How would you describe the word ‘change’? Do you associate it with something positive, progressive, evolutionary? Or is it complex, arduous and unnecessary?
If there’s one thing that’s certain, change is constant. We as humans continue to evolve and react to the various shifting circumstances presented to us. The current pandemic caused by the outbreak of COVID-19 continues to push the boundaries of how we respond and react to certain crisis, but also evolve and emerge beyond this.
Source: Drew Hays @ Unsplash
Aspen Medical, an award winning Australian-owned global healthcare solutions provider, is heavily involved in the initial response and current mitigation strategies that came across as a result of the pandemic. This involved the ramp up of 120 clinics and surgeries to manage COVID-19 symptom testing, the distribution of PPE materials to various hospital sites and centres, the coordination and setup of the original ‘hotel quarantine’ policy (with regards to processing overseas travellers), providing the expertise, technology and processes required to manage these centres and the current distribution of vaccinations within the Aged Care and Disabilities sector.
During this time, Aspen Medical was required to ramp up their operations significantly to assist with the coordination of the response plan whilst also adhering to their own protocols in response to the pandemic.
I spoke with Ruth Bishop, Business Transformation Manager at Aspen Medical to understand her thoughts & observations during this period with regards to significant large transformation projects. Ruth is an experienced, seasoned Business Transformation Manager of over 20 years with experience managing change in various industries who currently works for Aspen Medical managing various projects both internally and externally.
Ruth Bishop, Business Transformation Manager at Aspen Medical
At the time of the pandemic, Aspen Medical were rolling out their new system, Neo, a centralised back-office system to help provide a streamlined, consistent and modern approach to conducting business. (This was built off the back of Oracle’s Cloud Suite of solutions including HCM, ERP and SCM). “By implementing Oracle, we have everyone in the organization having to access Neo at one point in time, to access their HCM records as an example.” As with many organizations, Aspen Medical had a variety of policies around remote-working with some working at home, and some in the office. This did make it a little more difficult to coordinate various actions. “We were originally expecting the availability of staff present physically to guide key project leads and employees on how to navigate and use the system.”
Similar to the change in circumstances, change often quickly in the technology space. “New technology emerges all the time. Technology encourages us to regularly change and accept new ways of learning.” Originally as with many other successful software implementations, the task to on-board super users and employees started with a very accepted traditional approach. Employees would attend live training sessions, have a super user guide them through the key components and have that reinforced by the availability of manuals stored in a central repository. With the challenges caused by remote working, Aspen Medical did seek to find another means at achieving this. “At the start of our project, we didn’t have OGL, so we were going to start to write guides out manually, the old school way…and we got to a point where we realise we don’t have the time to write these anymore (considering the circumstances).”
An example of technological change is the ability for users to start learning in the flow of work, helping them complete key business transactions more effectively. A solution that helps achieve this is called Oracle Guided Learning (OGL). OGL is a Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) empowering users to learn in the flow of work (in application), facilitating increased adoption of SaaS, effective continuous change management and optimizing resources needed to service support & maintenance of the users application needs.
Ruth comments “Oracle Guided Learning was exceptionally helpful as it allows our end-users to solve their own business problems in real-time… it took away the elements of stress (for the project teams) ensuring we could continue delivering the correct information to our stakeholders through comprehensive, interactive workflows in application.”
Aspen Medical has just gone live with Oracle Guided Learning as part of their wider adoption of Neo and have started to notice certain benefits. As part of Neo, there is a built-in service desk they completed to help users engage effectively with back-office teams. “Before this staff sent emails to various departments (HR, IT, Payroll). Now staff are empowered to help themselves before they seek help.” One of the benefits OGL is helping to provide is to adhere to that culture by providing the education users need to ‘help themselves’ when completing a transaction with minimal service desk interaction for basic requests. “As this is a new process, OGL has been helpful to guide users on how to submit tickets, without the need to step them through verbally through the telephone or via email.”
Glenn Keys, Founder and Executive Chairman of Aspen Medical
Another space this has been helpful for Aspen Medical is for their ‘alumni staff’ – staff that are part of the Aspen Medical community but don’t work full time for the organisation. By providing the necessary guides for these staff to access key pieces of information such as their employment records and any changes that came with policies Aspen Medical introduced, “it’s extremely beneficial as it removes another layer of education we need to provide individually.”
Ruth does note that whilst digital solutions are becoming more accepted, there is a need for balance in how organisations provide training to their staff. She cites the example of universities providing a mixture of online and physical face-face settings to educate their students. “It does come down to the individual (preference) but also the managers themselves. If their staff are challenged to venture out of their comfort zone then we can probably see more benefits… As we progress through society in the years to come, we will see more people be able to adjust to big change.”
Ruth and the team at Aspen Medical are hoping OGL continues to evolve to help them deliver the confidence, continuity and consistency for their staff members to use Neo and subsequent processes effectively. “It’s all about continuous improvement… this doesn’t stop just after you implemented… its based off anything I can do, can I do this smarter, is there an option out there I haven’t seen yet.” They continue to look for improvements internally and externally to continue the great work and services they provide to our community within the healthcare space.
To connect with the authors please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Chris is a marketing professional with a passion for making a difference how people progress and develop through the aid of technology. Currently he is the Senior Marketing Manager, at Oracle University, helping to convey how our portfolio of education solutions can help customers accelerate cloud adoption, manage continuous change, create and master their expertise and close the skills gap.