Community Hospital, Integrated Care Hub and Woodland General Hospital are likely to open in the next five years, adding 3,200 hospital beds and 1,050 community hospital beds in an attempt to accommodate more number patients and providing them with health care solutions. In this context, it is predicted that Singapore’s hospital bed to people ration will incline to 2.6-2.8 for every 1000 people in the coming 2020-2030. Besides, healthcare expenditure is also expected to get triple by the end of 2030 on account of ageing demographics (Singapore Healthcare Market is Expected to Register Revenues Worth SGD 18 Billion by 2022: Ken Research). On the basis of projected population growth of Singapore, it is estimated that healthcare expenditure would get triple by 2030. In numeric terms, it is expected to rise from SGD 17 billion in 2013 to SGD 44 billion in 2030. Personal healthcare expenditure would also rise from SGD 11 billion in 2013 to SGD 28 billion in 2030, personal healthcare expenditure comprises of 64% of total healthcare expenditure, posing it as one of the major potential growth area in health care sector (Singapore Healthcare Market is Expected to Register Revenues Worth SGD 18 Billion by 2022: Ken Research). 

Apart from increasing expenditure and number of healthcare providers, Singapore health care industry is also facilitated by the three crucial strategies formulated by the Ministry of Health, Singapore. The three healthcare strategies are based on pursuit of clinical research, long term care improvement and focus on more sophisticated care to general people. The Singapore government has also implemented MediShield Life, healthcare insurance in order to assure people with pre-existing conditions, along with health coverage and access to medical care. 

The healthcare market of Singapore is also driven by strong organic expansion of public hospitals funded by government, with the expectation of increasing more by 2022. The increased government initiatives in the healthcare sector is expected to rise by 2022 for providing better care to the geriatric populations and patients suffering from severe chronic diseases. Furthermore, increasing public private partnership in the country also drive R&D investment for encouraging clinical trials in pharmaceutical market. It is also done in lieu of the belief that best-in-class R&D and manufacturing infrastructure would act as stimulating factor in attracting foreign investment. As pharmaceutical companies of Singapore get inventions of new drugs, its approvals will benefit general public through widening product portfolio of healthcare companies and widening their geographic presence by opening up more number of outlets (Singapore: A Global Hub For Innovation, 2018). 

In terms of potential threats and risks, it can be said that there are no major barrier in the Singaporean economy with respect to health care services. It is an open economy with no custom duties on medical devices. The health care industry at Singapore is run and organised on assumption of keeping trade open, inviting new players and entrants to access to new technologies and devising new solutions. However, Singapore lags behind in manufacturing medical devices as majority of equipment and medical devices are sourced from Germany, US and other European economies. The local production is primarily done through export and contract manufacturing, other than this, healthcare industry is open for embracing new opportunities for pursuing economic growth and bringing influx of new solutions in the years to come (The Singapore medical industry, 2018). 

In light of this, Singapore’s healthcare industry is recognised as Good Avenue opening numerous opportunities for players to grow, evolve and develop through developing new and improved set of health care solution. 

Workplace overview: Woodlands Health campus (WHC)


Woodlands Health campus (WHC), a member of the National healthcare group, set to open in 2022 as a 1,800 bedded facility comprising acute hospital, community hospital and long term care facility, spread over 7.66ha site. It master plan and envisions personalised and quality healthcare for the community through establishing an open and welcoming campus, with various activities organised within the campus to encourage staff and patients for engaging in active lifestyle (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

Management and organisation structure 

Organisational structure is defined in terms of pattern used for allocating tasks and responsibilities in the organisation. For ensuring smooth run in the organisation, it is necessary to define organisation structure for conducting tasks and activities in an authentic and efficient manner, and, accomplishing tasks successfully. WHC is operated under the National Healthcare Group, therefore considers and adheres to a hierarchical structure where there are several leaders and authorities responsible for managing and handling wide range operations and tasks. Members of hierarchical organisation structure communicate and interact with their immediate superior, communication flows from top to bottom and, subordinates are expected to follow given instructions and guidelines. A hierarchy works in pyramid manner where power status and ranking of the person is clearly defined and discussed. The performance of employees matter a lot in this hierarchical structure where they are promoted as long as they are performing effectively, and, rising their levels of competence and intelligence. 

