IT Science Case Study: Logging In for Health Care Made Better

AvMed’s legacy login experience lacked design appeal and was divided over multiple sites. This created a cumbersome login experience for users, so Liferay came to the rescue.

Healthcare.IT

Here is the latest article in a new eWEEK feature series called IT Science, in which we look at what actually happens at the intersection of new-gen IT and legacy systems.

Unless it’s brand new and right off various assembly lines, servers, storage and networking inside every IT system can be considered “legacy.” This is because the iteration of both hardware and software products is speeding up all the time. It’s not unusual for an app-maker, for example, to update and/or patch for security purposes an application a few times a month, or even a week. Some apps are updated daily! Hardware moves a little slower, but manufacturing cycles are also speeding up.

These articles describe new-gen industry solutions. The idea is to look at real-world examples of how new-gen IT products and services are making a difference in production each day. Most of them are success stories, but there will also be others about projects that blew up. We’ll have IT integrators, system consultants, analysts and other experts helping us with these as needed.

Today’s Topic: New, More Efficient Login Needed for Health Care Provider’s Website

This article is about AvMed, a provider of commercial, individual and Medicare health coverage to more than 380,000 Floridians in 30 counties throughout the state, which needed to create a new login experience that would increase engagement and allow marketing to modify the site directly.

Name the problem to be solved: AvMed’s legacy login experience lacked design appeal and was divided over multiple sites: avmed.org, Medicare and Embrace Better Health. This created a cumbersome login experience for users. In addition, the site was hard coded, meaning that any content adjustment required marketing to make a request from IT, instead of being empowered to directly implement changes.

Describe the strategy that went into finding the solution: AvMed partnered with Rivet Logic, which helps organizations develop personalized, multi-channel digital solutions, to find a solution that would address AvMed’s needs. With an internal IT staff of fewer than 10 people, the team needed a solution that was both flexible and scalable. It also needed to be a solution that could integrate with third-party applications. In short, AvMed “needed to build on a platform that allowed the experience to undergo continual enhancement and improvement,” said Ana Eberhard, Vice President of AvMed Member Experience. The team settled on Liferay for its flexibility and the capability to build and deploy multiple portals separately.

List the key components in the solution: AvMed only needed to use the Liferay platform, which serves as both an enterprise portal and web content manager.

Describe how the deployment went, perhaps how long it took, and if it came off as planned: AvMed and Rivet Logic were able to launch the first new portal in just a few months, with plans to modernize additional portals in the future. In addition, a number of helpful third-party applications could be supported on the new site, including a translation engine to provide a Spanish version of the site and a web accessibility tool making content screen reader compatible for blind and visually impaired users.

Describe the result, new efficiencies gained, and what was learned from the project: After the site updates, current and past resources were easier to browse and find through the use of categories and tags. This allowed AvMed to better market its content and services to interested parties. Customer experience also improved as users were presented with a clean, mobile-friendly dashboard that surfaced relevant information right away. Finally, content updates could now be managed by marketing, reducing the demands on AvMed’s internal IT department.

Describe ROI, carbon footprint savings, and staff time savings, if any: As a result of the deployment the number of monthly visits to AvMed’s site increased from approximately 210,000 to 250,000 and the number of unique monthly visitors increased from just more than 80,000 to 110,000 year over year. During the same period, the percentage of new visitors also increased, from 31 percent to 34 percent of site visits. Finally, call center volume dropped from 17,479 to 13,923 in one month, saving AvMed tens of thousands of dollars in costs each quarter.

More information:

If you have a suggestion for an IT Science feature, email cpreimesberger@eweek.com.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor of Features & Analysis at eWEEK, responsible in large part for the publication's coverage areas. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he...