After a busy period of working with our IT partners, New Signature, and establishing our online Microsoft collaborative workspace, we are pleased to report that we have successfully integrated the first six research groups into the BHF CRC online community. These research groups are representatives from the following specialist societies: British Society of Cardiac Magnetic Resonance, British Society of Echocardiography, British Heart Rhythm Society, Society for Cardiothoracic Surgeons, British Association for Cardiac Prevention and Rehabilitation and the Association for Inherited Cardiac Conditions.
It has been evident through the workshops that we have held with these groups over the last two months that the BHF CRC will be providing time to value for research development and a practical solution for the administrative overhead for these researchers who are already ‘time poor’.
The BHF CRC’s Microsoft 365 IT solution has been implemented to address one of the main barriers for coordinated research efforts which is the distinct lack of physical and virtual workspaces to collaborate and communicate but almost more importantly to store and share information in an efficient and secure manner.
The BHF CRC provides a phenomenally rich platform, predominantly through Microsoft Teams and SharePoint, which can be enabled anywhere, anytime and on any device and gives access to:
- Common collaboration: through simple co-authoring and sharing of information.
- Smarter meetings: meeting anywhere, anytime with tools to simplify ways to minute and record decisions, actions, and updates, such as meeting transcription services.
- Secure storage: provide document repositories that are accessible securely.
- Community: allowing researchers to find each other and knowledge intuitively.
Through these six bespoke workshops, delivered by the BHF CRC Core Team and New Signature IT consultants, members of the specialist research groups were able to witness first hand how this intelligent workspace solution will work for them and allow them to be integrated into the initiative in a quick and efficient manner. The Research Groups will now be allocated Microsoft 365 licences to give them the ability to incorporate all the rich and elegant functions that this platform provides into their daily clinical research work.
The key to modern research is collaboration and the BHF CRC have now taken the very important first steps in setting up an efficient online collaborative workspace and bringing the first group of clinical researchers onboard. We look forward to the coming months where we hope to see the tangible outcomes of these coordinated efforts in the shape of impactful research questions.