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Testing is essential for each aspect of any implementation. Testing technology is no exception. In the new virtual world, technology is being used in extended capacities. New systems and processes are being implemented both internally and with each client. Each system and process should be tested to ensure success and then built upon for further success. Do not underestimate the importance of testing technology.

The first step in this process is to review expectations. Asking questions, such as what would you like the technology to accomplish or how would you like the technology to accomplish the outlined task, will aid in the understanding of what is expected. Once the expectations have been reviewed, the technology capabilities should be considered and discussed.  The capabilities of the technology, or the limited capabilities, might hinder the ability to fulfill all of the expectations.  Therefore, this will lead to the discussions and decisions of the in-scope technology.

After the technology and scope have been decided upon, the second step is to start the internal testing.  This type of testing is to ensure the technology works as designed and as expected.  This testing must ensure the scope is represented within the limits of the technology.

Once the internal testing is complete, the third step is to test with the client.  Testing technology with the client has multiple purposes.  First, this will ensure the technology runs appropriately on the client-specific hardware devices.  Second, this testing will verify that the platforms are capable of supporting the technology to be used.  Next, this will confirm the software applications are compatible.  Finally, this testing will reinforce the scope and expectations.

When these four testing technology phases are complete, user access should be tested.  End-user access includes any system used to obtain help with the product being implemented.  These systems include applications such as an instant messaging application, the phone system to connect to resources that can aid in answering questions, or the issue ticketing system.  Many clients have these systems in place.  However, their intended use might change during the implementation.

Finally, the access for the support staff needs to be set up in the identified applications.  These applications are much like the end-users. However, they are used in a different function.  In order to start testing, the access requirements should be identified and gathered.  These requirements may include name, phone number, email address, or SSN.  Once the end-users are set up, each application should be tested with each support resource. This testing will ensure each resource has access to each application and the correct access within these applications.

In conclusion, testing technology is essential for a successful implementation.  Expectations, scope, and technology capabilities must be discussed and decided upon. Once these decisions have been made, the testing can begin. Testing should include internal testing and testing with the client. Once you’ve completed the testing technology, end-user and support staff access should be tested.  Each of these steps will support a successful implementation.

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Misty Bartz

Manager, EHR Delivery

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