Rely on Agile Development for a Happy Nurse New Year

Rely on Agile Development for a Happy Nurse New Year

Elizabeth Hanes, RN, BSN
Health & Medical Writer

As a CNO or nurse manager, you may not sit around thinking about agile development (an approach to software development under which requirements and solutions evolve through the collaborative effort of cross-functional teams and customer feedback). It’s a concept that applies to software, and during your hectic day you likely don’t devote one neuron to thinking about how your hospital’s software works. All you might care about is whether it works.

So here’s a question: do your organization’s software products work? Do they truly meet your needs on a day-to-day basis, or do you and your staff find yourselves frequently devising work-arounds to cope?

Why Agile Development Matters to CNOs and Nurse Managers

As hospitals have transitioned to paperless systems for everything from patient records to nurse scheduling, they have had to rely on various software products. Problem is, these products often require your staff to learn entirely new ways of doing things. Instead of the software program flexing to meet your needs, you must flex to do things the way the program requires it. And sometimes you discover after making a large investment in the product that it can’t actually do what you said you needed it to do.

That sort of product-first mentality can lead to frustration and a lot of wasted time. How much time? Well, here’s a true story that drives home the point.

ShiftWizard recently met with a prospective client to demo our nurse scheduling software. That client had originally chosen a scheduling software made by a “big name brand.” The brand’s software package did not include a report the CNO desired, so the salesperson promised the developer would create that report especially for the client and integrate it into the package after the sale.

Seven years later, that client was still waiting for its custom report from the “brand name” software developer. ShiftWizard, on the other hand, designed and coded the CNO’s custom report and demoed it for her in two days.

In two days, ShiftWizard accomplished what the big name vendor couldn’t deliver in seven years. Should you really have to use work-arounds for seven years? You don’t have to when your software vendor uses agile development.

Agile Software Development Means No Waiting for the “Next Update”

The issue of customized reports or software features is one thing, but how many times have you begun to use a new software program only to discover it contains several little “glitches” that prevent it from working correctly? Often, if you contact the developer you’re told they’re planning to address that “in the next software update.” Sound familiar? But when, exactly, will that update be forthcoming? Because you need the software to work right now.

ShiftWizard doesn’t believe you should have to wait months or even years for the company to push out a system-wide “update” that addresses issues you’re having with the product. Instead we make sure the software is glitch-free to start with, and then we use agile development processes to customize the software to meet your needs.

Maybe you will like the way our nurse scheduling software performs right “out of the box.” Terrific! But in a few months, it’s possible your staff will point out some feature or report that could work even better with a tweak here and there. That’s when you’ll appreciate agile development. We’ll work with you to adapt the software to your organization’s specific needs instead of telling your staff they need to adapt to the way our software works – or wait for the “next update.”

Enjoy a Happier, More Productive New Year

When your software tools work the way you need them to, you save time, frustration – and money. By transitioning to nurse scheduling software that uses agile development principles, you and your staff can enjoy a much happier, productive and stress-free new year. And the path starts with a simple phone call to schedule a no-obligation demo.

 

Healthcare Staff Scheduling. Developed by Nurses for Nurses.

ShiftWizard makes nurse scheduling and communication easy, so you can focus on what really matters---improving patient outcomes.