Human Factor Ultimately Determines Success or Failure in Technology Rollouts

Katharine York, BS, Senior Clinical Systems Analyst, Rho

Katharine York, BS, Senior Clinical Systems Analyst, Rho

Don’t let the technology itself sidetrack you when mulling and implementing a big technology upgrade. Success or failure ultimately comes down to skillfully navigating the most basic human factors of communication and inspiration, according to a group of industry experts with a proven track record of success at Rho.

“One of the most important things in implementation is getting the right people in the room from the very beginning,” says Katharine York, BS, a senior clinical systems analyst with Rho. “You’ve got to obviously get buy-in from leadership, but don’t forget the people who are actually doing the data entry” when filling the meeting room with the right combination. “Get them onboard before the rollout” if possible, she stresses.

“Be clear about what core problem or area of operations you are trying to address with the new technology,” adds Rachel Berry, RN, MSN, senior director in operations with Rho. However, this isn’t about simply coming up with rousing platitudes, she warns. Rather, it’s about articulating “a clear definition of success.”

Another tip from the trenches: Don’t let time be your master. Too often, “new technology rollouts are driven by [some kind of artificial] timeline,” says Nick Poulson, PhD, a project lead with Rho. “Give yourself a realistic time frame,” he says. Otherwise, “people who feel rushed don’t always make the best decisions.”

“The pace of technological change is only going to become more frantic,” York says. “Give end users a sense of relief and confidence by setting up processes in advance, such as how you will vet vendors you engage in the technology rollout,” she adds.

Hang Ten: How to Surf the Wave of New Technology Without Wiping Out

Join York, Berry, and Poulson at ACRP 2020 in Seattle, May 1-4, for expert tips on identifying the right technologies to overcome challenges in your clinical trials. Learn how to configure technology to meet your needs, how to support user implementation, and more. Walk away with tools for tech rollout success.

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Further, just as good political campaign leaders will tell you about the importance of message repetition, it’s also the case with technology rollouts, York says. “Keep bringing [the team] back to the original value proposition,” she says.

York likens it to a physical workout plan. “Remind people at four weeks they’ll be seeing and feeling certain milestones, and do the same at eight weeks, and 12” or whatever time frame is appropriate for the technology rollout, she says. “Keep reminding people of the dividends,” she stresses. “Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint” to success.

Author: Michael Causey