EMP Designs Intranet to Emulate iPhone Interface using Open Text Technologies


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Unique user interface provides physicians with improved access to applications, an effective navigational structure, and a more personalized end user experience

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EMP Designs Intranet to Emulate iPhone Interface using Open Text Technologies

  1. 1. customer success story Established in 1992, Emergency Medicine Physicians (EMP) is one of the leading providers of emergency medical services in the United States. EMP began with one hospital partner in 1992; currently there are approximately 1,000 physicians that staff 56 locations in 12 states. Enhancing intranet effectiveness EMP identified the need to redesign their intranet so they could provide their dispersed physicians with improved access to applications and a more personalized end user experience. “Simply put, we wanted to provide one-stop shopping for our physicians where they can go to get their email, their statistical data, information for their business expense accounts, and their paychecks, and collaborate with other physicians in the field. We have remote sites across the country and it can be challenging for our physicians to communicate with the other groups,” explains Jesse Eterovich, Manager of Application Development at Emergency Medicine Physicians. EMP realized that their existing portal solution did not offer the functionality they needed or provide them with the integration capabilities that they required to be able to pull information together from the various sources and advance productivity and efficiency. Providing mobile delivery was also a key requirement for the physicians who are on the road and need to be able to access the applications and content via their mobile device. As a result, EMP placed a strong focus on validating the design for mobile devices when the redesign project first began. Open Text technologies help transform site During the selection process, EMP considered several vendors before selecting Open Text Portal (formerly Vignette Portal), and Open Text Collaboration, Vignette Edition (formerly Vignette Collaboration). According to Eterovich, a major decision factor was ease of use. “We have a very small IT department and minimal resources, but we have high demands. For some of the other solutions that we looked at, we would have had to install a lot of different components and we’d need to dive down to low-level code to accomplish things. The Open Text Web-based platform provided us with an out-of-the-box solution that would give us a Web site with functionality that we never had before, in a very short period of time.” EMP purchased the Open Text platform in December 2008 and had it installed by January 2009. “By March of ‘09 we had a functional portal site integrated with Active Directory, so we had security right off the bat, and some features like the statistical data available from day one,” says Eterovich. “We feel certain that we could never have accomplished this with some of the other vendors we looked at. I guarantee it.” Industry Healthcare Customer Business Challenges n Dispersed workforce need easy access to tools and applications n Intranet required a more personalized end user experience n Physicians located at remote sites across the country making it challenge to communicate with each other n Existing portal application did not offer the required capabilities to integrate various systems and sources Business Solutions n Open Text Collaboration, Vignette Edition n Open Text Portal n Open Text Portal Builder n Open Text Business Integration Studio Business Benefits n Web-based platform offers out-of- the-box solution for easy deployment; simple, one-click access to data n Improved access to information and collaboration among dispersed teams n Unique UI emulating the iPhone® allows for a fully customizable experience; users can drag and drop portlets to build their own personalized home page n Intranet optimized for the iPhone and the BlackBerry® Storm so users can see the same portlets on their mobile device EMP Designs Intranet to Emulate iPhone ® Interface using Open Text Technologies Unique user interface provides physicians with improved access to applications and a more personalized end user experience
  2. 2. User interface design fully customizable Named mypulse, EMP’s intranet design delivers a unique user interface (UI) emulating the iPhone,® and allows for a fully custom- izable experience, enabling users to drag and drop portlets to build their own personalized home page. Additional features of mypulse includes integration with social software and applications such as wikis and blogs, a notification system that allows messages to be sent to the intranet or a user’s phone, and an RSS feed reader from which the administrator and users can select feeds for display. mypulse has been optimized for the iPhone and the BlackBerry® Storm. This means users can see the same portlets that they’ve chosen for their laptop, on their mobile device. “The iPhone has had a lot of success with its ease of use. We felt that same experience could evolve into a Web site and we were able to accomplish it: simple, one-click access to data,” explains Eterovich. “We’re also offering users the ability to display the data the way they want by using the portlets. Giving the user more control was also a large factor.” Open Text Professional Services worked with EMP to develop the unique UI that allows users to drag and drop portlets to customize their homepages. “When they’re on the homepage, they can click the customize page and see all the portlets that they currently have. If they want to add more, they can find a scrollable list of portlets that they can drag down into the customize page. Once they close that page and go back to their homepage, the changes take effect,” explains Eterovich. The feedback for the new site has been extremely positive.