Reducing Review Times with Collaborative Review

Bad Rabbit developed a collaborative review tool that brings Microsoft Word-like functionality to protocols within existing IACUC systems. Features include:

  • Inline comment functionality—highlight a section and leave a comment right where you want it

  • On-the-page collaboration—respond to comments, direct reviewers to specific sections, all within the document itself

  • Faster reviews, with significantly less time spent processing comments

The inline Collaborative Review tool saves significant time and reduces burden for both reviewers and back office administrators.

Everything is much more streamlined…I spend a significantly less amount of time processing comments.
— System User

The Situation

IACUC protocols are comprehensive, detailed, and require two reviewers to be approved. In the not-so-distant past, before electronic research administration systems were available, reviews were completed using track changes in word processing programs. Reviewers could highlight text and leave a comment exactly where they wanted it, and easily pass the document back and forth through email.

When eRA systems went into use, most processes sped up—but the protocol review process fell behind. Systems didn’t support in-text commenting, so reviewers would have to go back and forth between the system and exported protocols, match comments to paragraphs in separate window, and re-enter the system to add additional comments. Administrators frequently had to contact reviewers for clarification and wait for a response. The whole process was cumbersome and time-consuming.  

Client needed a tool that would streamline collaborative review time, maintaining the security and convenience of in-system reviews while restoring the familiar, straightforward track changes functionality.


The Approach

After listening closely to Client’s needs, Bad Rabbit set out to develop a practical and research-efficient solution. The resulting collaborative review functionality lets reviewers view the entire protocol on one page, see track changes and comments, and respond directly to other reviewers.

The inline comment functionality, similar to Microsoft Word track changes, lets reviewers drop their comments directly into the text they’re referencing. It also adds an element of dialogue, as reviewers can add questions for their fellow reviewers.


The Outcome

The IACUC team is thrilled with the collaborative review tool. According to leadership, they’ve been able to get the same volume of work done in two days that used to take all week. And reviewers love it because they can view the entire protocol on one page without having to hop around and hunt for comments.

With the streamlined collaborative review process in place within the IACUC sytem, reviewers complete reviews more quickly, and administrators spend less time processing. And because the entire protocol stays in-system, there’s less risk of security or compliance concerns.

We deal with a lot of other developers for other products and we get told a lot, ‘No, we can’t do that.’ So, when you work with a company that all you hear from is ‘sure, we can do that, let’s figure out how,’ it always helps the process move forward.
— IACUC Analyst

In the future, Client hopes for tagging functionality that will let commenters tag each other in comments, and send notifications to catch their attention. Discussion are also underway to explore how a similar functionality may be beneficial in the post-approval monitoring stage.


Dreaming of the one tool that would make your job easier? Bad Rabbit can help. Schedule a consultation today—we can’t wait to hear your vision.