Field Enterprise Research Support Services for the Veterans Health Administration

Case Study - Findings Analysis and Insights - Performance Optimization - Program and Project Management - Program Evaluation and Measurement - Recruiting, Staffing and Retention - Research and Evaluation - Research Design and Execution - Veteran Health

Field Enterprise Research Support Services for the Veterans Health Administration

Posted on 12.17.22

Niche staffing needs to support projects at the forefront of clinical research

VA’s research program has five strategic priorities to support its mission:

  • Increasing Veterans’ access to high-quality clinical trials
  • Increasing the real-world impact of VA research
  • Implementing VA data to inform better care for Veterans
  • Actively promoting diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Building community through VA research

VA determines research priorities by consulting with VA clinical leaders across the country. Recently, VA researchers found innovative psychotherapy demonstrates promising results for reducing posttraumatic headache symptoms in Veterans with traumatic brain injury.

To continue making research strides like this, VA needed help supporting various research studies and clinical trials across the country. VA turned to Aptive for assistance. Aptive provides support so VA investigators have more time to focus on their research.

Historically, hiring top talent for research vacancies is very labor intensive. Depending on the project, VA research positions can be short- or long-term and unique in scope, which makes finding and onboarding new hires quickly even more challenging.


Facilitating national enterprise-level research efforts: With clinical and research experts on staff, Aptive was ready to provide high-level support to VA’s research needs.

Project staffing

ORD needed to staff multiple separate projects within a four-week time frame. With years of experience in sourcing, onboarding and credentialing top talent, Aptive was able to swiftly staff each project to 100% capacity within that time frame. Aptive did so without causing any disruption to existing research support.

Quality control systems

To remain responsive to ORD’s needs and schedule, as well as ensure quality deliverables and effective organization and communication, Aptive developed evaluation tools to measure the quantitative and qualitative performance of support staff and the pilot program.

Research and administrative support

Aptive provides research offices with data analytics, communications, training and administrative support. The project team attends and facilitates committee meetings, creates standard operating procedures and other support documents and assists the research team with the Institutional Review Board process.

Data analytics and statistics

Aptive has deployed niche subject matter experts to various research sites. For example, a genetic epidemiologist is supporting biomarker and geographic information systems research in Boise, Idaho, and several statisticians and data analysts are supporting clinical trials with data collection, analysis and reporting. Many of these efforts result in peer-reviewed journal articles for which Aptive employees are co-authors.


A strong and swift start yields early positive results

Aptive met VA’s goal of swiftly filling vacancies. On average, Aptive filled research positions in 20 business days. The experienced team members swiftly onboard staff to research sites and studies, which has an immediate impact on VA research.

So far, with Aptive’s help, VA has successfully staffed over a dozen projects across Research Administration Support Services and Medical Research Support Services. This process requires accurate project scoping, interviewing potential candidates and swiftly onboarding top talent.

Because of Aptive’s careful selection of quality candidates best suited for different research projects, VA has experienced near zero turnover. In addition, Aptive effectively provided high-level program oversight, timely client communication and detailed execution of every project-related task.

With this support, VA can hire and retain top talent who dedicate themselves professionally to improving Veterans’ health and well-being.