How to Maximize Software Adoption—and Your Investment

Let’s get real. Software (even the most powerful) is a tool, but it can also be a solution—and that depends on adoption because it’s the PEOPLE using it who make it a solution. 


Therefore, understanding adoption rates and why they matter to return on investment, will help you ask the tough questions. Always consider implementation and rollout success as part of the software journey. Ensuring your software partner has a plan for (and proven success in) driving high adoption rates can ensure you achieve them—and create return on investment. Here is what you need to know.  


Why high adoption rates matter


#1. Adoption unlocks efficiency. 

If software is a tool, it should be a tool that helps your teams work smarter. With remote work and the need for agility, this is more important than ever in every organization, including in orthopedics manufacturing and distribution. Putting your finance and sales operations teams and your field reps on the same system can help reduce bottlenecks and automate repetitive and time-consuming processes like sales orders and emails about inventory shipments. It also gives everyone access to the same source of truth in real time, helping people focus on doing what only people can do. 


This means your sales force can spend more time building relationships, pursuing new contracts, and closing more sales, rather than wrangling inventory. It means your operations team can spend more time solving problems, and less time putting out the daily fires of chaos and answering routine questions (Did my stuff ship? What is the price for x, y, or z?). 


#2. Adoption reduces errors—and risk. 

Digital tools enable greater accuracy by reducing human error that arises from data entry and manual processes. This can cut down on the typical frictions between teams—things like dealing with pricing discrepancies, recalls and chain-of-custody crises, or handling angry accounts because someone was promised a kit but it’s not there, and now surgery can’t take place. 


High adoption rates are the path to realizing the promise of automation and enabling real-time inventory visibility, which can change how your teams work—for the better. 


#3. Adoption improves visibility. 

Field inventory can be a real challenge in orthopedics. According to our data, many orthopedics manufacturers have up to 70% of their inventory in the field at any one time. It can be incredibly challenging to match demand and supply without having everyone—including the field—on the same system, because of lack of visibility. With the right system, everything changes, enabling a transformative level of field inventory visibility that cuts down on inventory wrangling, streamlines communications between sales ops and the field, and elevates customer service. The key factor? That high adoption rate—everyone has to be using the system to realize its benefits. 


#4. Adoption is connected to business performance. 

With a high adoption rate, your team gets more out of a system, pushing toward that holy grail of efficiency. Working smarter can enable innovation that ultimately drives better performance, customer growth, and improved financial performance. This can mean not only a higher return on your technology investment, but on both the top and bottom line. 


Ensuring a high adoption rate

Now that you know how critical a high adoption rate is, it’s important to consider how to encourage it. High adoption rates don’t achieve themselves. Best practices for rollout, communication, and training go a long way toward fostering high adoption rates. 


Equally important is having a partner who has been through it, seen everything that can happen, and helped deal with the inevitable objections to change. 


As you’re considering potential software investment—and potential vendor partners, consider asking questions during the demo and sales process like: 

  • What is your adoption rate? 
  • How do you structure rollouts? 
  • Are they phased? 
  • Do you use incentives for field rep adoption? If so, what has been successful?  
  • How would you approach the rollout for my organization? What’s the timeframe? 


Want to know ImplantBase’s adoption rate? Glad you asked—it’s 97%. We work with some of the largest orthopedic manufacturers and bring experience in structuring rollouts to guarantee success among back-office teams and field reps. Download our Tactical Guide to Distributor Adoption.


Implementing ImplantBase is the fastest, most effective way to enable real-time data, visibility, and inventory control. ImplantBase is orthopedic-specific, and is designed exactly for how your teams work together—finance, sales operations, supply chain, and field reps. Our mobile app provides on-demand, real-time access to inventory, data, and processes to bring the field to you—and your teams together. Orthopedics is our entire focus, and we’re constantly working on new developments and enhancements to help you navigate changes in the market and your business, so you can be proactive.  


Ready to learn more? Schedule an assessment with our team to talk about ImplantBase, and how it can help you access better data in real-time. 


Note: A version of this blog originally appeared on June 27, 2019. It has been updated and lengthened. 

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