<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=914352225269004&amp;ev=PageView%20&amp;noscript=1">


4 Recruitment pitfalls that could hinder the success of your clinical trial


Olivia Ustariz

Date Published

25 August 2023


Clinical trials are crucial for advancing medical breakthroughs and improving patient care, and significant time, effort, and resources are invested into their design to ensure their success. However, even the most well-planned trials can face unexpected challenges during the recruitment phase, which can threaten to derail the entire endeavour. The recruitment phase is critical to the success of a clinical trial, as it determines the availability and suitability of participants, and so directly impacts the trial's statistical power, data quality, and ability to draw meaningful conclusions. Not to mention, delays and difficulties in recruiting the required number of participants can extend the overall duration of the trial and lead to increased costs for personnel, site management, and other trial-related expenses. In this blog post, we will explore four common pitfalls that could hinder the success of your clinical trial recruitment, tips for overcoming them, and how our clinical trial recruitment services, Evriquest, can lend a helping hand to accelerate your clinical trial towards advanced medical knowledge. 

Pitfall one: Inadequate pre-trial planning

An ill-defined recruitment strategy - that is, a recruitment strategy that lacks clear objectives, target demographics, and specific methods for identifying and enrolling participants - could lead to inefficient resource allocation, missed enrolment targets, and difficulty in attracting and retaining a diverse pool of suitable participants. As such, an ill-defined recruitment strategy could not only exacerbate your trial's timelines and costs, but it could also compromise the quality and validity of your trial's data. We can help you navigate this recruitment pitfall by taking the burden of identifying and enrolling potential participants off your shoulders. As part of our clinical trial recruitment services, Evriquest, we can develop and implement tailored marketing campaigns that find and reach protocol-specific patient populations, thereby streamlining the recruitment process for overall trial success. 

Pitfall two: Lack of patient-centric approach

Failing to adopt a patient-centric approach - for instance, by designing your clinical trial and protocols to incorporate burdensome procedures, visit schedules, and long travel distances to trial sites - could dispel your participant's interest in the trial and lead to low retention rates. Overlooking clear and transparent communication with your participants that is empathetic and responsive to their needs and concerns could also decrease their trust and satisfaction in the trial process. One way you can overcome this challenge is by maintaining an open dialogue with your participants and addressing any fear or misconceptions they may have about your trial. This not only affirms your commitment to their well-being and safety, but it also helps ensure clinical development programs are grounded in the realities and experiences of those who need them. This is why, as part of our Evriquest clinical trial recruitment services, we deploy a dedicated Patient Experience team to help participants understand the trial requirements and determine if the trial is suitable for them.



Pitfall three: Stringent eligibility criteria

While some restrictions are necessary for safety and data integrity, imposing overly restrictive eligibility criteria for your clinical trial could significantly reduce the pool of potential participants and make it harder to find and recruit suitable candidates. You can overcome this challenge by engaging with key stakeholders, such as patient advocacy groups, and using dynamic recruitment strategies to reevaluate and adjust the criteria to strike a balance between safety and inclusivity. Our clinical trial recruitment software, Evrilink, which forms part of our Evriquest clinical trial recruitment services, can help with this. With Evrilink, you can produce real-time, de-identified reports of your recruitment and enrolment progress at an enterprise level, which you can subsequently use to make data-driven decisions that reflect your individual trial objectives.

Pitfall four: Inadequate engagement with trial sites

Failing to provide your trial sites with adequate communication, support, and resources could lead to missed opportunities, slower enrolment rates, and delays in completing the study. You can overcome this challenge by fostering a collaborative and supportive environment with your trial sites through open communication, comprehensive training, and a streamlined administrative workflow. Evrilink, our clinical trial recruitment software, can help with this, as it connects sites, sponsors, and participants in one place. With Evrilink, trial users across multiple sites can communicate with one another about which participants need to be followed up with and at what time. Likewise, you can produce de-identified reports on your recruitment progress and collaborate with your trial sites to identify their recruitment efficiencies and optimise the trial design and protocols for success. 

Final thoughts  

As this blog post has outlined, an ill-defined recruitment strategy, restrictive eligibility criteria, lack of patient-centricity, and low engagement with trial sites are four common pitfalls that could significantly impact your recruitment efforts, trial timeline, and data quality. By emphasising the importance of a well-defined recruitment strategy adaptive to new data, and prioritising transparent communication with your participants and trial sites, you can attract a diverse pool of suitable participants, foster strong investigator engagement, and ensure your trial is conducted collaboratively and efficiently. Our clinical trial recruitment services, Evriquest, can help streamline your recruitment process by leveraging tailored marketing campaigns, cutting-edge technology, and a dedicated Patient Experience team to reach and retain your target audience in a simplified workflow. Integrate these tips and our innovative solutions into your recruitment efforts and start laying the groundwork for generating meaningful, reliable data that propels medical advancements and improves patient outcomes. 

Contact us today to find out more information about how our products and services can help you achieve your clinical trial recruitment targets.