Promoted: Why NHS Trusts get software procurement wrong


Dan Teare, Healthcare Sector Director at mpro5, discusses how the mindset for NHS Trusts and other organisations needs to change to truly embrace, and unlock, the benefits of digitalisation.

Digitalisation is a key objective for the NHS today, and new digital technologies are already helping NHS Trusts to work far more efficiently and smarter than ever before. But at both a Trust and national level, the relationship with software, its procurement and implementation, is strained and can often fall frustratingly short of the original vision.

NHS Trusts need to maximise their use of data: for reporting, to remain compliant, provide assurance, analyse and improve processes and to become more efficient and cost-effective. 

You shouldn’t be afraid to let software providers apply their creativity and expertise to your problem. Starting with a ‘baseline’ list of more than 100 requirements inevitably turns a procurement exercise into a scoping one. Procurement should be a problem and solution-led process in which you explain your pain points to service providers and then assess the strength of their proposed solution.

It is about finding a partner you can collaborate closely with and a platform that has built-in flexibility so that it can move as you move, when your requirements move, or when the legislation changes. None of this should ever trigger you into having to go and buy a new piece of software.

The key point to make is this: if your tech stack is flexible, then you should be able to address at least 90% of the problems thrown at you. The way to save money is to have a configurable solution engaged and embedded in the business: this way, you are already paying for the platform that can solve new problems as and when they arise.

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