Steps for Onboarding New Technology in Your Healthcare Practice

In recent articles, we’ve covered the many benefits of leveraging technology, software, and AI in healthcare practices. From operational efficiency to enhanced patient experience, the right software can streamline your business and propel your practice to the next level. 

In our modern age, it’s easy to convey to practice owners that they need technology. What’s difficult is figuring out how to integrate it. How do you choose the right software? How do you effectively leverage it? And, how do you ultimately measure its success? Those are the questions we answer in this article. 

For more in our technology series, visit these articles: 

How to Integrate New Technology in a Healthcare Practice

Step 1: Finding the Right Software Solution

With so many software companies available, how do you choose the right solution? We walk through some steps you can take to make an informed decision. 

Know your options. Choosing the right software for your business comes with researching what’s out there. With the emergence of AI, technology is rapidly evolving with new solutions. Do you need your systems to talk to each other? Are you hoping to automate a labor-intensive process? Would you like to improve your communication with patients? We cover just a few of the many available options in an article here

Look for inflection or friction points in your business. Technology is meant to solve a problem. Inefficient billing, patient cancellations, marketing hurdles–these can all be solved with the right software. Beyond solving problems today, it’s also important to understand the trajectory of your business. Where can technology help you scale sustainably? Is there a centralized solution that can support multiple practices? Technology can be an investment up front, but it can cut a great deal of time and cost as you grow. 

Perform a cost-benefit analysis. Despite having many options, it may not be possible to find a perfect solution that meets all of your needs and your budget. (For example, in the fragmented medical aesthetics industry, it’s still difficult to find systems that communicate with each other.)  Once you’ve reviewed your options and know what you’d like the technology to be able to do, perform a cost-benefit analysis based on your goals, expenses, and long and short-term profitability potential.

Step 2: Creating an Integration Plan

You’ve found the right technology, and now it’s time to integrate it into your practice. Almost like bringing in a new employee, you’ll need to set clear expectations–for both the technology and the people who will be using it. 

Build a 30-60-90 day plan. Set benchmarks for the first 30, 60, and 90 days of onboarding your technology. Leave time for setting up, meeting with the tech company, learning the system, and inputting the data you need as you roll it out.

Appoint an owner. You’ll need an internal go-to person to become the expert, champion, or owner of the new technology. This person will serve to get to know the product, manage the tasks of onboarding, and train other members of the team.

Review with the company. Depending on the tech company, you’ll have an account manager available to help with training, answering questions, and getting set up. Make sure to use this service to your advantage. Go into meetings prepared with questions, troubleshooting, and goals. 

Make it a habit. It takes time to turn something into a habit, but ideally, you’d like your systems to become a part of your organization’s culture. You don’t want to invest in a technology that you’re not truly going to leverage. If it’s a system that requires data-input, the results you’ll yield will only be as strong as the data you put in. Build systems and processes that empower your team to fully integrate the technology into their roles.

Step 3: Tracking and Measuring Success

Technology is an investment. It’s a line-item in your budget that you need to make sure is working for you in the way you intend it to. To do so, you’ll need data-points to be able to measure and goals you’ll be able to work toward. 

Define success. An employee needs to understand what success looks like in her role. So, too, does technology. If you invested in a CRM, it’s likely because you wanted to increase the number of leads at your practice to conversion. Setting target metrics around how you’d like to improve over time will help you measure (and troubleshoot) the success of your technology and the processes you’ve built around it. 

Assign KPIs. In order to measure, you’ll need to set Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). A dental practice may set some KPIs for a Revenue Cycle Management software, like Days in Accounts Receivable or Cost to Collect. A medical spa leveraging a text-automated appointment reminder may set a KPI around the percentage of appointment cancellations. Tracking these metrics over time will provide a clear picture of how your technology is performing. 

Be consistent. Keep in mind that with new technology, you’re reworking many overlapping systems and processes in your practice. Be patient and consistent as you integrate new software or features. You won’t be able to understand their impact until you’ve had some time to track it. 

Onboard New Technology in Your Healthcare Practice with Skytale Group

New systems are a heavy lift, but our consulting team is experienced in building out and measuring operations that make practices more efficient, scalable, and profitable. Reach out to our management consultants to learn more about adding lasting value to your healthcare practice.