Jun 23, 2023
By Sarah Czarnowski

How Organ Procurement Organizations Can Improve Their Operations

For many people, organ procurement organizations (OPOs) are simply a gift. They are the center of countless second-chance stories, and their reach into our community goes far beyond the visible acts associated with organ transplants. Many supply the very tissues that contribute to the life-saving advancements being made in the biotech space.

Behind these incredible stories lies a complex world that most do not see. OPOs operate in a unique place where they are part-healthcare provider, part pharma/biotech company, part tissue bank, and part miracle workers, and the regulations, standards, and budgetary constraints they work within are daunting.

Some OPOs purely manage the organ procurement process. Others look to supplement their toplines by providing biotech companies with precious cells and tissues to help researchers find treatments for diseases and help patients in need of specific tissue. While each OPO operates in a unique way, they all have noble goals—trying to match as many patients as possible to life-saving organs and tissues. Adopting new technology is one way to accomplish these goals, while driving efficiency, improving operations, and reducing compliance risks.

We experienced this firsthand by working with LifeNet Health, a non-profit global leader in regenerative medicine and the world’s largest provider of allograft bio-implants and organs for transplantation. Their team understood that optimizing efficiency across the organization was critical to achieving its mission of saving lives, restoring health, and giving hope to recipients, donors, and their families.

Because of this, they decided to invest in technology to improve its processes. Its legacy system of using spreadsheets and disparate software resulted in potential compliance risks and an inefficient way of coordinating both internal and external teams to support its diverse assets and facilities, including office space and laboratories.

LifeNet Health chose to work with Nuvolo after researching different integrated workplace management systems (IWMS) due to our experience with both healthcare systems and the life sciences industry. IT was able to streamline facilities management for its the conventional office needs (like key cards, light bulbs, office equipment, and HVAC systems), while also managing more complex, regulated assets (such as allografts, freezers, and refrigerators), all from one platform.

“We were looking for the right tool that checked two key boxes: asset management for GxP environments and an easy user experience,” said Brendon Fahl, Vice President, Corporate Support and Procurement, at LifeNet Health, “While several tools in the market addressed our first need, most were very complex to use and did not allow for easy customizations. Nuvolo was the only one that offered both, plus it easily connected to our ServiceNow platform, which plays into our future strategic goals.”

Use Cases

This OPO had unique business uses in mind when implementing its new system, with their main focus on two things: 1) tracking and coordinating maintenance work across different types of assets; and 2) understanding the total cost of ownership to make more informed decisions on asset lifecycles. Here are some improvements being made:


Solution Before After
A Light Bulb Is Out
  1. A lightbulb goes out in the office
  2. While many people notice it, there is no easy process for reporting the issue
  3. A few days later, an office manager is finally alerted via email
  4. The office manager forwards the email to the Facilities team
  5. The Facilities Manager creates a work order in their own system and assigns it to a general queue
  6. A technician sees the work order, finds the location based on vague notes, and changes the light bulb
  7. The light bulb is replaced 4 days (or more) after it first blew out
  1. A light bulb goes out in the office
  2. Someone notices it and opens the Nuvolo app to report that a light bulb is out in Room #123.
  3. Once the person submits the issue, Nuvolo automatically creates a work order and assigns it to an available technician
  4. The work order includes the specific location and the type of light bulb that is needed
  5. The lightbulb is replaced within a few hours
HVAC System Requires Preventive by an External Vendor
  1. Facilities team calls/emails the vendor to schedule the maintenance
  2. Preventive maintenance is scheduled manually for an HVAC system and tracked in email
  3. Facilities team emails any affected staff letting the know about the service and resulting planned downtime/impact
  4. The internal maintenance team sends an email to the external vendor to confirm the appointment
  5. The external vendor arrives and completes the work, which is recorded in their own system that is unavailable to the internal teams
  6. Confirmation of the work is sent via email to the maintenance team
  7. An invoice is sent via snail mail
  8. Accounts Payable emails Maintenance to confirm the work done on the HVAC system
  9. Maintenance forwards confirmation email to Accounts Payable
  10. Accounts Payable issues a check to the vendor
  1. Preventive maintenance is scheduled for an HVAC system in Nuvolo
  2. The internal maintenance team sees the maintenance work scheduled in Nuvolo with a third-party vendor
  3. The vendor arrives and completes the work, recording all activity under the HVAC system’s record in Nuvolo
  4. Once work order is closed, an invoice is sent
  5. Accounting can easily reconcile the bill with a seamless SAP integration
A Freezer is Out of Temperature Range
  1. A freezer’s temperature is out of range, and someone reports it to their manager
  2. The manager calls maintenance who then calls the vendor
  3. The vendor comes in to address the issue and records the work in their own system
  4. Once completed, the internal manager calls a second external vendor to perform the necessary calibration
  5. The calibration vendor arrives and calibrates the freezer, recording the work in their own system
  6. The freezer is back online
  7. An invoice is sent via email
  8. Invoice must be connected to the work using SAP
  9. The bill is paid
  1. Someone sees that a freezer is out of range and reports it in Nuvolo
  2. The third-party vendor and a manager are alerted to the issue
  3. The third-party vendor comes into address the problem and can record the calibration directly in Nuvolo
  4. Payment is processed using a seamless integration between Nuvolo and SAP
  5. Complete records of the freezer’s performance, service and calibration are readily available for any future audits to prove regulatory compliance


These are just a few examples of how Nuvolo has helped this organ procurement organization improve operations and efficiency, while ensuring equipment used in regulated processes is fully compliant. Beyond these use cases, Mr. Fahl is optimistic about how Nuvolo can continue to support LifeNet Health’s priorities.

He said, “Having a system that can support GxP requirements in our complex regulatory ecosystem is paramount to our success. The upfront investment of digitizing our manual and paper process today will reduce our risks of human error in the future, while providing us with more accurate information for audits and process improvements.”

Nuvolo Connected Workplace provides one platform that everyone can use for all maintenance requests—from conventional tasks to larger, more complex repairs and calibrations. When everything is tracked in one system, you can identify and coordinate corrective and preventive maintenance, and you have the documentation in place to prove regulatory compliance. Are you ready to improve your operations? Reach out for more information.