View from the Bridge

Will your ERP enable the business transformation you need?

Should we stay the course or revisit what’s available in the market? Is it time to migrate to the cloud? Can we keep cobbling together a lot of bolt-on solutions and make it work? Is this an investment we can afford? Are we ready to make it a priority? Is it time for business transformation?

These are just some of the questions healthcare organizations are asking as they consider their Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) strategy. After decades of focus on Electronic Health Records (EHR), health systems of all sizes have or are turning more attention to their ERP solution(s).

ERP solutions have evolved significantly and can help healthcare organizations transform both clinical and business operations in the areas of Human Capital Management, Financial Management, and Supply Chain.  Choosing the right system from the right vendor to meet the specific needs of the organization provides a strong foundation for operational excellence with positive, improved clinical and financial returns.

The ERP investment is far less than the EHR investment in both time and money. But the ERP impacts every employee in some way when you consider the HR modules that support recruitment, benefits administration, training, performance management, and of course employee self-service.

The executive sponsors for an ERP initiative should include senior leaders from human resources, finance, and supply chain. To maximize the investment, leaders must work closely together as an executive team to understand the key drivers and requirements in each other’s domains and prioritize an integrated transformative approach for the organization.

The number of IT staff supporting these functions is typically small in comparison to the EHR team. Leveraging external help, on both the business side and the IT side, is likely necessary and healthcare industry domain knowledge and experience are key.

Because of the high degree of complexity of the products, it is extremely helpful to follow a structured selection methodology.  In selecting a vendor, significant consideration needs to be given not just to current features and functions but also to other critical factors, e.g., workflow, flexibility, difficulty of implementation, product roadmap, support options, impact on IT staffing, and costs.

Our advisors have decades of experience with the major ERP vendors across the entire system lifecycle including but not limited to strategy development, planning, selection, contract negotiation, implementation, and optimization.  As IT leaders in provider organizations, we have done literally dozens of vendor selections and lived with the consequences of our decisions and implementations.  We are extremely well-positioned to provide insights, ask tough questions, press for answers, and serve as an advocate and intermediary with potential vendors.

StarBridge Advisors has the experience and knowledge to ensure your health system maximizes its efforts to transform into a digital health system using the ERP as an enabler.  We are ready to partner with you and your team on your ERP journey.

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