To achieve a successful electronic health records (EHR) optimization while avoiding potential pitfalls, preparation is fundamental. Yet, even when an organization is set up for success with a carefully developed EHR optimization plan and the best professionals on the job, some project managers or IT directors may ask themselves whether their project is on the right track. Here are two clear indicators that your implementation is heading in the right direction.
Hitting the Right Targets
Ask yourself: Are we meeting the project goals in a timely manner? An optimization project that sticks to its timeline is primed for success, but it all comes down to the details. In some cases, targets can be subjective and reaching them may not be meaningfully related to the project’s success. It’s important to look at the most relevant data.
Go back to the key success factors of the optimization – the main benefits you’re seeking to achieve – and judge your progress against these. Always look at the goals that are closely aligned with your organization’s unique needs.
A good place to start is with your original optimization plan and its predetermined measurements and targets, which is a pivotal step in laying the foundation for success. The plan should set reasonable goals, each in a certain time frame, so progress can be checked from start to completion.
Look toward these pre-defined measurements to track progress and see how close you are to reaching these goals. Make sure you use objective metrics; just stick to the facts. If you’re hitting a good percentage of these targets, that is a strong indication that the optimization project is on the right track.
Team And Organizational Morale Is High
Among the most crucial EHR optimization challenges is getting everyone on board with the process. Here, some subjective measurements can be valuable in assessing how things are going. Despite all the data and numbers that go into it, it’s people that drive project management. The sense of value that team members feel during the optimization is meaningful. Look to them and see what they think. If morale is high, that’s a sign that things are going well.
It’s tempting to focus on all the things that are going slowly or not happening at all during an optimization project, even if they are relatively minor. This can have a negative effect on morale and hurt the project in the long run.
Successful projects maintain high morale by making room for positive feedback when targets are met and the optimization remains on track. This makes the team feel valued and increases the ultimate chance of success.
In addition to the optimization team itself, the rest of the organization should also have a positive attitude. Good communication between everyone involved is a typical favorable indicator. A successful EHR optimization (and implementation) engages staff, identifies champions among them, and lays the groundwork for a successful project. Forthcoming changes are communicated; relevant parties are scoped for potential problems; and team training best practices are followed. Having stakeholders and business partners on board helps to stabilize the project.
If your organization is doing well in both of these areas, you’re on your way to a successful EHR optimization.
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