Over eight years the data healthcare rm had been collecting identified a strong correlation with ill health and underlying risk factors such as inactivity, excess weight, psychosocial factors, sub optimal nutrition and poor sleep.
Following the COVID-19 pandemic, more employers and the Government, recognised the link between increased risk of disease and personal risks factors. Prior to the pandemic Wellbeing had become a “must have” benefit offered by employers that would enable them to attract and retain staff. Post pandemic, growing recognition of the potential link between Wellbeing and ill health that can lead to absence and cost for interventions has meant that more and more and more employers are looking to initiate workplace wellbeing initiatives designed to increase the morale, effectiveness and resilience of their workforce whilst also reducing the cost of absence, healthcare plan, Group Income Protection and Incapacity claims.
“As UK organisations began to truly grasp the importance of taking a proactive stance where workforce wellbeing was concerned, we began to experience a significant uptake in demand for new and enhanced digital services and tailored health provisions. We recognised that our unique data capture which allowed us to provide powerful insights to our clients was a potential USP for us to attract new clients. These insights included being able to identify the personal risk factors that were mostly like to cause or contribute to disease and injury and which, if not addressed, would result in employees continuing to need interventions that could otherwise be avoided. This enabled us to work in partnership with our clients to tailor benefits to meet the needs of their business and the people within their business in a manner that is very unique in the healthcare market. By further digitalising and developing out our proposition, we recognised that we could expand our reach within workforces and enable our clients and our prospective clients to build happier, healthier workforces,” explains Chris Howell, Technical Director at healthcare rm.
Digitising the healthcare rm offering and further extending the firm’s portfolio of digital capabilities was just part of the challenge confronting Chris and his team.
Accelerating the delivery of data-driven insights that could power next-generation risk-based workforce strategies would make it possible to enable timely health interventions personalised to each and every employee.
“To realise our vision in a sustainable way, we needed to remodel our core portal IT infrastructure and systems so that we could mobilise faster, accommodate growth at scale, and deliver richer real-time reporting and insights for customers,” continues Chris.
“By unifying our systems, we’d be able to streamline and optimise how we ingest, manage and integrate data. Unleashing powerful reporting and analytics to deliver timely and truly holistic snapshots of the current and predicted health of a company’s workforce – together with all the insights needed to nudge, encourage and support individual employees to embrace changes that will have a positive impact on their health.”
Having initiated a move to Microsoft Azure, in 2021, Chris and his team had already laid the foundations for a cloud-powered operation that could take advantage of the cloud’s limitless capacity to assure the delivery of a growing portfolio of personalised digital services to a rapidly expanding customer base in a highly cost-effective and flexible manner. Next, Chris needed to find a partner to help engineer the integration of the company’s cloud-based CRM and finance/ERP systems and optimise the build out of highly responsive customer and service websites – or portals – that could seamlessly interact with the newly unified back-end IT infrastructure they had built. We had started to develop new Portals to help us to spin up new, fully configured and personalised support and service portals for employers and insurers. However, we need to increase our speed of delivery with minimum development effort. This was vital for future-proofing our digital proposition and ensuring we could infinitely scale up our business operations in an ultra-efficient way that was truly sustainable for the long term,” states Chris.
“At that point, we had an introduction to Serversys from one of our other key partners at what proved to be a pivotal moment in our digital evolution. Not only did they help us catalyse and improve on our initial vision, they also designed and implemented everything to support our Azure backbone. A move that has delivered a hugely flexible and scalable environment that supports future innovation and won’t limit how we deliver new value for customers.”
To design the right architecture for healthcare rm’s needs, Serversys undertook a deep discovery dive to explore the underlying processes that would need to be supported and define all customer-facing interactions the service portals would need to support. During the review, Serversys also evaluated how data could be enhanced across healthcare rm’ centralised platform, as well as assessing all reporting and data security needs.
“Serversys played a key role in helping to enable us to link our core operational systems with our new finance system. It was evident from the very start that they shared our passion about where we wanted to go. Not only did they articulate how they could support us, they also openly shared their knowledge and understanding when it came to the best approach for integrating our systems and creating a template for the rapid build-out of portals,” says Chris.
Having completed the build out of the newly integrated portal architecture, Serversys next undertook the creation of a comprehensive core ‘white label’ portal design that would become the blueprint for developing all future portals.
“In under a year, Serversys had enabled us to go to market with an innovative new digital support, advice and treatment service for employers and insurers, covering all aspects of health,” continues Chris.
The newly launched YourHalo portal delivers 24/7 access to mental health support as well as access to consultations for physical health, nutrition, weight management, exercise and activity and sleep. Consultations are delivered by healthcare rm’s team of practitioners that includes mental health specialists, CBT therapists, physiotherapists, sports therapists, nutritionists, personal trainers and sleep experts. Users can choose their preferred practitioner according to their area of interests and book a video or phone consultation.
Uniquely, healthcare rm’s service portals are also capable of seamlessly integrating with customers’ HR or sickness absence reporting systems. A feature that both supports smarter workforce strategies and increases operational efficiencies for organisations, while simplifying life for employees.
Implementing a strong IT foundation that’s scalable, future-proofed and designed around an optimised and integrated data architecture that makes it possible to undertake predictive modelling on behalf of customers has enabled healthcare rm to catapult its highly differentiated digital offering to a much wider marketplace.
“We’ve already seen a significant growth in the number of customers and employees we now serve,” confirms Chris.
“Serversys have enabled us to take our B2B proposition to a B2C market and thus a much wider UK employee community. Enabling us to serve more people in a highly cost-effective way.” The newly streamlined IT infrastructure is proving to be a powerful engine for sustained future growth.
“We’re well positioned to handle any amount of potential growth with confidence. There’s no worrying about whether we’ll have the IT resources to support thousands upon thousands new users. Plus, we can now spin up new and highly customised portals in a matter of days – not months,” he continues.
Feedback from healthcare rm’s business users around Serverys ability to support the solution in finance and operational teams, has also been overwhelmingly positive.
“From everyone’s perspective, it just works. An added bonus is that Serversys now handle all support for the specific solution and they truly own it – my users tell me they respond fast, communicate clearly, and won’t rest until they get things resolved. That in itself represents a significant benefit for myself and my team – we no longer get pulled into escalation processes that take us away from more strategic development tasks.”
“We wanted to transform our IT infrastructure so we could scale, at minimal cost, and accelerate the delivery of digital health and wellbeing services to a much wider UK employee base. Ultimately, we don’t want to be experts in Azure or other technologies. We want to be market leaders in the delivery of digital health and employee wellbeing propositions that truly make a difference, and that’s what Serversys have enabled us to achieve.”
“Thanks to Serversys, we now have a much faster response to customer portal and digital solution needs – there’s no need to remodel systems each time.” Evaluating how the partnership works, Chris describes what Serversys brings to the table.
“We look for like-minded and forward-thinking entrepreneurial partners who aren’t afraid to challenge our thinking and can help us deliver our vision. Serversys do all that and more. Looking to the future, I can see the relationship continuing to grow as we further strengthen and enhance the digitalisation of our services. It’s an exciting time for healthcare rm, and Serversys is the right partner to accompany us on the journey.”