Success Factors

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Despite the many touted benefits of CPOE solutions, there appear to be only a handful of truly successful CPOE implementations in the United States. According to a report titled Health Information Technology in the United States: The Information Base for Progress.

The absence of widespread CPOE success warrants identification of factors associated with the minority of implementation success stories. Recognizing common denominators among such CPOE torch bearers shows that the following are some of the important determinants of success:

Physician involvement, empowerment, and championship as early as possible

  • It is recommended that a physician champion committed to the project’s efforts, one who is a trusted, clinically active, well-respected physician. 2
  • Successful implementations in the literature describe a physician team that is intimately involved with all steps of the system’s implementation. 2

Support from administration before implementation and well after go-live

  • Support from the highest executive levels is a necessity; management is obligated to “develop a clear vision of CPOE and address such issues such as (a) why do we wish to pursue this, (b) what do we expect to get out of it, and (c) how will we measure success”.2
  • End-user technical support and system customization are crucial at the outset during roll-out and ongoing well after go-live.2

An effective implementation team

  • Characteristic of CPOE success stories is the existence of an implementation team that spans various levels and departments as a reflection of the far-reaching effects of CPOE; teams are strengthened by the presence of a core group of administrators, physicians, nurses, and information services staff. 2

Analysis of technology, personnel/process, organizational, and cultural considerations prior to deployment

  • It is imperative that before undertaking any implementation, assessment be performed of how CPOE will impact current work processes as relates to working relationships, ancillary system use/integration, and organizational culture. 2


  1. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and National Coordinator for Health Information Technology: joint project. Health Information Technology in the United States: The Information Base for Progress. September 2006. Report online. Available at

  1. Sengstack, PP and Gugerty, B. CPOE systems: success factors and implementation issues. Journal of Healthcare Information Management. 2004 Winter; 18(1):36-45.