What’s A Conference Room Pilot?

verb. Conference Room Pilot (CRP) is a term used in software procurement and may be used during the selection and implementation of a software application in an organization. The purpose of the conference room pilot is to validate a software application against the business processes of end-users of the software, by allowing them to carry out typical or key business processes using the new software.

Try Before You Buy

As a digital health provider, offering a new SaaS product to hospital NICUs, Keriton’s remit is to convey the value and return on investment (ROI) of a Keriton installation to the key stakeholders. The best way to do this is to allow our prospective customers a hands-on demonstration of the software platform, where the demo environment is simulated, as closely as possible, to their live clinical setup. Customers should be able to test their specific use cases and truly evaluate whether the product will work for them.

In a traditional on-premise software installation, a limited scope pilot was often run for customers to assess the product. The full (production) version of the software would be set up for the customers to evaluate either a subset of their users or use-cases. In a hospital environment, this could be a subset of the beds and/or a subset of the nurses.

Why Limited Scope Pilots Fail In Healthcare

Keriton followed this ‘standard’ approach by offering early customers a limited-scope pilot. However, after conducting 2 limited-scope pilots at Penn Medicine, we realized there are many shortcomings to this approach.

  •  Since nurses assignments change often (day-shifts, night-shifts, per-diem assignments, weekend assignments), we ended up training 100% of the staff, despite the limited scope. This was an extremely inefficient use of precious nurse time away from the bedside.
  •  The staff then did not get to continuously use the Keriton platform, due to differing assignments, and by the time they got re-assigned to one of the pilot babies, they were out of touch with some/most of the Keriton training, resulting in a disengaged end-user audience.
  •  Nurses were expected to proficiently execute the ‘old’ and ‘new’ workflows simultaneously (as some babies were on the Keriton platform, while most were not), which lead to increased confusion in a critical care environment.
  •  The whole point of the pilots was to evaluate the system in live clinical setting and a limited scope pilot was just not concentrated and thorough enough to highlight the different value propositions of a platform like Keriton Kare.

In a high-intensity environment as a NICU, conducting a limited scope pilot, say 10 out of 30 beds, was not in the best interest of any of the different stakeholders.

Hence, we are now promoting the time-proven concept of a Conference Room Pilot, a concept I became familiar with during my time at SAP – one of the largest enterprise applications organization.

Go-Live Without Going-Live

The idea with a Conference Room Pilot is to provide our prospective hospitals a live testing environment of the Keriton Kare platform – within their clinical setting, with their clinical configuration, without disrupting their day to day patient care.

Conference room pilots also provide unique and valuable insight into future end-user satisfaction. Collaborating with end-users in the pre-selection phase leads to a highly engaged and receptive audience during change management, thus positively impacting adoption rates, return on investment (ROI), and overall success of the implementation.

This is what a typical conference room pilot looks like –

  •  We block a conference room at your site for 4-6 hours and set up a NICU-like-environment with baby dolls, milk bottles, printers, scanning devices, etc.
  •  The Keriton Kare platform is pre-populated with your NICU specific settings (which we ask for in advance) like milk expiration times, fortifiers, donor banks, etc. to simulate real clinical scenarios.
  •  Activities are fast-forwarded to fit 4 days worth of tasks in 4 hours like feeding a baby every 3 minutes instead of 3 hours.
  •  Nurses, lactation consultants, nurse managers, IT/IS members are all invited to participate in the simulation.
  •  The Keriton team gets to observe your workflows and fit any tweaks before the actual go-live.

The above setup allows us to take different members of your team – from nurses to lactation consultants to nurse managers to IT/IS folks – through the entire experience of using the different modules of the Keriton platform, in a relatively short span of time, without spending an arduous amount of time on either side.

During the conference room pilot, Keriton trainers provide a hands-on overview of the system and respective workflows and the end-users fully test the system to evaluate its applicability for their NICU tasks. The clinicians get to use the system, and we get to showcase the capabilities of our comprehensive offering while collecting critical information for an actual go-live (viz training requirements, integration needs, etc) – win/win!

This allows our stakeholders and executives to make a well-informed decision regarding Keriton’s value and ROI for their hospital.

Introducing an enterprise-wide workflow product is never simple, there are far too many decisions that impact vendor selection – product offering, solution design, customer support and change management to name a few. A conference room pilot helps us help you make the right decision!

Interested in a Conference Room Pilot – we are happy to set one up. Register Here!