“Basically, the proof is in the pudding,” says Eterovich. “We recently did some statistical analysis and found that out of a 1,000-person user base, there are one to two physicians logging in every minute. That’s a huge success for us. We don’t have the stats from two years ago, but we can almost guarantee that we didn’t have more than a dozen users logging in per day, and now it’s one to two every minute. Just by that stat alone, it shows what our users think of the site.” Portlets offer personalized views Open Text Builder streamlines portlet development efforts through an intuitive, code-free development environment that relies on a standards-based Web service to consume data from virtually any application or repository, delivering the IT department at EMP a single platform for application integration and deployment. The physicians have several portlets to choose from for a personalized user experience. Action Items One of the most popular portlets in mypulse is Action Items. “Instead of getting emails from the different departments asking them to complete an action, we wanted to create a portlet so the physicians would have one place to go to access all the items,” explains Eterovich. “For example, they can get action items from our document management system letting them know that there’s a new Coder Communications available; or from our Lotus Domino application letting them know that there’s some continuing edu- cation that they need to complete; or from our credentialing soft- ware letting them know that they need to update one of their licenses for a certain site. The challenge here was pooling all these different systems together and then displaying them in Portal. We used Open Text Business Integration Studio, Collaboration, and Portal for this portlet. Business Integration Studio is our connector between those external applications; Collaboration is the container for all the action items and Portal is the presentation. Portal interacts with Collaboration to display and notify the physicians that they have an action item to complete.” “We recently did some statistical analysis and found that out of a 1,000-person user base, there are one to two physicians logging in every minute. That’s a huge success for us. We don’t have the stats from two years ago, but we can almost guarantee that we didn’t have more than a dozen users logging in per day, and now it’s one to two every minute. Just by that stat alone, it shows what our users think of the site.” – Jesse Eterovich, Emergency Medicine Physicians.
  3. 3. Notify Me EMP customized the Notify Me portlet to interface with Collaboration. This allows EMP administrators to configure notification messages in Collaboration and trigger these notifications by dropping a file into a particular Collaboration folder. Users subscribe to various Collaboration folders through the Portal. “Once a document is dropped inside a folder in Collaboration, a notification is sent out,” says Eterovich.“For example: paychecks. We’ve created a process using Business Integration Studio that not only imports the images into a portal, but also sends a document to Collaboration that contains all the users that have just received a new paycheck. Then we created a business process inside Collaboration that takes that file and compares it to who has subscribed to the Paychecks folder. If there’s a link, we send a notification to that physician, letting them know that they received a new paycheck. The paychecks used to be mailed out to all our physicians. Now they go onto the portal and can view a scanned-in image.” Business Integration Studio facilitates integration of Open Text’s content, collaboration, process, analysis and portal management applications with disparate applications and content repositories inside and outside the enterprise. Another popular notification is for the EMP newsletters. “All of our newsletters are saved as a PDF, so we’ve created a folder in Collaboration called Newsletters and we’ve given some business users at the corporate office access to the Collaboration folder through WebDAV. They go in and upload the PDF to the Collaboration folder and then anyone that has subscribed to that Collaboration folder through the Notify Me portlet gets the notification,” says Eterovich. “The driving force behind the Notify Me portlet was to reduce emails. We no longer need to send out emails telling them that there’s a newsletter available or that they have a new action item to do. This gives the users a lot more control and it helps us get the information out in a friendlier manner.” News Physicians who want to subscribe to news updates from their favorite Web sites can aggregate RSS feeds from many sites. EMP customized the newsfeed portlet for improved usability, as Eterovich explains, “The newsfeeds have a really nice UI where the feeds automatically blend into one another. They can simply scroll through all the different feeds, click on a link and the sites open up in a lightbox, not a pop-up, but an iFrame window on top of mypulse, giving it a more seamless feel. This keeps the user within mypulse and allows them to view content from external Web sites.” Tangier scheduling software EMP uses Tangier Emergency Physician Scheduling software to provide the physicians with access to their latest schedules. To simplify access, they created a portlet to integrate with the third party Web site and used different Credential Vault techniques to maintain credentials. “We were able to use the Open Text Web Connector portlet along with a small amount of customization, to