Hospital Goes Google for Workplace Cloud Collaboration

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“The move has made Hurley Medical Center one of the first hospitals to elevate to the next level of productivity, collaboration, efficiency and success through Google Workspace.”

Workplace cloud collaboration has become more than a buzzword at Hurley Medical Center. It’s a way of life after the center’s employees, both administrative and clinical, needed a change in how they worked and communicated. The system they were using just didn’t give them what they needed.

Leaders in both areas agreed they wanted to leave the Flint, Michigan-based hospital’s legacy, on-premise Microsoft Office environment behind. Why? They wanted to boost productivity, collaboration and efficiency across the organization. And they wanted to go paperless to stay in step with today’s Electronic Medical Record (EMR) adoption model.

Hurley CIO Casey Bryson led the dynamic team that was responsible for this massive workplace transformation to a cloud-first workplace at the hospital.

“Our technical and security teams sought a better solution to our Microsoft platform for many reasons,” Bryson explained. “It was time-consuming to manage and keep updated and secure. And it hindered, rather than helped, organization-wide productivity.”

Modernizing and Upgrading

In a field where many health organizations still cling to antiquated IT methodology, Bryson and his team knew they also wanted the medical center to lead the way, transforming the way hospitals work.

Hurley had implemented an EMR solution several years ago in a move to cut costs, streamline operations and maximize its data so it could improve patient safety and outcomes. Only 6.4 percent of U.S. hospitals have achieved the highest level (stage 7) of this adoption;Hurley is one of them.

With an increased focus on digital data and EMRs, the need for a better computing environment that would effortlessly and securely support this model quickly became apparent to leadership at Hurley.

Hospital officials knew they needed to move away from an on-premise environment, instead adopting a cloud computing model to foster a paperless environment and increase workplace productivity. And they wanted to do it quickly.

Plotting the Transformation

Onix, with the help of partner Google Cloud, stepped up, conducting two days of immersive discovery workshops across all departments to determine what solution would place Hurley Medical Center on this trajectory.

During the process, the Onix team looked at end-user activity to determine how teams were functioning within the existing Microsoft platform, and examined the technology barriers they encountered both in the office and when working remotely. This included everything from scheduling — to data sharing — to collaboration and communication.

The team also walked Hurley’s executives through the distinct benefits of Going Google versus laboring along with Microsoft.

“We said, ‘Show us how you work today, and we’ll show you how we can re-engineer those business processes and workflows using Google productivity tools to make your life that much easier and give you the flexibility, productivity and mobility that you’re looking for,’” said Onix Account Manager, George Shihadeh. “That really struck a chord and generated some great feedback during the sessions.”

Transforming with Google Workspace

At the end of this intensive evaluation period, all signs pointed to Google Workspace. Hurley’s leadership understood they could quickly realize a return on investment when they opted to Go Google, moving away from the Microsoft environment.

By moving to the cloud, they would eliminate thousands of dollars in licensing fees while changing for the better the way they worked.

Hurley chose to implement Google Workspace for 3,700 users organization-wide. Hurley, Onix and Google solidified the partnership in late 2017, launching the project in January 2018. Onix and Hurley worked together to deploy Google Workspace in less than four months, bringing all sides of the business, the IT and medical teams together through technology.

As a case in point, as Google Cloud recently reported, the workplace cloud collaboration solution has improved scheduling efficiencies across all Hurley Medical Center departments, saving supervisors as much as 30 minutes each day.

How? Instead of using the former on-premise spreadsheet program to manage staff scheduling, teams now use Google Sheets to automatically populate data with shared Google Calendars, showing when employees are available.

This system also allows inpatients with testing or rehab sessions to see when they are scheduled, displayed on a 75-inch monitor using Google Chrome Sign Builder, a free signage app, to show content from a Chromebook or other Chrome device in the back office.

Migrating to Google Workspace reduced the time and costs that come with managing complicated legacy licensing, and also boosted security for sensitive data. At Hurley, the move to Google Workspace means the hospital can continue delivering high-quality healthcare, bolstered by the latest technologies in its state-of-the-art facilities.

“We eliminated the need to manage Microsoft Exchange locally, which was antiquated and a burden on our technical and security teams,” Bryson said. “The move has made Hurley Medical Center one of the first hospitals to securely elevate to the next level of productivity, collaboration, efficiency and success through Google Workspace.”

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