People often ask me: "What does it take to implement Digital Pathology?"
My immediate reaction: "It takes vision. Buy-in. Planning. And execution. Like last year's NFL campaign slogan says, it takes all of us, really!"
My role is the Director of Customer Service and Support for Inspirata’s Digital Pathology group. In this short blog post, I’ll describe what it takes to delight our customers continuously and consistently, from the completion of every contract to the actual go-live, and beyond.
Active communication is at the heart of every successful onboarding of an Inspirata customer.
Active communication fosters a coordinated effort between many different parts of the company who need to execute important actions in a relatively short timeframe.
We need communication internally between the pre-sales, sales, and sales support, as well as contracting and delivery teams to understand the customer's expectations for our solution.
Naturally, we also need communication with our new customer, bringing in the perspectives of external stakeholders from throughout the customer organization. We need to coordinate with clinical, research, and educational leaders. We need to align the customer's IT department with our own IT team, as well as with any third-party vendors, such as slide scanner companies or AP-LIS vendors.
Communication is key but it has to go hand-in-hand with strong engagement.
Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to compare our implementation processes to those of other companies in our industry. I believe what makes Inspirata unique is our deep level of engagement through the establishment of:
- Program governance
- Workgroup leaders
- Project management for different areas of operations, IT and integration engineering
- Program and project planning
- Robust training for different user bases
Digital transformation projects are notoriously complex. Digital pathology is, of course, no different.
Therefore, both careful planning and the art of executing those plans are critical to success.
We establish recurring meetings, on-site visits, workflow analyses, and thoughtful collaboration. We regularly report our status and escalate any results or barriers to leadership sponsors to ensure timely decision-making. We carefully monitor milestones and consistently provide full project visibility to the entire team.
This process may sound trivial but many organizations skip some of those steps. Indeed, this process ensures our projects stay on track.
Going beyond the robust process, however, what makes us really proud is our full commitment to the success of every project. Our experience, our consultative approach, and our teamwork.
Together we can do so much.
There are several well-documented elements of highly functioning teams, which span any industry. At Inspirata, we follow four key elements that become cornerstones of our customer success stories:
First, we define and agree upon quantifiable goals. The ability to objectively measure our goals helps create accountability and encourages follow-through.
Second, we assign very clear roles for any implementation. We know what we will do on a day-by-day, and often even hour-by-hour, basis to maximize our collective output. There are many intersections in our teamwork and we want to ensure each of us has specific deliverables to achieve.
Next, we enable the sharing of knowledge and resources. We discourage a “must be invented here” mentality when it is appropriate to stand on the shoulders of those who have come before us. Yet we don't shy away from innovating where needed. We encourage ideation, suggestions, and thoughtful interaction to address challenging subjects when often more heads are better than one. Indeed, brainstorming can be so much fun!
And finally, we value commitment. Each of us as individuals commits not only to ourselves, but our peers. We commit our energy, a positive attitude, and a desire for continuous self-improvement. This is how we grow. Together.