store the credentials for this external Web site inside the Credential Vault. When our users go to the Tangier portlet, we not only iFrame that external Web site, but we pass the credentials for that user from the Credential Vault to that Web site, basically giving it a single sign-on field so they do not have to remember additional credentials, just their credentials for mypulse. By leveraging the Credential Vault, we’re able to allow them to seamlessly log in to external Web sites,” says Eterovich. “We did the same thing with email. We’ve stored the physicians’ email credentials for logging into Lotus Notes inside the Credential Vault. And then we iFrame our email system and we pass the credentials to Lotus Notes from the Credential Vault. So when our users log into mypulse, they don’t have to log into email. They can simply click the email link and a lightbox will show our Lotus Notes email client.” My Stats The My Stats portlet was configured to provide physicians with two pieces of information: the Patient Satisfaction Snapshot and the Productivity Snapshot. “We survey a subset of our patients and the data that we get back from the surveys is available for each physician under the Patient Satisfaction Snapshot. Prior to deploying the Open Text solution, all this data was entered in Excel spreadsheets and mailed to the directors and then presented at meetings. Now it’s being delivered through the Builder application in a more personal fashion,” says Eterovich. “For the Productivity Snapshot, we basically take what we’re billing for each of their patient visits, compare it to the hours they work, and through calculations determine productivity levels,” says Eterovich. Many of the physicians really appreciate the My Stats portlet because they didn’t previously have access to this data. EMP’s intranet, optimized for the mobile experience.
  4. 4. Visit online.opentext.com for more information about Open Text solutions. Open Text is a publicly traded company on both NASDAQ (OTEX) and the TSX (OTC). Copyright © 2010 by Open Text Corporation. Trademarks or registered trademarks of Open Text Corporation. This list is not exhaustive. All other trademarks or registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners. All rights reserved. 10MACU0168EN customer success story My check For paychecks, EMP developed a portlet called My Check. The paychecks are exported into TIFF files from the Great Plains software used by the accounting department. “We created a process that is basically a combination of Business Integration Studio and Builder. We leverage Business Integration Studio quite a bit, not only for its file transmission capabilities, but also for its Web service capabilities. A lot of our applications run off of Web services that we’ve built through Business Integration Studio. I can’t overstate how important it is.” Eterovich adds, “In order to get our system up when we needed to, we didn’t want to change any of the other applications that we were using, because if we did that, we wouldn’t have been able to launch the site as quickly as we did. We used Business Integration Studio as the connector between those applications and Portal. That really helped speed up the development and implementation of Portal.” User feedback key to success Gathering user feedback was an important first step before EMP built the portal site and added the collection of portlets. “It really came down to what our users wanted. To get that information, we created a suggestion box using a Builder app on Portal and that’s where we got a lot of our feedback. We created a ‘win an iPhone contest,’ so whoever submitted the best ideas won an iPhone,” says Eterovich. “That suggestion box really helped drive a lot of the ideas.” Eterovich recommends that other companies take a similar approach. “Right off the bat, you should be thinking of ways to engage your users. That was very important to us. Also, the flexibility of shifting as the feedback came in, which was critical, instead of heading down a path that was predetermined. The suggestion box gave us a lot of feedback and it also gave everybody insight into the direction of the site.” Benefits are easily identified With their Open Text deployment, not only has EMP recognized financial benefits, the system has also enabled the physicians to work more efficiently and effectively. “We’re no longer mailing paychecks, so this is a financial benefit for us. Additionally, our physicians’ time is being used much more effectively. They no longer need to dig for information. Also, now that we’ve moved our Coder Communication process from a paper-based system to an electronic system, we’re cutting down the response time for our Coder Communications in half,” says Eterovich. Employee training was minimal.“Even though many of the physicians aren’t very computer literate, and can struggle with the simplest of Web sites, we were able to introduce these new features without any formal training. Given our user base, it was important that we made this site as simple and intuitive as possible. This is not to discredit our physicians. Their primary focus is patient care, not IT.” Conclusion “At the end of the day, our success comes down to the framework that we’re running on. I don’t think we would have been able to achieve what we did with any other portal framework, at least not with the same man hours and dollars,”says Eterovich.“We’re happy and we continue to look for ways to improve it. We do not want to remain static in terms of the site’s appearance so we are continually looking for ways to evolve and make it a much more appealing experience for our users so that they keep coming back, and hopefully, in turn, we’re making their lives easier.” sales@opentext.com 800 499 6544 www.opentext.com