Vendor Management Services (VMS) – What’s in a name? [pt. 2]

VMS – Technology SolutionIStock_000004101627Small

Summary of Model:
The healthcare VMS – Technology Solution model refers to the delivery of a web-based software application for the purposes of empowering a client to manage the services of their suppliers in an efficient and controlled way.  Technically, this is the only model that should use the term VMS.  VMS Technology Solutions are delivered by Vendor Neutral, 3rd parties that are not owned, operated or managed by a staffing supplier.  Deploying a VMS Technology Solution is the only way a client can achieve true vendor neutrality.  Healthcare VMS companies may or may not offer multiple product offerings as well as a suite of services.

Services Offered:

  • Healthcare VMS systems may include such features as: job requisition management, credential management, interview scheduling, time keeping, invoicing, performance measures, notification systems and reporting.
  • Internal resources pool and employee self-scheduling/shift bidding applications.
  • Time tracking and attendance applications.
  • 24x7x365 live customer support.
  • On-site or web-based training.
  • Contract consolidation/management
  • On or off-site management.

Strengths:

  • Over 1500 hospitals nationwide have adopted the VMS Technology Solution, making this model more widely adopted than any other.
  • Direct client control and compliance assurance.
  • Automated efficiency.
  • Vendor neutrality.
  • Rapid implementation.
  • Aggregated data/reporting tools.
  • Decreased spending on outside suppliers.

Weaknesses:

  • Implementation and training of new technology system is required.
  • Potential resistance from suppliers to VMS fees and technology adoption.
  • Requires direct oversight, management and control by the client.
  • Some VMS companies compress or “set” rates for their clients. Such a service can provide the client with simplicity by having one set of rates and can potentially lower spending if the rates end up being lower overall.  However, such a practice has to be done skillfully and with much research.  If rates are set below what the market delivers the client can end up with insufficient staff or lose suppliers due to the ability of the suppliers to find market rates in other areas.

Opportunities:

  • Deploying technology as a service allows VMS companies to quickly adapt to market needs and take full advantage of new technologies in order to improve their existing and offer new applications. 
  • VMS companies in the healthcare industry have the luxury of learning from the successes and mistakes of VMS companies in other, more mature industries. 
  • Established healthcare VMS companies will be able to provide more insight on the industry as a whole to their clients, supplier partners and other industry participants.

Threats:

  • Healhtcare VMS companies face threats from new competitors offering newer technologies and from other software companies encroaching on their offerings, such as core scheduling companies offering internal employee self-scheduling and shift bidding. 
  • VMS companies must always be mindful of the reasons staffing suppliers resist participation and acceptance of a VMS system, as well as their ability to disrupt successful client adoption. 
  • Now that VMS companies have established themselves in the market it’s time to figure out which ones are here to stay. The companies that adapt to their client needs, work hard for the support and trust of their supplier partners and improve their product offerings by deploying new technologies will prove to be the leaders in this space.

List of companies that provide healthcare VMS technology solutions:
ShiftWise
Medefis
Symbio
Vendtegrity
eWork*
IQ Navigator*
People Click*
B-Line*
Field Glass*
Ringo*
Chimes*

*Not specific to healthcare

Related Posts:

Vendor Management Services (VMS) – What's in a name? [pt.1]

cforms contact form by delicious:days

9 thoughts on “Vendor Management Services (VMS) – What’s in a name? [pt. 2]

  1. Thanks for sharing this link Marc. These documents contribute greatly to this conversation.
    Being produced by the ASA, these documents are very much biased toward the supplier point of view. They place much more value on the MSP model (supplier driven) and omit many benefits a VMS company can provide a client.
    However, many of their recommendations are sound. Specifically, the recommendation that VMS companies use escrow accounts should be highly regarded.

  2. We use Vitalent VMS and have never had any problems. I was suprised to see they were not on the list of VMS Vendors. I would recommend them.

  3. Hi Jennifer, I’ve never heard of Vitalent. Thanks for bringing them to my attention. The VMS Technology companies I listed are those that work in the Heatlhcare Staffing Industry. Do you know if Vitalent has customers in this space? If so, I’d be happy to add them to the list. I went to their website but they didn’t list any healthcare clients.

Join The Conversation