Plan and Prepare

Program implementation preparation will ensure a smooth roll out. This stage considers logistics, development of documentation, timelines and communication plans.

Logistics, guidelines and resources

All logistics, guidelines and resources found in this toolkit need to be reviewed and potentially adapted for your organisational context and identified audience needs or preferences.

It is recommended to reach out to your Corporate Services team (or similar) to understand any organisational policies that are in place that may impact the running of the program.

The project team needs to review all areas, and it is recommended to get these then approved by the governance group.

All areas to be reviewed include:

Logistics and model

  • Number of participants involved – it is recommended to start with smaller numbers for your first program and then increase.
  • Feasibility of the time commitment for scientists and clinicians involved.
  • Structure of timetable to suit all parties (clinical areas, clinicians and finally scientists).
  • Flexibility of timetable - unfortunately, since you will be working with real patients and clinicians, changes can occur at the last minute and the timetable will most likely need to be changed. Ensure you are up front with scientists that this is a possibility, just to set the expectation.
  • Program elements on offer - this needs to be tailored to the services that your organisation offers, and which areas agree to participate.

Guideline documents

  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Summary of key activities
  • Pre-briefing and debriefing recommendations
  • Privacy and confidentiality
  • Issue resolution and escalation
  • Evaluation

Internal Corporate procedures

  • Organisational policies (eg addressing patient privacy and confidentiality, organisational consent process)
  • HR requirements (eg immunisation requirements for entering the clinical environment)

Project plan and timelines

Understanding what program activities need to happen, when and by who, is an essential aspect of project management to ensure progress and success.

Organisations often have their own project planning documentation which may be required to be complete. However, if not, a simple Gantt chart stepping out necessary steps and assigning a party responsible is a helpful planning tool to ensure the program keeps to scope, budget and time. 

A list of key steps/activities will have come from the comprehensive review of logistics, guidelines and resources.

Gantt chart templates can be accessed via SmartSheet, Office 365 and a simple Google search.

Communications Plan

A communications plan is recommended to assist the group to agree on key messages of the program and understand the communication channels that should be utilised to reach the target audience.

Communication will be most important in engaging the scientists and clinicians to participate in the program. The program governance team should be able to utilise their knowledge and networks to identify the appropriate channels to use.