On-demand service models deliver goods and services directly to customers when they need them, incurring costs only when the good or service has been delivered. This model is made possible by technology, typically web-based solutions that provide integrated connectivity, automated workflows, and delivery and support management. Examples of this model include ride-hailing applications, food delivery services, and home services like cleaning and handyman projects.
On-demand service models may be used in a variety of clinical trial contexts, including:
- Patient recruitment: drop-shipping items like study materials and screening kits, or arranging transportation to a local research site.
- Patient retention: patient convenience coordinators can provide on-demand support upon enrollment and for subsequent visits. Travel can be booked once appointments have been scheduled.
- Logistics: medication delivery and sample collection could be done at patients’ remote locations using on-demand shipping and courier services.
- Clinical trial personnel: CRAs, monitors, interpreters, and home health personnel often operate as contract labor and could be engaged on an as-needed basis.
Ensuring quality in on-demand service models can be difficult, but here are some ideas:
- Creating clear standards: making sure that service providers are aware of the performance and quality expectations for them might help. For instance, measures that take into account how quickly a good or service is delivered.
- Performance monitoring and tracking: Monitoring and tracking service providers’ performance on a regular basis can assist pinpoint areas that want improvement. Create financial models that encourage suppliers to provide the best service possible at a fair price and allow them to compete in the market. It is usual for a provider to be doing well one day and worse the next. On-demand approaches provide nearly infinite scalability and plug-and-play integration of new suppliers.
- Use of Technology: assists in tracking performance and guaranteeing the quality of service delivery. Examples include real-time monitoring of service delivery followed by satisfaction queries and reporting.
- Providing Feedback: regular feedback for service providers can help them perform better and meet the criteria set by the Sponsor.
- Regularly evaluating service providers: customer feedback and performance metrics can help distinguish between those that regularly give high-quality service and those who do not.
- Compliance and regulations: in an on-demand model, each individual supplier is responsible for their own area of expertise, and maintaining compliance within their own area. Overarching strategic supplier programs own due diligence, supplier training, data privacy and processing requirements.
These tactics can help ensure that the good or service is of a high standard, that service providers are aware of the value of offering high-quality services, and that Sponsors have the option of promoting or demoting a supplier based on performance.