A few years ago, we transitioned our software engineering team to an agile software development method called Scrum. It was a huge change for us, but in essence it was designed to:
- Focus efforts on a single core product
- Ensure we innovate quickly, try out new ideas and test them rapidly
- Release a constant stream of upgrades of our Web and Patient Portal products to all clients every 90 days
- Respond quickly to marketplace input as technology and trends change
At the time I characterized the approach as “using software engineering as a competitive weapon,” and we’ve succeeded in doing exactly that, as evidenced by our win Tuesday night at the Technology Association of Iowa’s Prometheus Awards. We took home the 2009 “IT Innovation in Health” award for our patient portal product.
Scrum allows us to differentiate ourselves in a couple of intriguing ways.
One, we get to focus all our energy on our core platform, and are producing upgrades with amazing new features – not just regularly, but frequently and consistently. In fact, we’ve built one of the most advanced calendar of events on the market. We built our platform from the ground up, we have total control. We’re never at the mercy of some other vendor with conflicting priorities.
Two, since we’ve been on the same platform for more than 10 years, our clients don’t have to suffer through any painful transitions or upgrades. We built the most flexible, next generation platform on the market for a reason, and have spent years mastering it.
A competitive weapon, indeed.
We’ve built a great team, and a great product, and I’m excited to continue to win awards for our innovation in healthcare IT.