If you’re reading this and are still at the stage of wanting to get your Epic certification then let me clue you in now… I’ve been certified for a while now and been part of multiple Epic implementations and builds, and probably like you, I thought getting my Epic certification was the major mountain I had to climb.
No… Not quite… Getting certified is really only the very beginning.
Don’t get me wrong, the certification process IS rigorous but now I’m in the throes of everyday life as an Epic analyst and I’m finding that the learning curve isn’t getting any less steep and there truly is always something new to learn. That’s just the nature of building software that humans are going to have to use.
What Does A Typical Day Look Like?
Picture it… If something goes wrong with your computer at work, what do you do? You call the help desk right?
Well guess what…
That’s right… You’ve gone from person-with-a-problem to problem-solver. And you have to be a good problem-solver.
Do I always have the answers to their questions and the right fixes to their tech issues? Absolutely not, but I’ve learned how to investigate and troubleshoot.
As an Epic analyst, you learn how the software is supposed to work so that when it doesn’t work the way it should you can work backwards to figure out what in the process is amiss and where the breakdown is. Then and only then can you begin to find a solution to your end-users’ problem.
But let me keep it absolutely real.
In an ideal world your end-users would be waiting quietly and patiently while you try to to figure out how to fix the problems they’re having. Unfortunately, the world we live in cannot be described as “ideal” and the pharmacists and pharmacy technicians who will be using your Willow software have work to do…
So getting stuck or slowed down by tech problems gets them tense and in turn gets you tense until it’s fixed.
At my hospital, problems are reported by the pharmacy staff either by phone, calling the help desk, email, or a nice fancy electronic ticketing system.
The help desk triages the problem and assigns it a priority level so when I look in my problem queue I’m able to determine which problems are most urgent and need my immediate attention and which ones I can afford to leave on the back burner for a while and get to later.
So a typical day consists of working my way through the reported problems and fixing them. Some can be fixed quickly and some not-quite-as-quickly.
Then just rinse and repeat and do the same thing all over again.
The nice thing though is that just when you get used to solving one kind of problem another comes along that you have to learn how to fix. If you’re the sort that doesn’t like getting into a hum-drum routine then you’ll really like that part of the Epic analyst job.
Thanks a bunch to everyone who follows this blog and to those who send me questions to answer. Your questions help me address issues that others might be facing with respect to getting into the field of being an Epic pharmacist.
If you haven’t yet had a chance to see the questions I’ve been asked and the answers I gave, you can check them out here.