Competitive Strategy/ approach 

WHC envisions person-centric and quality healthcare for the community by integrating three components-SMART technology, green spaces and strong ecosystem. It is intended to open progressively in 2022, where an expansive healing environment is created for fulfilling patient and general people needs. It will emerge as a major health hub where patients are provided with enhanced and quality healthcare facilities. Most importantly, it is designed in the manner where residents can stay and engage in activities for cherishing and enjoying their life to the optimum (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

There are three components of competitive strategy of WHC-improving patient care and enhancing productivity through SMART technology, greater integration of care, and, dedicated parkland for patient healing. In detailed terms, SMART technology is crucial in improving quality of patient care, and, utilising less manpower. SMART technology is embedded in different aspects of WHC, such as building infrastructure, hospital operations, care delivery and patient experience. Artificial intelligence for supporting and handling large amounts of data, making informed decision, and reducing medical errors. Likewise, robotics also need to be placed for automating backend logistics, such as food services, warehousing, housekeeping, and other personal needs of patients (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

Secondly, greater integration of care is offered by carefully and thoughtfully designing clinical spaces supported by innovative care model in the campus. The grouping of specialist outpatient clinics is also done for consulting patients according to diseases, healthcare specialist, nurses and therapists are also appointed for facilitating easy and quick coordination of care. Thirdly, WHC is dedicated by including open and inviting campus with green spaces providing patients with relaxing and healing environment. The green spaces also accommodate facility for recreational and rehabilitation activities for giving relaxing and comfortable environment (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

Current competitive position in the market

The competitive position of WHC is defined in terms of ‘future ready’ which seeks to meet growing challenge of ageing population while facing challenge of manpower constraints. For handling manpower constraints, WHC depends heavily on smart technology for reducing manpower needs and delivering improved and quality care services to patients. Its competitive position is also expected to be strong as it will include acute and community hospitals, nursing home and specialist clinics, built together in the same building, sharing same medical professionals allowing patients to seamlessly receive services, with no barrier or difficulty (Khalik, 2017). 

The government officials at Ministry of Health, Singapore argued that competitive position of WHC depends on its capability of embracing new technology, such as data analytics and artificial intelligence, for reducing manual work and improving patient care. For example, medical information and ordering of medicine is expected to be automated for allowing healthcare professionals and nurses to focus and attend patients more activity, rather than engaging in clinical and direct patient care roles (Woodlands Integrated Healthcare Campus (Singapore), 2015). 

Another major factor determining and shaping competitive position of WHC is using telehealth facility allowing people to quickly medical and hospital services, such as registration, ordering medication, making payment, etc from their own homes. As a part of it, placing robots is also a good option for facilitating and performing back-end logistics tasks such as housekeeping, with no need of deploying people for it. In all, competitive position of WHC is based on building a single, integrated campus for serving comprehensive needs of patients, ranging from urgent to recovery to end of life (Khalik, 2017). 

Core resources and capabilities

WHC is proposed to establish on land space of around 7.66 hectares, which is approximately around 11 football fields. 

Including provision of 1,800 beds intended to develop in phases and stages. 

Progressive operations starting from 2022, including acute care and long term care for patients. 

Approachable, it is located at the walking distance to underground Woodlands South MRT station (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

Other set of resources and capabilities are:

a) Integrated acute and community hospital: WHC is equipped with a fully integrated acute and community hospital. The emergency department is also connected with sites, cities’ major diagnostic facilities, operational theatres and intensive care units, providing quick and easy transfer of critically ill patients. The wards offering acute and community hospital are located in the same building, allowing patients to easily and seamlessly access care and services. 

b) Specialist Outpatient Clinics (SOCs): Provision of creating dedicated SOC block connected with the hospital through a bridge. It is also supported by satellite radiology, outpatient rehabilitation and outpatient pharmacy. Patients are allowed to quickly approach range of specialists, health care professionals, nurses and therapists in a single clinic visit, eliminating need of re-visiting clinic. 

c) Long term care: A kind of cluster-living environment promoting dignity and fostering independence among patients. The health centre is equipped with dementia friendly facility allowing family members to spend quality time with the residents of long term care. The living room space also plans and conducts different types programs for seniors and the youth (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

d) Community Space: WHC is also featured with open and inviting community spaces allowing patients, staff and visitors to enjoy the wide array greenery and open space. 

