Spring Onsemble Conference: Gathering, Collaborating and Learning Virtually

Ashley Toy
May 26th, 2020

Earlier this month, members of the Onsemble Community gathered in a new way to collaborate and learn from one another. The first ever Virtual Onsemble Conference was held May 12 and 13, bringing the Community together even though they were apart. The conference included two days of educational sessions, along with remarks from the Advarra-Forte leadership team.

Introducing Advarra’s new CEO Gadi Saarony

To kick off the conference, SVP of Customer Relationships Carrie Nemke welcomed the audience, many of whom were new to the Onsemble Conference. The virtual experience helped bring the conference to a broader range of attendees, with over 1000 community members registering to attend.

Attendees also met Advarra’s new CEO Gadi Saarony. He shared his perspectives on the clinical research industry, and praised sites for the work that’s been done during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“What I want to highlight and say above all is thank you – not simply for your participation in this but for the work that you do every day,” Saarony said. “If you work specifically with COVID trials or not, you are helping to improve humanity, and to me, that is really admirable, and I want to sincerely thank you.”

Education designed for the Onsemble Community

Throughout the conference, presenters covered a variety of topics of special interest to the Onsemble Community. From training to finance, and integrations to regulatory compliance, presentations covered a broad range of subjects.

During the session “Ready, Set…Finance! Gamifying OnCore to Spark Understanding”, Kristen Matta and Julie Anthony of the University of Michigan shared how they made learning and comprehending complex systems and scenarios fun for users.

Presenters from the University of Colorado Anschutz Christine Ricklefs and Kirk Hohsfield shared “Optimizing Financial Builds for All Funding Sources”. They discussed how their organization uses a centralized OnCore financial build workflow, and standardized financial build process while maintaining consistency across their multi-institutional organization.

Navigating the impact of COVID-19 on research operations

Some of the hot topics of this virtual conference included how research organizations are handling the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on their research programs.

Denise Snyder and Catee Mullen of Duke University’s Office of Clinical Research shared their organization’s approach in the session “This is NOT Business as Usual: Clinical Research and COVID-19”. They shared more on how Duke has transitioned to conducting research remotely, and how they plan to scale their research operations back up as they begin to reopen.

When it comes to training during COVID-19, many organizations are struggling with the same issues. In the session “From In-Person to Online: Training Remotely during COVID-19”, speakers from the University of Florida and UCLA shared their tips for shifting to online training. Speakers gave ideas for how to ensure participants are engaged and absorbing information being presented to them.

Looking to the future, Advarra’s Wendy Tate and Joan Versaggi presented the session, “Clinical Research and the ‘New Normal’”, presenting ways organizations can bounce back and restart research safely and efficiently. They shared best practices and ideas for how Advarra can help organizations identify and address their needs.