Hunterdon Healthcare is a health system in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, consisting of a 190-bed hospital and 60 care locations which have approximately 1 million ambulatory visits annually. The organization, founded in 1955, provides a full range of preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic inpatient and outpatient hospital and community health services.
Hunterdon Healthcare has embarked on a plan to simplify and modernize its vast application portfolio. “For the past 20 years, we’ve had a boutique approach to IT, where each department independently acquired the software that it needed,” says Daniel Morreale, VP & CIO of Hunterdon Healthcare. As a result, the organization has many duplicative systems, which will need to be consolidated over time. Along with these planned changes, the team knew that it was time to replace the Novell GroupWise email system. “We needed to upgrade to the 21st century so that we could be more collaborative,” he says. “Our previous email system had limitations with file size, required external products for archiving and sequestering and presented challenges around security and usability.” It was important to the organization to add instant messaging activity, a stronger archive solution and video communication.
After an extensive review of vendors, gathering input from users and IT, Morreale selected Google’s G Suite of productivity applications in the spring of 2016. The Google platform would support the transition to a modern, cloud-based email system and offer a full suite of productivity applications, allowing the organization to gradually move away from legacy systems. Morreale was familiar with SADA Systems and its deep Google Cloud expertise already, making the IT consulting firm a natural choice to help Hunterdon migrate and transition to Google, he says.
Partner for Success with SADA Systems
By June of 2016, Hunterdon had moved its entire workforce of approximately 3000 users to Google G Suite. But that was just the first step; from here, with the help of SADA Systems’ change management team, the greater challenge was helping employees all the way up the chain understand and adopt new workflows to get the full power out of G Suite.
To that end, Hunterdon IT and SADA delivered group and one-on-one trainings, along with webinars and YouTube training videos. “SADA has really helped due to their deep knowledge of the product and how it’s used in other places,” Morreale says. “The one-to-one environment for learning has been very effective to change old behaviors.”|
SADA Systems will be on site to deliver regular monthly trainings in 2017, as Hunterdon works to increase adoption of the broader offerings of G Suite applications. This, however, will be more of an organic approach, stated the Hunterdon team. “We don’t want to push a mass migration to the other apps, but instead we will highlight the benefits and let it grow. We are already seeing this happen. One of our departments had more than 130,000 documents in Google Drive after the first 30 days.”
Current and Expected Benefits of Going Google
- Rapid and successful adoption of Gmail: In surveys, Hunterdon IT team reports an 84.6% satisfaction rate with Google after six months of use and is pleased with how the company has responded to the new Google environment. Employees regularly stop members of the IT team in the hallways to share positive feedback. “I’m an IT guy, so I am always surprised when users are happy,” Morreale reported.
- Customized training helps users transition faster: SADA’s collaborative approach toward workforce training was instrumental in helping employees get over the hump of change, says Denise Amiano, from Morreale’s team who worked closely with the SADA change management team: “It’s been so great working with SADA to create customized trainings based on our diverse user needs. They are always willing to go in whatever direction we need to go.”
- Expected software licensing cost savings: Hunterdon needed to renew its Microsoft Office license in 2016, yet in three years, Morreale anticipates a cost savings of $1.3 million a year from moving to the cloud-based G Suite.
- Expected savings on storage: The strategy is to increase employee usage of Google Drive, considering the ample cost savings on storage Hunterdon can achieve by moving data out of its own data center. “We are sitting on 600 TB of data and growing, which is really starting to push the limits of our infrastructure.”
- Supporting broader organizational goals: Hunterdon, like many healthcare systems, is grappling with transformative changes in the way that patient care is delivered and managed. Google is the optimal platform to help them achieve goals of better outcomes and processes. “Efficient workflow is critical,” Morreale says. “The easier we make it for people to collaborate and get out of silos, the more comprehensive impact we can have on changing population health along with the profitability and effectiveness of our organization.”