One of the challenges IT leaders faced in the past, was not being integrated into every business process. Chief Information Officers mentioned that “IT was treated as a support function instead of a business partner.” (Iyer, 2020)
Today, IT is considered an integral part of most businesses as it has proven to be vital to success. IT is interwoven with small and big decisions of a company through effective data management, problem solving, and enhanced monitoring and marketing strategies among many others.
IT teams are now providing emotional support
IT’s role has become increasingly important as they quickly adjust to meet the ever-growing needs of their teams and customers alike. This made them more flexible and adaptive as they became more involved in different departments. Another role they have taken on is providing emotional support to maintain the mental wellbeing of staff. As today’s situation keeps many families apart, people have extra emotional baggage they take with them to work.
An IT leader and their team help mitigate this situation through apps, chat platforms, and expanded virtual private network capabilities to provide a sense of security that will help them cope. What’s good about these methods is how they apply to different situations we’re experiencing. The role of IT leaders has expanded dramatically and they are becoming more recognized for the different hats they wear to keep businesses up and running.
As IT leaders become more recognized, here are some that have been at the forefront of change and innovation to help us during this pandemic.
Maxicare is known as one of the largest health maintenance organizations (HMO) in the Philippines because of its commitment to building a better healthcare system in the country. They provide carefully crafted healthcare programs through their trusted network of medical providers coupled with enhanced customer support.
Despite the unnerving effects of COVID-19, Maxicare was able to prioritize the safety of their employees to make sure that they are safe and prepared to work. Through their partnership with Third Pillar, they successfully transitioned to a work-from-home set up and came up with two ways to help their employees adjust and adapt to working from home.
- Salesforce Service Cloud to orchestrate all customer support services and handle continuity of care.
- Maxicare created a “Maxicare WoW (Ways of Working)” microsite complete with learning tools that will help the employees with setting up home networks, access systems, and leverage user productivity tools for better collaboration.
By taking this approach, Maxicare was able to ensure that business processes would still be efficient while still providing their employees with unwavering care and support.
The Singaporean-based company prides itself in their top-notch solutions through the management of meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) venues. They also manage the Singapore EXPO Convention and Exhibition Centre, and the MAX Atria that hosts about 600 events per year. The global pandemic redirected their focus to finding a different purpose for their venues and paying closer attention to digital transformation since physical events were put on hold indefinitely.
They used the Singapore EXPO & MAX Atria as a temporary community care facility to accommodate more COVID-19 patients. Then, they used Service Cloud and Community Cloud to make a digital command centre to manage their operations and ensure that frontline workers are able to care for the residents. The software helped the staff stay on top of the day-to-day incidents, acting as a case management system. There was a single view of them all which promoted better customer service, shorter resolution times, and allowed them to prioritize the right things.
SingEx is now studying the other ways Service Cloud and Community Cloud can improve and revamp their current work processes to ensure they are always evolving as a company.
Bako Diagnostics specializes in providing diagnostic and therapeutic services for the podiatric medical community. The company now facilitates over 3,000 COVID-19 tests a day, which makes it difficult to balance it with reaching government officials and hospital systems. To still be able to reach their goals despite COVID-19, they used Salesforce Care products to target their messages and sales outreach to the right people at the right time all over the world. With the help of Pardot, they can utilize educational messaging about their around-the-clock COVID testing while still providing high quality customer service. They also used Salesforce Maps to target areas that will most likely see infection spikes, and Social Studio will identify problem areas like where additional testing and faster turnaround time are needed.
Fruit Street Health
Fruit Street Health is a leading telehealth software company who delivers diabetes prevention programs (DPP) and weight loss programs to their customers.
In response to COVID-19, they launched CovidMD, a risk assessment, triage, and telemedicine platform meant to help the healthcare system respond more efficiently to the ongoing pandemic. This service was built on Service Cloud and helps track sources of exposure, pre-existing health conditions, and a health risk score for each person. CovidMD’s. Based on that score, patients are then given personalized health recommendations and the option to connect with a healthcare provider via live video chat.
St. Francis Healthcare System
St. Francis Healthcare System is a Catholic institution that is dedicated to providing accessible and quality care to all members of their community. They had several services available for their target customers but due to COVID-19, their needs changed and brought a new challenge to the company. St. Francis turned to Salesforce Field Service Lightning to put an operational brand new meal delivery program in place. They coordinated with local restaurants and drivers for smooth dispatch and delivery to the homes of the seniors. Field Service Lightning enables the company’s call center to track calls using Salesforce Health Cloud. This made it much easier to assign deliveries, optimize routing and driving time which allowed for efficient task completion. In three months time, St. Francis was able to deliver over 50,000 meals.
These show that IT leaders are practically at the core of employee and customer relations. From simply managing data to helping protect lives through technology, IT leaders are needed everywhere. To find better areas of focus for them, we use a framework called the “three Rs”.
- Reassurance: IT leaders should be able to let their colleagues know that they are handling and controlling operations well despite the multiple tasks assigned to their IT team.
- Redistribution: As IT services become more needed in the company, the IT leader should quickly and effectively delegate tasks to the rest of the team and assign them to the different facets of the business to make sure that everything is up and running. Redistributing them will also show them other parts they can improve for continued success.
- Rebound: This factor identifies opportunities for improvement, how technology can be better integrated into the business, and what channels they can maximize. IT leaders will be better at their role if they take these into consideration.
IT leaders have never been more important and more needed as they continue to maximize business opportunities while ensuring the safety of their stakeholders at the same time. Their work builds trust not just within the business, but also with partners and customers.