How To Determine Your Clinical Technology Selection Team

Source: Clinical Leader

In November 2019 Clinical Leader Live was proud to feature Larry Florin, president at LBF BioPharma Consulting, to discuss how clinical operations executives can Overcome The Challenges of a Clinical Technology Implementation. During the presentation, Florin covered several topics, including how to be a champion for the technology, how to determine your technology selection team, addressing your to do list, managing enthusiasm, and finding and vetting the right technology vendor. In this video, Florin discusses how to determine and recruit you clinical technology selection team.  

Click here to see the complete interview.


Ed Miseta: You had also talked about identifying a selection team. Can you tell me a little bit about that? Who is going to be on the selection team, and how should you go about selecting the individuals who would be a part of that?

Larry Florin: Yeah. That's another excellent, insightful question, Ed. I think again, some of these elements that I'm going to describe are very obvious. You want people who understand what the problem is, who will be affected by the work. I mean, first and foremost, those are the people that will help shape what is going to be done, how it's going to be done, what needs to be done.

You need to make sure that the people that are affected, not just directly but indirectly, people that may be upstream or doing work that will be affected by how this technology, what they need to do, how they need to change their way of working in order to meet or help satisfy what the expectations will be in terms of what that future change or technologic-driven change will be, and the people that will be affected further along the path. There may be things that you're doing that, the outputs that your team would provide, or your ability to do it more quickly might change the way that other people, that are your customers for instance, may work.

So it's important that you try to think about all of those elements in terms of identifying those individuals. And you want to take individuals that represent each of those groups that I'm defining as your key stakeholders. Primarily, the group that's going to be most affected, people that will have to change their way of working to accommodate what you may doing.

And then lastly, it's also important to think about, depending on the size of the project, if it's a small technology investment that only affects a few people, then what I'm about to say may not be all that important, but if it's a larger, what I would call enterprise that will affect the larger part of the organization, it's also important to have other distant support organizations, like finance, project management, maybe some operational people, because again, they'll help you round out many of the elements that need to be considered in terms of everything from building your business case to managing the financials of the project to project managing what could often be a very difficult exercise.

Ed Miseta: You mentioned a moment ago, naysayers. Would you ever include somebody like that on the selection team? I'm just curious if that's something that would help to bring them on board, or if that would be a way of sabotaging the whole project, right from the start.

Larry Florin: Well, my personal bias is that you want to convert those naysayers into supporters. That sounds a little, maybe I'm being dismissive of your question. I'm really not. I mean, I think if you're able to successfully do that, if not even in whole but in part, then you've done a great job in terms of actually moving the momentum of the program, overcoming some of that initial inertia that these individuals can cause.

To answer your question directly, my own experience is that it doesn't hurt to have one or two of those individuals maybe on the program, depending on what they're doing, how open-minded they're willing to be, how open-minded you're willing to be. Because again, it's important to remember that there's a whole series of examples that people can point to in terms of technology implementations, technology selections, that haven't proven very valuable, that have actually, maybe actually at some level, I don't want to say harmed an organization, but really they've derived no value and spent a lot of time and effort.

So maybe it's good to have people that have the contrarian point of view, because they'll maybe force you and your team and your colleagues to stop and think and say, "Hey, maybe that is an issue that we need to address." But it needs to be managed appropriately and you need to have an open, honest discussion with those individuals and say, "Look, I know you may not be 100% on board at this point, but I really do value your input and I think you can make a great contribution to this exercise."