Digital Health Implementation Playbook Step 3: Defining Success


Define what success looks like early. Once you’re aligned with your Core team on an overall vision for success, use this phase to set specific short-and long-term goals with measurable metrics and a process for tracking your progress to guide your team along the way.

Goals to accomplish

  • Research the types of results that are feasible with the solution you are considering
  • Identify 3–5 goals that are most important for your entire practice or organization 
  • Identify which metrics are most appropriate for assessing progress toward these goals
  • Ensure each goal is S.M.A.R.T. 
  • Set up a process or system to collect data and track progress against the goals above
  • Establish specific checkpoints to collect data
  • Set clear endpoint criteria to re-evaluate as needed or to scale the program
  • Plan for how and when you’ll establish baseline metrics as a comparison point for your program’s success

Why defining success important

Envisioning success brings clarity to the goal you are trying to achieve. This helps:

  • Identify the right vendors
  • Rally the team around a common goal
  • Bring rigor to tracking metrics

Best practice

Align your goals to the Quadruple Aim of Healthcare. By focusing on health outcomes, improving the patient experience, and reducing cost and/or increasing provider satisfaction, you will inevitably impact the end user, care team or patient in a positive way. These goals are also more likely to align with the strategic imperatives of your organization, which will be an advantage when seeking approval and resources later in the process.

Avoiding a misstep

Don’t skip this step! Failing to establish a clear vision for success and a way to measure progress can lead to confusion, the need for rework and frustration, which can ultimately jeopardize the fate of your implementation.

Quick tip

Missing media.

Practice spotlight

Amidst the many considerations associated with the implementation of digital health—patient privacy, clinical workflow, financial viability, etc.—it’s tempting to approach one step at a time, while neglecting to consider the larger picture. When executing a digital health solution in the treatment of diabetes and hypertension, the implementation team at Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin knew it was important to envision what success looked like upfront. Otherwise, they risked being derailed by several items, including how quickly to react to patient shared data, how to design and coordinate cross team workflows, as well as how to demonstrate the value of using the tool to patients. As a result of beginning with the end in mind, they now have promising data to demonstrate the benefit of digital solutions, which is encouraging patients and the organization to think beyond current care delivery models in favor of a more digitally enabled, patient centric approach.

–Implementation Team, Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin



Playbook: Step 3-Quadruple Aim Value

Playbook: Step 3-SMART Overview

Now that you have completed Step 3 in the AMA Digital Health Implementation Playbook, continue with Step 4: Evaluating the Vendor. You can also go back to Step 2: Forming Teams, or visit the playbook main page to review all 12 steps.

AMA Digital Health Implementation Playbook

Download the Playbook to review all 12 steps to implement and scale remote patient monitoring in practice.