Healthcare in the Digital Age: A Progress Report on Nuance Healthcare’s Digital Transformation
This post is part of a 3-part series from Nuance authored by Dianne Sforza and Clitfon Teate.
In September, we published our first BMC customer blog, which describes the digital transformation occurring in the healthcare industry and how we’re leveraging BMC Remedyforce to reinvent Nuance Healthcare’s service management processes for the digital age. In this second blog, we’ll tell you about our progress with Remedyforce in the first few months after go-live.
As we explained in the first blog, our group is responsible for managing and supporting our hosted healthcare solutions. With respect to Remedyforce, all our users are our internal employees. The user community includes our customer support team, our development team, and any other employees of the Healthcare division.
To date, we’ve implemented Remedyforce incident, service request, and change management, and we’re already realizing significant improvements. Perhaps the major benefit in the short time we’ve been using Remedyforce is that it makes visible what was previously invisible. It’s given us the ability to monitor and measure things that we couldn’t monitor and measure before. As a result, we’ve gained insight into the many things we need to address as an organization. We’re talking about the people and process portions of the people/process/technology equation. In short, Remedyforce has helped us get back to the basics of service management.
Improved Incident Management
Going live with Remedyforce incident management exposed some issues in the way we handled incidents. With our previous tool, people typically didn’t enter enough information when they created tickets. Consequently, there were a lot of email exchanges between the ticket originator and the tech support agent to capture all the relevant details. In addition, because we had no way of tracking tickets, sometimes they languished in the system for months. What’s more, we had no way to identify ownership of incidents, so our support staff had no way to keep people up to date on ticket status.
Remedyforce has eliminated all those problems. Today, when an originator creates a ticket, Remedyforce ensures that all the necessary information is filled in. It then tracks all incidents and incident owners through the entire resolution lifecycle. As a result, we know how long every ticket spends in the queue; we know who owns it; and we can keep ticket owners up to date on the status.
Improved Change Management
Remedyforce is also delivering immense value when it comes to change management. Previously, we had limited visibility into and control of the change process. Poor visibility made it extremely difficult to maintain compliance with industry and government mandates. As with incidents, we were not able to capture all the information we needed from the person requesting the change—creating a back-and-forth flow of email messages to fill in the gaps. We also struggled with a manual change approval process. We had to dig into a spreadsheet to figure out who the approvers were for each request. Then there was another flurry of messages to track down approvers and get the go-ahead.
Our change process has improved remarkably with Remedyforce. Automated change approvals ensure that all approvals are gathered before a change is implemented. Also, we can customize the questions that appear on the change request form to ensure that we get the information we need. Not surprisingly, changes are moving through the process at a faster pace because we’ve eliminated the delays caused by the back-and-forth between change managers and change requestors. Best of all, Remedyforce validates that all changes are approved and deployed in compliance with internal policies and external mandates.
Improved Communication with Users
The Remedyforce service catalog has greatly improved communication between our organization and the user communities. With respect to service requests, our previous model opened up access to data and services that our users didn’t need. Now we have a controlled model based on the Remedyforce service catalog, which already contains about 25 services—for example, password resets, access requests, and requests for certain reports. The catalog is role based, so it presents only those services a user is authorized to access.
Previously, everyone used a general service request form regardless of the request type. Now the form is tailored based on the type of request, enabling us to dig out the information we need upfront to fulfill service requests accurately and in a timely manner.
Just the Beginning
We’re taking a step-at-a-time approach in tapping the full power of Remedyforce. Based on the results we’ve seen to date, we’re enthusiastic about moving ahead. Knowledge management has captured our attention because we can see how beneficial it can be. We have several outdated and unmanaged sources of knowledge. We are interested in implementing a controlled knowledge management process in Remedyforce, so that our administrators and engineers have access to content that has been approved and continuously reviewed and updated for accuracy. We are also looking to populate the configuration management database (CMDB) to enhance our asset management capabilities and provide valuable data across all disciplines to make incident, problem, change, and other processes more efficient.
We are the first organization outside of IT to implement and manage a platform on top of Salesforce. We’ve become a “poster child” in that regard. Our corporate IT department worked closely with us to ensure everything went well. Based on our early success, corporate IT is now looking to integrate other platforms with Salesforce and have modified the governance model to facilitate that endeavor.
We’re excited about the results we’re achieving, and we look forward to sharing more of our successes with you.