e) Healing forest garden: Another major resource in the preview of WHC designed by the National Parks Board. It is segmented into four zones according to the level of engagement and visitors’ behaviour, depending on the natural environment. WHC aims at encouraging mental, emotional and physical health of patients and restoring their conditions, where four zones are designed in the manner of providing serene environment, leisure walking, and meditation, facilitating social interactions, activity lawns, community gardens and play areas. 

f) Therapeutic gardens: Designed in consultation with national parks, it is located within the campus for supporting and assisting various therapeutic needs of patients. In line of it, specially chosen plans and careful landscaping within therapeutic gardens also aims at providing restorative environment for patients during rehabilitation programs (Woodlands Health Campus, 2017). 

Current performance

As discussed, Woodlands Health campus (WHC) aims to serve population of Singapore’s northern region when it will begin operations progressively in the next five year, by the end of 2022. In light of this, performance statistics of the WHC depends on the extent to which it uses smart technology for improving quality of patient care. The leverage of SMART technology is necessary to enhance care within the hospital and extending the reach of healthcare professionals into the community. The patients are looking forward for easy accessibility of acute and intermediate health care services by breaking and surpassing organisational and process boundaries (Woodlands Integrated Healthcare Campus (Singapore), 2015). 

The rapid increase of ageing population in the Singapore’s northern region asks for more and better consolidated healthcare facilities, and, WHC is expected to establish as state-of-the-art healthcare centre including acute care hospital, community hospital and nursing home. It is designed for fulfilling the principles of health-promoting and securing, through incorporating necessary facilities and features. The proposal of WHC expects to offer optimum healthcare services through 1,800 beds, 1,400 emergency and reconvalescent care and 400 long-term care thereby creating an integrated portfolio of health care (Woodlands Integrated Healthcare Campus (Singapore), 2015). 

Future challenges and recommendations 

The Singapore’s ageing population is the most evident challenge likely to face by WHC, with the changing demographics and evolution of ageing population, there will be need of more beds, equipment and medical facility. As WHC sets to progressively develop in 2022 with 1,800 beds, 400 emergencies and reconvalescent care and 400 long-term care, these all facilities and equipment would not be adequate enough for covering with the emerging needs of ageing population. It is, therefore, recommended to improve and widen available facilities and equipment for covering emerging needs of ageing population, and, comprehensively covering their medications. 

Key competitor: SingHealth 


SingHealth is incorporated in 2000 as largest group of healthcare institutions consist of four public hospitals, nine polyclinics and five speciality centres. In its portfolio, Singapore General Hospital, oldest and largest hospital of Singapore, along with speciality centres are also included. SingHealth Group consistently launches initiatives on health-related matters and wellness issues affecting Singaporeans, in this context, it has merged with Eastern Health alliance in 2017. The organisation of SingHealth includes primary care, general hospitals and community hospitals for offering comprehensive coverage to people (SingHealth: Corporate profile, 2018). 

Management and organisation structure 

SingHealth pursues and follows flat and open organisation structure instead of hierarchical structure where authority and responsibility moves or flows in sequential manner. Instead, SingHealth aims at involving and engaging all nature personnel of diverse background and skills for improving clinical outcomes and trials. It is argued that personnel involvement at all levels and categories is necessary for tracking the quality of clinical services provided to patients and improving it accordingly. In measuring and improving clinical outcomes and results, it is crucial to monitor firm’s performance consistently timely and to the date for continual advancements. 

The flat organisation structure empowers personnel and employees to participate in decision making process, interact and converse with authorities and personnel for arriving at best possible decisions and outcomes. The involvement of personnel is not decided and guided by the boundaries and their designation, rather than, boundaries are highly flexible allowing personnel to reach and approach highest authorities as and when required. Moreover, performance monitoring and evaluation is also done on real-time basis where employees are provided with constant feedback and information regarding their performance. There is also provision of conducting and organising face-to-face meetings and conversations of personnel with authorities in order to arrive at improvement areas with possible solutions (Tham, 2018). 

