A wise move indeed, especially given the changing landscape and competitive nature of ERP in Healthcare. Less than 2 years ago, the top two vendors, according to this latest KLAS report, did not even appear in the top ten!
Clearly, choosing the right ERP vendors (& their implementation partners) is critical to achieving success.
But how do you know you are choosing the right ERP vendor or implementation partner?
Relying solely on industry reports, vendor marketing or what others are doing is not the answer. Just because you think you are a similar organization to others who may be selecting a vendor (and/or implementer) you THINK is right for you, don’t be fooled into thinking it is that simple!
There are many good solutions out there that could help you to derive the benefits you most likely need to ensure a sound investment. They are most likely not all a good fit for your specific needs.
Effective due diligence will ensure you:
- Understand & document your strategy, objectives and success measures
- Understand ROI and path to value
- Create and execute an objective scoring model and selection process
- Draft, develop, issue, and manage your RFP
- Conduct software and implementation partner demonstrations
- Execute relevant site visits and comprehensive references
- Effectively negotiate vendor contracts
- Transfer significant knowledge to enable your implementation team
One extremely important point to note on your due diligence from above is to “Conduct software and implementation partner demonstrations”. These should be performed and scored against your objective criteria. Consider that your ERP software vendor may not be as well positioned/focused to deliver an effective implementation to align with your strategic goals, investment appetite and (often times most importantly), your culture.
Furthermore, consider wisely whether your ERP Selection partner should also be your ERP Implementation partner. We feel this is a significant conflict of interest and as a result, focus our ERP efforts on everything that comes BEFORE implementation (see above).
Time wisely invested up front will yield its value MANY TIMES during and long after an implementation. In fact, working with the right INDEPENDENT and OBJECTIVE advisory partner can pay for itself MANY TIMES over in the benefits they can bring to the table (that you may not if you attempt such an undertaking alone!)
With Meaningful Use stimulus funding mostly long gone (and EHRs now being optimized rather than implemented), and aging on-premise ERP solutions becoming more challenging to maintain and yield value from, expect organizations to focus over the forthcoming periods on providing enhanced benefits to their Finance, HR and Supply Chain teams.
Watch this space and expect even more competition as ERP vendors realize additional opportunities to listen to their ecosystems, and further invest in and refine their product offerings to meet their clients’ needs!