February 25, 2015

Finding Your Ideal Healthcare IT Partner

In our previous article, we discussed the expectation gap that forms when an organization like yours engages a healthcare IT outsourcing firm to help with a software development project. To put it simply, the gap between the expertise you expect and the expertise they actually provide can derail your entire plan, leading to missed deadlines, budget overruns, and unhappy clients.

As we promised, we’re now going to take a look at what happens when you choose the wrong partner, and how you can avoid these headaches on your next project.

The Consequences of a “Poor-Fit” IT Partner

An ideal development partner will ensure your objectives are achieved and your finished solution meets or exceeds the initial expectations laid out in the Statement of Work. They’ll provide the best skills and talent for your project. They’ll chip in with a wide range of insights, experience, and business knowledge to help you achieve success. At all stages of the project, they’ll serve as your ally, work in your best interests, and stay focused on achieving the “big picture”—not just cranking out lines of code.

But the typical development partner? They fall well short of these ideals. They’ll provide a generic solution that consists of software development professionals who have only broad-based experience—not healthcare-specific expertise.

As a result, you can expect:

  • Missed deadlines. When you’re working with IT professionals who have never built healthcare software before, they may misjudge the amount of time needed to complete the project successfully.
  • Budget overruns. Time is money. An outsourcing partner who doesn’t fully understand your objectives and way of working may end up having to throw extra hours at the project—and it’s not likely they’ll work those hours for free.
  • An unsatisfactory final product. Running past deadline and over budget is bad enough. But when the result is a piece of software that doesn’t deliver on all your objectives, is difficult to use, and is costly and cumbersome to maintain, you’ve really shot yourself in the foot.

Working with developers who don’t “speak healthcare” inevitably leads to communication problems, delays….and disappointment. Here’s how to avoid that fate on your next development project.

Seven Questions for Your Next Development Partner

Don’t hire another software development partner without asking them:

  1. Do you have a development team that’s 100% dedicated to the healthcare industry?
  2. Can you take business or conceptual requirements and translate them into a workable development plan?
  3. What success have you had implementing complex projects that integrate multiple business processes and technologies?
  4. Have you been able to seamlessly integrate a development project into legacy healthcare IT systems?
  5. How do you conduct ongoing support services to ensure the long-term success of a project?
  6. Are you willing to provide fixed-bid projects?
  7. Will the team I meet in the sales cycle be the team that’s on the project right through to completion?

When you find a partner that can give you a satisfactory answer to each of these questions—it’s magic. Vicert knows, because we’ve been that partner to dozens of organizations.

To learn more about selecting your ideal partner download a free article from Vicert.

We would love to chat with you about your next healthcare software development project and help you get the job done on time, on budget, and in line with client expectations. How does your calendar look? Contact us at info@vicert.com

Author: Digital Health Team
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