Competitive strategy 

SingHealth works on the mission of improving lives of patients through care, teaching and research. For this, organisation is dedicated for leveraging key synergies to transform healthcare and improving patients’ results and outcomes. In this context, competitive strategy is based on creating framework for specialists and health care professionals to work upon and leverage on the unique strengths and competencies for imparting smooth delivery service to patients. It is believed that health care professionals from diverse disciplines including medicine, obstetrics, oncology, cardiovascular, paediatrics, neuroscience and other fields for sourcing specialists in order to leverage on the unique strengths and imparting quality service care to patients. For this, SingHealth also partnered with Duke-NUS for sourcing professionals across different platforms and forums (SingHealth Annual Report, 2012). 

Second key component of competitive strategy is stimulating research and education for catalysing and experimenting new ideas and themes. There are several education and research institutes established for innovating and developing new ideas. In September 2012, launch of AM-EI in conjunction with Teachers’ day is a major endeavour, in this regard, for bringing together community of passionate educators for building culture of excellence through teaching and mentorship. On the research front, it has found that SingHealth works in collaboration with Singapore General Hospital (SGH) and KK Women’s Children’s Hospital for fostering new developments and collaborations in scientific, clinical and quantitative areas. It is also done for bringing different research proposals, securing grants, executing projects and publishing new findings and observations (SingHealth Annual Report, 2012). 

Current competitive position 

The current competitive position of SingHealth is defined in terms of offering improved level service at world-class standard of excellence for Singaporeans residing at different facets of society. For achieving this, SingHealth consistently improves systems, processes and clinical networks for offering quality care to all patients. The framework of competitive position of SingHealth includes ‘delivering on target, record number of heart transplants, effective management of chronic diseases, IT innovations, and making care affordable (SingHealth: from principles to performance, 2011). 

In detailed terms, SingHealth’s commitment for quality convention is visualised as an opportunity for staff members to foster their talents and competencies. The staffs are always encouraged for renewing their commitment and adding ‘X’ factor for engaging heart as well as mind, for bringing difference in the work. Secondly, SingHealth Group procurement office also works closely with various SingHealth institutions in order to reduce the total cost of ownership. This strategy worked and led SingHealth to achieve total savings of $9.5 million, despite increasing costs in electricity and housekeeping. The challenges and faced by healthcare professionals in meeting evolving chronic diseases and its impact on patients health is also done optimally by SingHealth (SingHealth: from principles to performance, 2011). 

For this, experts from different clusters are invited and asked for sharing their experiences in implementing, measuring and evaluating new clinical programs for bringing real improvements in chronic disease conditions and illness. Fourthly, SingHealth is also committed for delivering best cardiac care in the region; it is done through depicting strong commitment for cardiac excellence, providing rehabilitation and recovery for the patients and caregivers. Lastly, SingHealth also enjoys expertise in promoting primary care, disease management, promoting and implementing healthcare initiatives on time and moment (SingHealth: from principles to performance, 2011). 

Core resources and capabilities

SingHealth is equipped with both tangible and non-tangible resources and competencies where tangible resources are concerned with availability of beds, surgical equipment, procedures, number of surgeons and health care professionals, and many more, on the other hand, non-tangible resources include dedication of the firm for integrating quality care and achieving improved patients outcomes in daily routine work and activities. The three aspects-service, education and research are three main pillars validating firm’s efforts in providing patient care and service deliver at internationally recognised standards, which eventually results in high quality care for patients (SingHealth: Suppliers business conduct, 2018). 

For emerging and recognising as leader in health care industry, SingHealth strive for bringing together collective expertise of different professionals and partners. It is always emphasised to build and nurture close relationship with institutions and partners for improving quality of overall research, education and service offerings. The competency of any healthcare organisation also depends and determined by the talent and skills present in the healthcare staff. In this context, training and education is placed at high priority with adequate investments for consistently improving quality standards. The research arena is also stimulated through working in partnering association with government agencies, philanthropic organisations and other research wings for optimising and developing new streams of research. It is done for promoting vibrant research culture boosting leading-edge clinical practice in healthcare field or sector (SingHealth: Corporate profile, 2018). 

