(On screen: Boosting Productivity Through Digital Technology Adoption)
(On screen: HealthConnect, a Canadian company that provides services to the pharmaceutical industry, started working with NRC-IRAP in May 2012 in order to implement a digitally-based knowledge management system to meet increasing demands in an international marketplace.)
(On screen: NRC-IRAP provided the support they needed to successfully integrate an electronic workflow management and performance system.)
(On screen: Here is their story.)
Al Pendergast: Now Health Connect has been in business for over 20 years. It started off as a very small consulting company providing project management services to the pharmaceutical industry and it has developed into a business of over 40 employees providing services to some of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. The issue that this business was faced with was the issue with regulations within the pharmaceutical industry. It had to adopt new digital technologies to ensure that it met the safety requirements that are required within the industry.
Courtney: Whenever we had a client request or a new project, unfortunately with the prior system that we had, it would take quite a while for the changes to take effect. It was complicated for our IT department programming wise. A lot of surveys, questionnaires, scripts, just the basic tools that they needed to do their job were stored on the server or even whether it was paper based…So that was becoming quite challenging for them. They needed something where they could have everything at their fingertips to do their job.
Al Pendergast: There are three things that we consider to be important in this exercise. The first is the modernization of this business was absolutely important for it to break through to the next stage of growth. Second, change management is critical in any program. I think from a lessons learned perspective, we learned a few change management lessons as you often do in projects of this size. Third, every initiative of this size needs to be managed as a project with very specific milestones, planned, tracked.
Courtney : The project implementation team was very important to the success of this project and just to ensure that we met the scope of the project and the timelines. It was a matter of juggling priorities, trying to make sure that we could still keep up with day to day operations. It is all about communication, communicating between the programmers, the account manager, myself, the project manager and ultimately getting input from the end users throughout the whole process.
Al Pendergast: There was a critical point in the implementation of the project. It was really right at the end of the design phase and before we started implementation that we took a sober look at ourselves. This business is a small company with not a lot of experience in implementing a new database infrastructure. So it was at that point that we engaged with an external consultant, a true expert, a person who had been through multiple implementations of new database technology and that was a critical success factor in this project.
Courtney: This new system has made jobs a lot easier. Now that we can get everything we need into one system, it improve efficiency. People get their jobs done in a much less complicated way. Ultimately, in the contact centre it is improving customer service tremendously.
Al Pendergast: The primary benefits today that we are seeing is first and foremost the compliance. It is an industry compliance solutions that is auditable to meet the requirements of the industry. The second is employee quality of work is facilitated through the use of the system. A big part of the implementation of the system is improving the time of implementation for new contracts. That is really one of the key components of this system and what we set out to do with the initial design. So for us, this system gives us the ability to do that. In fact, we are in the process of implementing a new client now in an implementation which would normally take us into the 60 day timeframe, it is taking us a 30 day window. And the clients require that, that is where the opportunity for us exists, being able to implement a new client in a more standardized fashion really enables us to have a market advantage.
(On screen: DTAPP was created as a pilot program to deliver support from November 2011 to March 31, 2014 and was delivered by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program)