TL;DR: Know about the benefits of integrating and managing your multi-vendor outsourcing environment for performance and efficiency!
Outsourcing IT services: An Opportunity to Connect Individuals with Appropriate Care
Omnicare has been a leading provider of pharmacy services to the senior care sector for more than three decades. With more than 200 locations in the US, the company helps provide long-term care facilities and independent senior populations with a wide range of specially packaged medications and pharmacy-related services to encourage patients to make healthy decisions.
To further cement itself as a leader in the healthcare industry, Omnicare is dedicated to technology advancements that expand the company and importantly are beneficial to patients. A cohesive operations and pharmacy services team is essential, but many technical staff members were occupied with maintaining the current IT infrastructure. Many of the technical employees’ working hours were spent managing the company’s existing IT environment, which included more than 1,500 servers and 12,000 workstations.
In order to resolve this problem, Omnicare decided to outsource the ongoing management of its IT services and infrastructure. As a result, internal technical team members would be made available for high-value strategic initiatives involving pharmacy services. Omnicare uses three main service providers: one for its voice/data network support and maintenance, one for its PC refresh program, and a third for the support and maintenance of Omnicare’s applications, data center infrastructure, and service desk that is provided round-the-clock, every day of the year.
Maintain High Service Levels with Transparent Service Provider Environments
There was, however, a significant caveat. Extremely high service levels were already being delivered by Omnicare’s existing IT team, and it was necessary to maintain them, for which Omnicare needed complete visibility and control over all of its service providers. To ensure that the pharmacy service experience was unaffected, the company also had to make outsourcing visible to its users.
Kim Liston, Senior Director, IT Service Management at Omnicare, says that,
“My philosophy on IT customer service is straightforward. There’s one place to contact, and that’s the service desk. It’s up to the service desk to solve the customer’s problem. It doesn’t matter if there are multiple vendors involved— services have to be seamlessly integrated from the end user’s perspective.”
Utilize ServiceNow: Optimize Your Outsourced IT Environment
For this multi-vendor service integration and management (SIAM), Omnicare selected the Now Platform. ServiceNow was an easy choice for Omnicare to manage its outsourced environment – as it was already being used for incident management, problem management, configuration management, service catalog, and more.
“By extending ServiceNow to manage our IT service providers, we could maintain the same level of automation, visibility, process discipline, and service quality. And we didn’t have to start from scratch—we already had a solid, consistent foundation in place.” Kim Liston, Senior Director, IT Service Management
ServiceNow: A Single, Efficient Service Delivery Platform Improving Resolution Rate
Currently, a comprehensive service integration and management (SIAM) solution is provided by the Now Platform, which manages Omnicare’s multi-vendor outsourcing environment. For instance, ServiceNow directs an incident reported by a user through the self-service portal to the appropriate outsourced vendor.
ServiceNow, in some cases, sends the incident over a web services interface to the vendor’s management system, and in other cases, the vendor uses Omnicare’s ServiceNow system on its own. ServiceNow is updated and the incident is closed after the vendor resolves it. Service requests are handled similarly, including obtaining the required permits.
Using best practices such as timestamping vendor handoff points, ServiceNow tracks the incident or request’s progress throughout the process, even when multiple vendors are involved.
According to Kim, “ServiceNow shows us which vendor owns an incident or request at any given time—so there’s no finger-pointing or confusion. We get accurate SLA reporting for each vendor, along with detailed metrics that let us pinpoint and resolve issues. And the results have been extraordinary—for example, our first-contact resolution rate has actually gone up from 85% to 90.1%.”
Enhance Your Service Improvements and Vendor Relationships with ServiceNow
The capabilities of ServiceNow SIAM go beyond incidents and service requests. Also, Omnicare now manages issues among vendors using ServiceNow. After Omnicare creates a problem record in ServiceNow, it allocates tasks and follow-up dates to individual vendors. This enables them to lead the problem-solving process while consistently enhancing the quality of the services they deliver.
To track assets among vendors, Omnicare additionally makes use of ServiceNow. For example, it keeps track of laptops as they are bought by Omnicare, sent to the desktop outsourcer’s depot, and then given out to Omnicare users.
ServiceNow assists Omnicare in managing its contractual and monetary connections with its providers of outsourced services. For instance, Omnicare reconciles monthly invoices from outsourcing vendors using data from ServiceNow.
Another primary key is enhancement requests. When Omnicare requests new functionality for a system from an outsourcing vendor, the vendor directly logs the time spent on the enhancement against the related service request in ServiceNow.
Kim sums it up this way, “With IT outsourcing, you must have consistent maintenance and support processes—with measurement points at every step along the way. ServiceNow lets us drive these processes across vendors and gives us the visibility we need to deliver high-quality services to our users.”
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Source: Omnicare integrates approach to pharmacy services with ServiceNow