Current performance

According to the annual report 2017, SingHealth Group has performed adequately well in terms of manpower appointed in medical, dental, nursing, allied health and others. SingHealth reported increase in the number of personnel in all areas-medical, dental, nursing, allied health and others. In 2017, there are 22,698 personnel which are increased up to 28,558 in 2018. Moreover, number of beds also increased from 3,165 in 2017 to 4,038 in 2018 along with rise in inpatients, day surgeries, inpatient surgeries, and other clinical activities (SingHealth Duke-NUS Academic Medical Centre Annual Report 2017/2018). The key figures of performance statistics of SingHealth is shown in the form of image shown below:


Future challenge and recommendations 

In context to SingHealth, fostering preventive health to Singapore’s ageing population is the key challenging factor, along with rising incidence of chronic diseases and increasing healthcare costs. These factors pose challenge of ensuring right sitting care and treatment to patients ensuring that they are getting cost-effective, appropriate treatment. For gearing up to meet future healthcare needs of Singaporeans, it is necessary to work on the innovative programs, partnering with healthcare players, and, coming up new healthcare solutions for providing seamless, integrated care to people (SingHealth, 2018). 

Synthesis and integration 

Comparison between Woodlands Health campus (WHC) and SingHealth 

On the basis of detailed analysis and discussion of both Woodland Health campus and SingHealth, it is understood that both the firms aim at offering quality oriented care and improved clinical outcomes to its patients. This point of similarity is executed through hiring and appointing team of health care professionals, stimulating research and development arena, conducting wide range clinical trials and experiments, etc for facilitating patients with quality oriented care and services. 

Considering the differences, the main distinguishable factors are the foothold and reach in the healthcare industry. SingHealth is an old player operating through multiple institutions and firms engaged in offering comprehensive set of healthcare services to patients, on the other hand, Woodland Health campus is a new player intending or proposing entry in healthcare sector by 2022. On account of it, both institutions are widely differing in terms of their competitive advantage, position, resources and competencies. SingHealth is in strong and improved position of offering wide range health programs and initiatives to people of the city and region. Its team consist of multi-disciplinary professionals, dieticians; medical social workers, physiotherapists, psychologists, etc are highly competent in providing relevant knowledge to guide employees on different aspect of patient’s health and empowering them with latest medical equipment and knowledge to take positive steps in fostering healthy living to people. Woodlands Health campus is on the proceeding pathway of making strong foothold in the industry through widening team of healthcare professionals, expertise and competencies. 

Conclusions and recommendations for WHC

From the above detailed discussion and comparative analysis, it is acknowledged that Woodlands Health campus (WHC) is proposed to open and established in 2022 with an integrated portfolio of acute care, preventative care and long term care. Since, WHC would be a new player in the healthcare sector, it is imperative to give attention to certain concerns and areas to be worked and improved upon in the coming time period. WHC is established with the mission and philosophy of offering quality oriented care in nourishing and engaged environment where patients are not burdened with the feel of disease and other chronic illness, and, waiting for their time to recover and starting living life optimally. It is envisioned not to impart patient with the belief of struggling with chronic disease and illness, rather than, providing them with engaging atmosphere where patients love to live and reside at, in duration of their struggle. 

The set of recommendations for WHC is based on three pillars-service, education and research. These three tails of the WHC should indicate progressiveness in pursuit of improvements. In simple words, committee members and other strategic leaders at WHC should adopt the theme of ‘from principles to performance’ for showcasing patient-centred outcomes and improving healthcare pillars. As a part of it, WHC should focus on moving and transiting from ‘service to satisfaction’ where patients should be kept at the centre of all, and, it should be attempted to deliver service from the heart and soul, with the aim of providing best possible care experience to patients and families. 

Second theme should be ‘from education to empowerment’ where quality training programs and collaborations need to be conducted for empowering staff members to perform the best of their capabilities and finding fulfilment in their work. The environment of knowledge transfer, mentoring and grooming of future generations should be nourished and improved upon for developing competent healthcare professionals. Third theme should be ‘from research to remedies’ for spurring spirit of inquiry among professionals for translating new findings and pushing the frontiers for better patient cures and outcomes. 

Last but not the least, WHC also needs to consistently improve its clinical outcomes and results by benchmarking against best standards and practices in the world, for strengthening clinical governance and leadership, and, fulfilling mission of ‘transforming healthcare, day by day’. 

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