How Does Clinical Trial Recruitment Software Work?

Clinical trial patient recruitment software can help trial sponsors and research sites connect with patients for clinical trials and track their enrollment into a study. Because clinical trial recruitment software is a relatively new piece of clinical trial technology, research sites and drug sponsors can take advantage of tech-savvy features that make it easier than ever to connect with patients for your trial.

Patient recruitment software comes in a few different formats. Some tools allow teams to track recruitment efforts run by an agency, which allows for analysis but not direct involvement in the campaign. Other tools, such as Antidote Base, are self-service platforms that give sites access to relevant health data points before inviting patients to a trial.

As your researching software options, consider the particular needs of your trial team, your existing software, and of course, your budget. We’ve outlined a few key questions to ask vendors for help choosing the right tool for your trial.

What to consider when choosing clinical trial recruitment software

As you consider your options, there are a few questions you can ask potential vendors to help choose the best software for your trial. Consider asking:

How does the software integrate with other clinical trial technology?

On average, clinical research sites use at least five pieces of technology to run a clinical trial, according to a survey conducted by Forte Research. Consider how your existing technology would work together with the trial recruitment software, and whether your new software could replace any of your current systems.

Where does the company find patients?

Some patient recruitment software options allow sites to choose patients to invite to your trial. Patients may come from digital advertising, through partnerships with the software company, through online searches, and via other channels. Knowing where patients come from for each tool can help you understand how knowledgeable patients may already be about clinical research and suggest how responsive they may be to your outreach. The quality of patient referrals makes a significant impact on trial timelines and budgets, so make sure you know where patients are coming from.

What support does the software team offer?

Is the recruitment tool self-service, or will your site have support from the company throughout your trial? You can also ask about the set-up process and whether you’ll need the support of your IT team for help integrating with other technologies and your initial setup.

How does payment work?

Many cloud-based software options today use a subscription model. Your site may pay for service for a full year, or from month to month. Other software options are pay-for-performance, asking for payment only when patients accept your invitation to your research site. Ask about the details of how payment works and if refunds are offered for low-quality referrals.

What does the software look like in action?

Most companies will offer to demo the software so you can get a sense of how it works for actual users. Watch to see how intuitive the tool is to use, what analytics the platform offers, and the specific information you can see about patients who are interested in your trial.