4 Needs in a Healthcare ERP Implementation Partner

4 Needs to Look for in a Healthcare ERP Implementation Partner

At Pivot Point Consulting, we make sure every enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution fits the exact needs of each unique healthcare organization. We do this, in part, through the facilitation of open and transparent communication with all of our clients. 

During a recent ERP implementation, a member of our client team mentioned the need to include “rad” in the next meeting. An outside implementation consultant working separately with the client overheard the idea and offered praise.

“I would like to pause and say how awesome you all are,” said the consultant. “I mean, to refer to something as ‘rad’ is so cool. I love it.”

Puzzled, we looked at our client. They returned a smile, silently permitting us to politely educate the consultant. A member of our client team responded:

“When we say ‘rad,’ we’re referring to the Radiology department.”

Though this was a pleasant exchange and a nice moment of levity for all parties, it also showcases potential issues that can arise when consultants assigned to implement a specific system do not have healthcare-related knowledge. It can cause unnecessary complexity and require training to resolve, which can be especially frustrating to clients, who feel they shouldn’t have to educate consultants on the business of healthcare while paying them good money for their services.

When engaging partners to help implement an ERP solution, it is crucial to find one that is focused on healthcare, understands the business requirements to provide quality clinical care and understands the clinical systems, clinical workflows, and roles of the clinicians who provide this care.

Here’s what every healthcare organization should look for in a partner to help implement an ERP solution:

They Need to Speak the Language

Healthcare organizations reap many benefits from a thoughtfully built ERP system, including easier access to patient data, streamlined processes, improved customer service and much more. And, there are plenty of large firms that offer robust advisory, implementation and optimization services with consultants who have plenty of experience unlocking these benefits in specific ERP systems.

The challenge is that many of these resources may not understand the healthcare industry and are unable to speak the language of healthcare, as shown by the consultant in the “rad” example above. More often than not, this can add unnecessary complexity to an already challenging ERP implementation process.

But speaking the language of healthcare is more than just knowing vocabulary and terminology. It’s about having a deep understanding of the people, systems and workflows that are all crucial components of healthcare. Without this knowledge, your business won’t enjoy the highest levels of ERP performance and value.

That’s why it’s so important for your partner to speak the language of healthcare. When it comes to business system assessment, pre-planning, design, implementation, go-live support, optimization and managed services, you don’t want your needs getting lost in translation. 

They Need the Right Experience

In addition to speaking the right language, you want to ensure your partner has the right experience. When reviewing potential partners, here are some things you need to find out regarding their experience: 

  • How many years of industry experience do they have?
  • How many healthcare ERP implementations have they completed? 
  • What is their KLAS ranking
  • What do past clients say about their service?
  • Do they have a proven track record of working with all sizes of healthcare organizations across multiple specialties?
  • Do they understand multiple mediums within the healthcare vertical so they can provide the insight and guidance necessary to make the ERP work for your specific organization?

Remember, just because a firm is big doesn’t mean they’re necessarily the best at what they do. Take time to find organizations that have the experience needed, both in healthcare services and resources, to implement the ERP solution that best suits your organization.

Pivot Point consultants average more than 10 years of hands-on experience building, implementing, optimizing and upgrading ERP systems. Many of them also have direct clinical experience, adding to their rich knowledge and understanding of healthcare and your specific challenges.

They Need to Know the Systems

Another reason it’s so important to select an ERP consulting firm that understands the industry is because healthcare has specific workflows and systems that should seamlessly integrate with ERP systems

For example, an ERP consultant that has limited experience in integrating an ERP system with electronic health records (EHR) can create issues—both big and small—for a healthcare organization that needs to stand up a functioning and efficient ERP in an acceptable time frame.

Any potential partner needs to know clinical systems integration, clinical workflows and the healthcare professionals that will use the systems. Otherwise, you’ll have to spend additional time, money and resources addressing mistakes and shortcomings and potentially lose the opportunity to integrate these important systems.

They Need to Prioritize Efficiency

A properly configured ERP solution can do wonders to improve the efficiency and performance of your healthcare organization. However, this won’t happen unless your partner knows how to build a system—based on best practices and leading methodologies—that can address your organization’s specific areas of improvement.

For example, does your partner know enough about your patient care practices and processes to tailor a productive customer relationship management (CRM) tool within your ERP solution? Or, does your partner understand your revenue cycle management processes enough to build a finance and accounting component that can help increase efficiency, and in turn, revenue?

An experienced partner that knows healthcare and understands your organization will unlock efficiencies not only in your ERP solution, but in the overall implementation project and ongoing day-to-day operations well after the go-live. 

Your organization is rich with solid healthcare experience, and you should demand nothing less from your implementation partner. Using this article as your guide to finding the perfect partner should lead to a “rad” implementation experience and provide a firm foundation for success.  

Pivot Point Consulting works with healthcare systems nationwide to help them assess, implement and optimize their ERP/CRM systems. With award-winning post-live support and best in KLAS overall IT services, Pivot Point is the experienced partner you can trust to get things done right, on time and within budget.

Schedule a consultation to learn how we can help you realize the full potential and value of your ERP investment.