The business requires alignment with the mission and objectives in order to attain a higher growth rate. The changing business environment and technological advancements enable the organizations to reduce cost of operations and provide quality services to their clients. The below sections are dedicated to establish a requirement for software acquisition in ABC home healthcare agency. The software is capable to provide advanced features for patient record management. The business can achieve its objectives through utilizing the capabilities of software. Improved service quality, customer satisfaction, and employee development can facilitate overall performance of the organization.
The ABC Home Care Agency is a healthcare services provider agency. The mission of the agency is to provide healthcare service to the patients in their home environment. The agency is operating in various states of United States and following their corporate principles of providing quality healthcare. The yearly growth of agency has not only provided business expansion opportunities but at the same time increase in staff including doctors, nurses, attendants, and administrative staff. The changing business and regulatory requirements need modernization in operations. Technology is also required to replace existing methods of record keeping and providing healthcare services. Advanced services oriented and patients centered approach is required to achieve higher service levels. The competitors are also adopting highly efficient and computer-based systems to increase market share. The large number of staff members and high growth in patient numbers can only be handled through effective communication and record maintenance. The issue was raised in annual general meeting and as a result the management has asked for report on the proposal.
Software Acquisition and its Benefits:
The manual record keeping and computer-based record maintenance systems have significant differences. There are various process adopted by the organizations to acquire software (Campos, Guerra, & Lancas, 2009). Some of them are described below to develop understanding of the issue. A process adopted by the businesses to assess their requirements and acquire software is denoted as software acquisition process. These needs are identified and assessed at internal levels and various options are discussed to analyze the appropriate option. The software acquisition is completed through various options as explained below.
The software available in the market is denoted as commercial off the shelf software (COTS). It is also noted that COTS software acquisition is handled through the internal staff of organization (Chemuturi, 2013). The first stage of software acquisition is accomplished through determining the internal system requirements and analysis of the available options. The business also prepares a document noting all the requirements and develops a request for proposal (RFP) as standard operating procedure. The vendors are required to quote in accordance with the software requirements and other related specifications documented in RFP. Later the best suitable software is selected on the basis of suitability and fulfillment of requirements.
The second popular category of software acquisition is through customization of the products. The identification and analysis of the requirements is handled according to the earlier defined processes. The customization of software is requested from software development organizations in order to fulfill specific business requirements. It is also essential for the companies dealing with business different from market and conventional practices. The customization of software requires additional cost and as a result the decision makers should also justify the benefits and return on investment. The third method usually adopted to acquire software products is through developing own system. The highly confidential and large business concerns adopt the process of developing their own products. The internal teams of the business or external services providers are required to fulfill the development of own software.
Capital Purchase of Software:
ABC Homecare Agency has adopted the option of acquiring COTS healthcare software used mainly by small to medium sized enterprises. The software should be aided by the database to store patient records and it should be accessible from the internal and external networks. The users of the software should be licensed and initially 100 users. The users can be increased through paying a negligible amount for increasing user's license (Bhogal, Grigsby, Peterson, & DeLuca, 2012). The initial cost of the software acquisition is estimated at $6,000 as well as including the software support for the company. The software will enable the agency to record its patient's history and treatment details. The software will also enable the agency to access customer records from any state using the provided access. The access levels are also defined in order to facilitate efficient handling of privacy information.
Management goals that expenditure would support:
According to Ward (2012) usual business expenses and capital investments are made to ensure that it achieves certain management objectives. Similarly the business investments made to improve operations and incorporate technology solution are also targeted at improving serviceability, productivity; provide quality, and employee development. Moreover all these functions combined it also helps the business achieve its profitability and increase revenues. The management of ABC home care agency has also set similar objectives for its capital investment. The business can achieve its goals through improving following critical factors.
The software will not only enable the agency to store patient information but at the same time the information regarding the patients care will also be stored. The complete record of the patient will enable the caregivers including doctors, nurses, and administrative staff to retrieve patient information when required (Venkatesh, Zhang, & Sykes, 2011). It will allow the management to offer similar treatment to patients without having to take risk in ignoring the previous data. The availability of services will also be improved and as a result the patient's satisfaction level will also be increased.
The capital investment in acquiring software to facilitate patient record keeping and retrieval of information for using when required will also increase employee productivity. The software is capable of handling shift and attendance records of employees. The time required to manually retrieve patient records will also be reduced through computer-based database storage of data (Eggers, Schlotterbeck, Vanderveen, & Coffman, 2010). The data retrieval and storage time will be saved including the functions available through software to intimate the company with respect to critical patient needs saved in accordance with the requirements. The modern healthcare systems provide various notable features that can enhance employee productivity. These features will also be available through the acquired system.
Quality assurance is critical measure for any business especially homecare organizations. The quality of service and providing similar standard of service to the patients can be achieved through recording patient's data. The data can be later accessed and analyzed to define certain quality related objectives. The quality objectives to provide timely services and maintaining of patient records for later assessment will affect service quality. The management can achieve its objective to satisfy its customers through quality of their services (Hernon, & Altman, 2010). The capital investment in software will impact quality goals and provide a reliable reference for its patients.
It is essential for any organization to focus its attention on human resources development and provide essential trainings to its employees. The skills development and trainings provided to the employees is also an added advantage for service oriented organizations. The business requirements for updated and progressive services oriented firm include a detailed understanding for employee development. The software also has module for employees and it can hold the history and record of employees including their performance appraisals and training needs.
According to Graban (2011) revenue improvement is one of the overall effects of customer satisfaction through quality services, increased productivity, and employee development. The organizational growth as a recognition for their quality of services results into satisfied customers and increases the probability of more healthcare consumers. The revenues of the agency are also increased and it the mission of any capital investment to raise additional profits and increase its customer base. The business is also benefited through expansion and broadening the revenue basis for the organization.
Economic environment of the organization:
The economic environment of the business is based on internal and external forces. The internal and economic environment of the business influences capital investment decisions. The relevance and magnitude of influence is however different based on the needs. The external economic environment of a business can be defined in terms of political, economic, social, technological, environmental, and legal aspects of the business. The internal economic environment of the business is related to the strengths and weaknesses of an organization. The capital purchases are also influenced by the economic forces in an organizational environment. It is also similar to the case of ABC home healthcare agency. The software purchase to record patient records will enable the business to reduce cost of operations and lead…