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3 July 2024

Delivery, delivery, delivery

Adam Chapman

In 2023, Clinisys delivered 467 UK go-lives to new and existing Clinisys WinPath and ICE customers; and is likely to exceed that in 2024. We talked to Adam Chapman and Steven Dexter about their work and what makes their teams so successful.

Q: Could you introduce yourselves and what you do?

Adam: “I am a programme director at Clinisys. I have worked in health tech for more than 15-years, and in my current role I work with new customers – trusts and pathology networks that are deploying net new LIMS and net new ICE and / or planning significant upgrades.

“They go through pre-sales and sales and then a review, to clarify their business strategy and what solutions they need and how we can best support them. Then, they go into a delivery environment, where an expert team of anything up to 154 people is assigned.

“After that, we move into project initiation, set-up, design and build, and user-acceptance testing, before we agree a go-live date, and support them on site as they transfer from the test to the live environment. Usually, we’ll stay on site for a week, before handing over to our support colleagues. So, the customer is never left alone. We go right through the process with them.”

Steven: “I am a programme manager for after sales. I manage a team of five project managers who deliver LIMS projects for our existing customers in the UK. The process is similar to the one that Adam described. Customers go through pre-sales and sales before being referred to me to assign a project manager.

“Project kick-off is followed by the agreement of a project initiation document, and then we undertake design and build and user acceptance testing and go-live, followed by early-live support and post go-live support. We work on a smaller scale than Adam’s team, in the sense that we work on smaller projects. But we also work on a bigger one, because of the sheer volume of projects. We have 161 projects in flight at the moment.”

Net new Clinisys WinPath go lives since 2022

Q: What sort of projects are you working on?

Adam: “From the net new perspective, customers might want to change a whole LIMS or add an additional site. Berkshire and Surrey Pathology Services is a good example. It was a joint venture between four NHS trusts and then it was joined by a fifth, and it recently upgraded all its sites to the latest version of Clinisys WinPath.”

Steven: “In after-sales, we see a wide range of projects that cover our entire product suite. We might be integrating Clinisys WinPath with a new analyser. Or extending ICE ordering and results to more wards. Or linking-in point of care testing devices. Or sorting out licensing and training. It might be new, it might be an upgrade or migration, it might be a combination of the two.”

Q: Why is Clinisys able to deliver so many projects, so successfully?

Adam: “The first thing is that a lot of our teams are experienced laboratory or ex-laboratory personnel, with a biomedical science background. They are hired for their expertise and their understanding of what is required to do the job from the customer perspective. Our customers get great support, because they get support from people with the right background.

“The second thing is that we surround our delivery with collaborative words: partnership, inclusivity, harmonisation. We want to make sure our customers understand that this is a partnership, in which everybody has a role to play, from the guy who hooks in an analyser to the microbiologist or clinical specialist learning a new system.

“If that’s people and process, then the third thing is technology. Our technology is always changing. We aim to have one major release per year, but in reality we are doing more than that and when we move onto the Azure platform, which makes development and fast paced changes easier. Other LIMS providers may not best equipped to provide this level of flexibility and responsiveness. We aim to be best in class: and we usually are.”

Steven: “I agree. From my point of view, the key thing is the BMS background, which enables us to deliver better customer service. Having joined Clinisys 10 years ago with a BMS background myself has greatly helped me personally in providing this better service to our customers and better understanding their requirements and constraints. I also believe that the strong governance we apply to our project management is respected and appreciated by our customers. When we talk to them, it’s clear that not all suppliers provide the same high levels of service.”

Q: How do long-standing partnerships help Clinisys and the NHS?  

Adam: “Let’s talk about Black Country Pathology Services. They came to us back in the day and said: ‘Can we have your LIMS, Clinisys?’ and we said: “Sure.” And now they are such close partners that they have informed our view of networks and our understanding of what good looks like.

“They run properly as a hub and spoke network. It is the same set-up in every lab. The equipment is all the same. So now, when they come to us and say: ‘Can we have this?’ whether that’s integration, or digital histopathology, or whatever, it is much easier for us to say: ‘Yes, of course.’ So, we understand a lot more about networks and they realise the benefits of new functionality to support even greater efficiency and quality.”

Q: Are there any trends in the projects that Clinisys is being asked to deliver?

Steven: “Digital pathology, or digitising the slides that are used in histopathology, so they can be viewed on a computer screen, instead of through a microscope. That’s very prominent across all of our programmes– net new LIMS and aftersales. It’s complex, and there are a number of ways to do it, but as far as customer care is concerned, it is near the top of the list.

“There are also lots of new networks and LIMS customers, and when we take them live, they become after sales customers. And as Adam says, there are always new products, and we need to promote them and deliver them. That’s why we’re working on more than 160 projects.”

Q: What benefits is delivery delivering?

Adam: “We are constantly delivering on customer needs. We have a comprehensive process in place, and it is working well and at scale. The work comes in, we do the work and it goes out, and the collaboration and close partnerships that we build with our customers are essential to keep that work moving.

Steven: “In the end, it is all about working with and providing better software and services for clinicians to ultimately provide better care for patients. If we can improve processes for laboratories, it will improve services for clinicians and patients. As we implement new solutions and release new upgrades and products, we build more benefits, and it’s that which sets us apart from other companies. Clinisys is a company with patient care at its heart.”

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