“There’s so much we can do with Microsoft Dynamics CRM—it will be the foundation for our business for many years to come.”
Martin Gunn, Chief Information Officer, Healthcare at Home
Healthcare at Home is the United Kingdom’s leading clinical homecare and patient support organisation, providing complex care in the home and community. Clients include the National Health Service, pharmaceutical companies, and private medical insurers. The healthcare provider deployed customer relationship management (CRM) system Microsoft Dynamics CRM to help staff increase their productivity. As a result, efficiency has been boosted by 20 per cent and employees deliver better patient care.
The Healthcare at Home patient administration system was becoming slow and unresponsive as demands on it increased. Martin Gunn, Chief Information Officer, Healthcare at Home, says: “It just wasn’t flexible enough to support the services we were moving into.”
Its existing system presented issues with upgrades and maintenance. Plus, the training required was expensive and time-consuming. The company needed a flexible platform on which it could build and consolidate a number of disparate systems. And it needed a solid foundation for growth.
Healthcare at Home needed a flexible system, and, after evaluating various products on the market, it decided on Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Another factor in the decision was the IT department’s existing Microsoft skills, which meant no expensive training or reliance on external support. “We didn’t have to bring in new skills to learn the system,” says Gunn.
Healthcare at Home chose a robust solution in Microsoft Dynamics CRM
and multiple load balanced servers.
Microsoft BizTalk was also selected to manage and improve the data integration between applications.
With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, nursing staff spend less time on administration and are able to focus more on patients. Efficiency has been boosted by 20 per cent, fewer mistakes are made, and patients receive better care.
Around 20 per cent increase in efficiency .The team developed call scripts in Microsoft Dynamics CRM for the customer service teams to follow and to capture detailed customer histories. This has improved interaction with patients and reduced phone time. Customer service team members now know what they need to ask a patient and can type answers directly into the system. “The scripting has taken quite a lot of time off the transactional element of our business. The process to arrange patient deliveries is now much simpler and quicker, leaving more time for value-adding elements,” says Gunn. “We now have a standardised record of every conversation with a patient.” The resulting automated workflow means the process is focused around structured conversations, with fewer mistakes. It also means the company is no longer as reliant on individuals’ knowledge and experience, because everyone can access the system. Gunn says: “The system will know, for example, that a patient needs a repeat delivery of his or her prescription and prompts each stage of the process, from ordering to dispensing and delivery. Before, we’d have to create an order manually in a separate system.” Both the new reliance on the system—rather than on individuals—and the faster transaction with patients significantly encourage company growth.
Greater accuracy . With everything logged in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, there are now fewer mistakes. This results in a better experience for Healthcare at Home patients, but it’s also critical from a duty of care perspective.
More productive nursing .Healthcare at Home used to schedule its 400-plus nurses regionally. Microsoft Dynamics CRM has centralised nursing management records for all nurses, their competencies, and all patient visits. Now, a centralised team can manage nurses on a national scale, with greater visibility of who’s doing what. “Previously, your regional nurse might’ve been hours away, when there was another nurse just over the region’s border five minutes away. We can now manage appointments by an individual’s proximity to the job rather than which team they’re in,” says Gunn. And these savings in time and money mean the company can schedule more home visits.
Mobile c onnectivity .Nursing staff have mobile connectivity built-in to an off-the-shelf tablet solution so they can refer to and update records when they’re visiting patients. “Information comes in real time from nurses on visits, meaning we can supply this data to referring clinicians immediately. This also allows us to bill earlier,” says Gunn.Travel times and costs have both been reduced because nursing staff no longer need to visit the office to pick up files and update reports. Administration tasks can be completed in the field, allowing more time for patient visits.
Increased competitiveness .Clinicians are provided with a portal to access comprehensive, up-to-date patient information. This is a big advantage for clinicians because they can make faster and better-informed decisions, which, ultimately, benefit patients.
Rapid customisation .As an innovative organisation, Healthcare at Home regularly creates new service models in support of its customers. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, it has the flexibility and agility to develop functionality fast. “We’ve got the flexibility now to support the delivery of a new service in weeks,” says Gunn.
Better future .“Microsoft Dynamics CRM gives us plenty of space to grow, and there’s so much more we want to do with it,” says Gunn. The homecare market is changing rapidly, bringing challenges that require astute strategy. Having a system that’s flexible enough to allow the company to react quickly is vital. “One of the biggest benefits of Microsoft Dynamics CRM is having a system that we’re completely in control of,” says Gunn. “There’s so much we can do with Microsoft Dynamics CRM—it will be the foundation for our business for many years to come.”
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