Stay on top of training

Friday, July 31, 2009

Q. Am I getting the maximum performance from my HME software?

A. Many individuals and companies purchase software of all sorts and never take the time to learn all of the features or functions. Needless to say, the software never gets set up in a way to maximize its use. Even if set-up is thorough and complete, the on-going training of the staff using the software falls short, resulting in all sorts of problems.

In the 1980s and 1990s, all HME software was server-based and required expensive user licenses and extraordinary upfront costs for the hardware and software. Most software vendors included a week or so of free training, either at the customer’s site or at their facility. This training allowed companies to understand the software and its capabilities and allowed the software vendor to understand the customer to better direct them on how to “build” the system. The problem: That was years ago. They haven’t invested in renewed training or taken the time to learn new features.

In the 21st century, technology has shifted toward Web-based software in many industries. There is very little upfront expense and the server and data is housed at a software vendor’s site. Because companies are trying to save every dollar that they can, the minimal upfront investment into the Web-based software is very appealing. The problem now: Companies aren’t willing to spend the extra money to have the training that is necessary to properly implement the new software and to use it with maximum efficiency.

Almost every HME business that I talk with is unhappy with their software, regardless of of vendor. Upon investigation, very few read vendor newsletters and updates; they rarely participate in free or paid Webinars; and they haven’t received follow-up training in years. Training is absolutely critical to maximize your HME software.

Michael Tracey is president of Mike Tracey Consulting, LLC. Reach him at 920-493-5121 or