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IT roadmap helps Midwestern health plan develop a data analytics strategy

May 14, 2018 Case Study 2 min read
Chris Moshier
Medicaid health maintenance organization enhanced their data analytics capability with a strategic IT roadmap focused on developing people, optimizing processes, and leveraging technology.

Staff looking at their IT roamap and data analytics soluions on a tablet computer.

The challenge

The health plan was experiencing growing pains after expanding their member base and provider network. In an industry reliant on managing enormous volumes of data, they were challenged to mature their data analytics capability at the same pace of the business.

The health plan discovered data errors in reports and their IT team was concerned with inconsistent and undocumented processes. After persistent turnover on their data analytics team and a mounting analytics backlog, the health plan knew they needed a clearer IT roadmap and data analytics strategy to mitigate risks to their business and generate greater value from their data.

The solution

Along with the health plan’s leadership, we collaboratively identified focus areas in which to assess the plan’s IT and data analytics maturity. Our team reviewed the health plan’s overall IT operations and performed an assessment of their data analytics capabilities, which spanned people, processes, and technology.

  • People. We conducted one-on-one interviews with their staff in each IT service area. Not only were we collecting information, we fully involved the staff in the solution using formal change management techniques. The interviews uncovered critical skill set gaps and a lack of synergy across the organizational structure of their data analytics team. We provided specific and practical recommendations to improve their culture and develop or better align staff skills. This included refocusing work performed by each analytics team member on more specialized tasks that aligned with their core competencies leading to greater fulfillment.
  • Process. We identified numerous risks and inefficiencies in the health plan’s current data management processes. In fact, the health plan learned their staff spent more time fixing issues than making progress on a backlog of enhancements to grow the business or maintain compliance. They had also outgrown their IT governance model. We helped establish a stronger data governance and improved portfolio management through uncovering critical risks in an undocumented analytics process and prioritizing tactical action steps to mediate.
  • Technology. We assessed the health plan’s use of data analytics technologies. Through our process, we highlighted why relying on custom-developed analytics tools and disparate analytics platforms is unsustainable. We helped to design a sustainable yet flexible analytics toolkit that met the diverse needs of staff throughout the organization and increased access to the organization’s data.

The benefit

The health plan was able to design a practical, strategic roadmap to improve its IT service delivery and generate greater value from its data. The new organizational structure improved collaboration between their data analytics team and other IT and business staff. By including staff in the solution, we helped improve their organizational culture. Their new data management processes shift analytics staff time from break-fix activities to more strategic, value-added tasks, which also increase staff fulfilment.

Most importantly, the strategic IT roadmap has allowed the health plan to mitigate critical risks in their data analytics and reporting processes while strengthening end-user confidence in their data. Their efforts have fostered a data-driven culture for continued success and growth.

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