This three part blog series explores how to choose the right partner for your digital transformation journey. The previous blog talked about what a digital partner can offer: here covers the steps involved on the digital transformation journey.
Working with a partner to support the path to laboratory digitalization brings many benefits compared to going it alone. As well as offering a comprehensive, fully managed solution, a partner acts as a trusted advisor — and their change management strategies enable teams to get the most out of the new capabilities.
A quality partner will ensure strategic focus and a sustainable roadmap to ensure that the new solutions deployed and adopted set the customer’s laboratory up for long-term success. One may be ready to look for — or even start — a digital partnership, but what exactly does the journey to Lab 4.0 look like? This blog, breaks down what to expect from a partnership, and how to implement the right solutions to enable digital transformation.
What to expect from a partner
Digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. A partner, therefore, should be looking to deliver a solution rather than simply implement a product. A good partner will focus on three key areas to help the customer realize their digital transformation aspirations:
- Robust business analysis to identify key problems to solve that drive clear outcomes
- Well architected solutions to maximize business and end-user impact
- Project and engagement management to plan and deliver on-time, on-budget
Further, the customer should expect their partner to deliver projects in a way that suits any individual needs, instead of a one-size-fits-all approach. Thermo Fisher Scientific, for instance, can offer both full solution implementations, where the project work is completely managed and delivered for the customer, or a tutorial approach, in which key customer representatives are trained, enabling the organization to take on more of the solutions configuration and deployment. The latter option is particularly useful if superusers need to gain experience in configuring the solution and modules.
Lastly, to ensure the project runs smoothly, the partner should assign a qualified Project Manager (PM) to oversee the process. Thermo Fisher Scientific has an ISO 9001 certified Quality Management System (QMS), meaning the customer can expect consistent procedures and support across the board over the entirety of the long-term partnership. Let’s look more in-depth at the stages of project delivery, using Thermo Fisher Scientific’s processes as an example.
The road to success in six steps
Regardless of the industry or the solution to be implemented, most projects involve similar steps. Thermo Fisher Scientific runs projects in six main stages: Initiation – Workshop – Build – User Acceptance Testing/Validation phase – Go Live – and Project Close:
After an initial discussion on stages of delivery and resource expectations, a team is assembled, and a technical lead/solutions architect assigned to support the PM. Next, a kick-off meeting between the customer and Thermo Fisher Scientific will ensure the project teams and wider stakeholders are aligned on expectations. Discussions are focused on the desired outcomes, ranging from basic lab changes to more comprehensive business transformation, depending on where the customer is in their digitalization journey.
2. Workshop phase
During this stage, the project team works with the Thermo Fisher Scientific team to confirm requirements and ensure clarity heading into the build phase of the project, where the solutions will be configured. Workshops enable prototyping of potential design ideas, allow for quick feedback and the opportunity to make desired adjustments before heading into more comprehensive solutions development. Requirements documentation is finalized, and project plans updated.
3. Build phase
Thermo Fisher Scientific takes an agile, iterative approach to solutions configuration. Through regular stand-up meetings, JIRA/Kanban boards, other agile techniques, as well as regular demo/feedback sessions, the Thermo Fisher Scientific team ensures that users can review the configured solutions and provide input to make any required tweaks before the solutions are finalized. This approach avoids expensive rework and ensures cumulative build of the overall solution.
4. User acceptance/ Validation phase
As the overall solution takes shape, Thermo Fisher Scientific supports customers in preparing test scripts and validation requirements, if needed, and subsequently remains available to answer questions and provide support as they go through User Acceptance Testing (UAT). The result is a signed-off system that is ready for production deployment.
5. Go Live phase
Activities start to ramp up for the go-live event, including refresher training for superusers if needed, end user training, deployment planning, and dry runs. On completion of these steps, the system is deployed into production and made available to the business. Importantly, at this stage, the Thermo Fisher Scientific PM facilitates formal introduction and handover to the Thermo Fisher Scientific technical support desk. Members of the Thermo Fisher Scientific project team remain available through an agreed upon hyper-care period, post-go live.
6. Project close
To wrap up, Thermo Fisher Scientific hands over all relevant documentation and works with the customer to get sign-off on delivery to close the project.
Expert guidance on new journeys
A trusted partner brings competence, knowledge, expertise, and security to the digital transformation journey, enabling delivery of the customer’s desired solutions. Most projects delivered by a partner can be broken down into the six simple steps above, highlighting exactly what to expect. Thermo Fisher Scientific offers complete solution delivery, expertly navigating the customer through the right approach for their ecosystem to help achieve value from any informatics investment.
Read an example of how Thermo Fisher implemented informatics solutions to connect the scientific ecosystem at a top 20 pharmaceutical organization, and tune in to the next blog explaining why it is crucial to choose a partner who delivers scale at speed, globally.