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Feature: Driving health IT ROI with an electronic performance support system

Evidence is mounting that the training staff receive on major healthcare IT systems impacts on their deployment and adoption. Yet traditional classroom and e-learning won’t always provide what is needed.

NHS organisations can improve the operational efficiency of their training efforts and increase end-user proficiency by adopting an electronic performance support system (EPSS) that integrates with their EPR and delivers in-app support to people when they want it.

Now, independent research has reinforced the business case for adopting the best-in-class EPSS, uPerform from ANCILE Solutions: as EMEA sales director Jonathan Pascall explains.

NHS organisations can invest millions of pounds in electronic patient records and other IT systems. Yet deployments can fail and expected benefits can fail to materialise if staff are not engaged with them and effectively trained on them.

The KLAS Research Arch Collaborative, a provider-led effort to unlock the potential of electronic health records that works across ten countries, has found that the single, biggest predictor of how highly users rate their EPRs is how highly they rate the quality of the system-specific training they received.

Unfortunately, we know that NHS organisations can face significant challenges when it comes to delivering timely and effective training ahead of major system deployments. They may face a degree of resistance from staff who have been through implementations from which they have not seen any benefit, or who simply struggle to fit training into their busy work schedules.

Even when they attend traditional classroom training sessions, staff may be given the basics, handed a manual, or encouraged to take part in an e-learning course, in the hope that this will be enough to reinforce what they learned, sometimes weeks before a planned go-live.

Fortunately, we also know that a comprehensive electronic performance support system, such as uPerform from ANCILE, can have an immediate and demonstrable impact on the training that staff receive and so on the successful adoption of major IT systems.

Making the business case for an EPSS

A successful EPSS will include easy integration with an EPR system, so workflows can be recorded and turned into a range of training materials that staff can then access from within the EPR itself.

This saves time, reduces reliance on classroom training and additional support resources, and reinforces what staff have learned as they go about their work, day to day. To quantify these benefits, ANCILE worked with Hobson & Company, a research firm focused on return on investment and total cost of ownership.

Hobson & Company conducted six, in-depth interviews with US healthcare customers for uPerform, and then conducted an ROI analysis. It calculated that a healthcare network with 10,000 EPR users could expect to see a payback on the system in 7.8 months and generate an ROI of 397%.

Or, to put it another way, that customers saw measurable benefits, with a high return on investment, by addressing the challenges that they have in common with the NHS.

Increasing operational efficiency  

Specifically, Hobson & Company confirmed that uPerform can save time for authors and administrators. Creating a training course without an EPSS can be a time-consuming process that requires numerous recordings, documents and applications; all of which can be hard to maintain and use consistently.

With uPerform, screenshots, actions and keystrokes can be captured from within the targeted application. Recordings are held in a central database, from where they can be published in a variety of standardised formats, which can be easily updated if there is a system upgrade or other change.

The customers interviewed by Hobson & Company reported the potential for a 50% reduction in the amount of time spent authoring and administering content.

The researchers also confirmed that uPerform can reduce the need for, and so the cost of, instructor-led learning; by as much as 40%. And they confirmed that because uPerform enables staff to access training and learning materials from within the EPR, they can spend less time in classrooms and on e-learning courses.

The customers interviewed identified the potential for a 45% reduction in the time learners needed to be away from their jobs.

In addition, because staff can hit the ‘help’ button when they need it, customers identified the potential for a 40% reduction in the number of calls to help desks. One digital learning lead said: “We were having 4-5 training related calls a day, and now it’s down by half.”

Increasing end-user proficiency  

Most importantly, Hobson & Company looked at how an EPSS like uPerform can support staff engagement with and take-up of EPR systems.

Customers reported that staff are more likely to follow best practice and less likely to formulate their own ‘work arounds’. Yet, because it is easy to author content in uPerform, clinical enthusiasts and super-users can create their own materials and pass on tips and tricks.

Staff can also ‘sign up’ to their favourite content, and receive notifications about changes and new features, so they can train on them proactively. And some organisations have used uPerform to address the challenge of onboarding staff and locums, by giving them access to training materials before they arrive on site.

The customers interviewed reported that there is the potential for an increase in the adoption of mission-critical software each year. One said: “The biggest benefit to using uPerform is to be able to create… a proficiency continuum for your employees – you can take a user from a novice to an expert.”

Driving ROI through successful deployments and ongoing adoption

When IT leaders hear the words ‘learning’ and ‘training’, they may think that we are talking about something that does not affect them. However, it is clear that learning and training are critical to the successful deployment and adoption of major IT systems.

The Arch Collaborative argued that many current EPR challenges could be eliminated if health care organisations offered high-quality educational opportunities for their users; and that needs to mean using modern, digital solutions that work for staff in day to day care.

The research that Hobson & Company have done on uPerform shows that it can increase operational efficiencies, by reducing the amount of classroom and e-learning that staff need, reducing the time that educators spend creating engaging, high quality content, and cutting help-desk calls.

It also shows that investment in uPerform can deliver a payoff in terms of engagement and optimisation of those expensive and increasingly mission-critical healthcare IT systems. It isn’t possible to have your staff supported by floorwalkers or the IT training team 24/7 forever; uPerform may just be the next best thing.


Find out more: Contact Johnathan Pascall for a copy of the Hobson & Company report, and to get your own personalised ROI calculation.

Contact us: Jonathan Pascall, EMEA sales director


Phone: +44 7393 531 168


Further details if required




Address: 6-9 The Square, Stockley Park, Hayes, Uxbridge UB11 1FW, United Kingdom

About ANCILE Solutions: uPerform from ANCILE Solutions is used by more than 4,600 global customers, including half of the Fortune 100. uPerform drives user adoption of more than 200 of the world’s leading business and healthcare applications, through support for onboarding, continuous learning, process compliance and change management.