In 2014, the Australian government introduced a major overhaul to the funding and regulation of the Aged Care industry. Competition has intensified and the burden of compliance has risen. Many operators are struggling and a number have gone out of business.
ResidentSelect is an integrated platform combining CRM, financial modelling and customised contract production all tailored specifically to Aged Care.
Define & Visualise
Tip Toeing Around the Gorillas
As competition intensifies, the role of an Aged Care admissions officer has become critical to the viability of providers. What was previously a somewhat casual role to “give tours” now encompasses being able to sell effectively, answer questions around complex payment models and ensure contracts are drafted and signed.
Launching a CRM in the modern era means competing with software giants like Microsoft and Salesforce. Working with a limited budget, we helped Linda to understand what’s common in CRM systems and to identify ways to compete by offering benefits specific to Aged Care.
The following three areas were identified:
A CRM tailored to the Resident / Family Member Relationship
Aged Care is unique in that the consumer of a product (e.g. a single or couple requiring care) are typically not the purchaser. The person making the buying decision is most commonly a daughter, son or other family member.
With contract drafting and signing normally being a drawn out process, it’s not uncommon for facilities to admit a resident before contracts are signed. However, should a resident die soon after entering care, the facility can be left chasing family members for funds but without the security of a contract.
Due to the complexity of government regulations providers often find it difficult to give clients an accurate quote for the cost of their care. In many cases, after touring a facility, prospective residents are directed to financial planners to understand the costs of care.
We wanted a tool which enabled the same staff who gave a tour to give prospects three simple price alternatives (e.g. all upfront, all ongoing or a mix) on the day of their visit.
By offering instant contract generation, we help to drastically reduce risk to Aged Care providers.
We used detailed UI design process for the CRM & Contract Generation components and a series of Excel Spreadsheets for the financial calculators to define and visualise the platform.
A creative approach to rigorous testing
Linda, demonstrated our proposed UI designs to colleagues from a select group of providers. The review process yielded a number of actionable insights and focused our initial efforts on the CRM and Financial aspects of the system.
A creative approach to rigorous testing
The CRM and contract generation components of the system were technically straightforward and for these we simply followed a cycle of build sprints and regular client demonstrations.
The complexity in the system is the financial calculators. Unlike when selling real estate the pricing presented to a prospective resident is influenced both by the needs of both the resident and the provider. The pressure to “get it right” is extreme, with both consumers and providers relying on the system to calculate correctly in a wide variety of circumstances.
We created a unique approach to testing. We built a process for admin staff to set up numerous test scenarios and download the data for each of these scenarios in spreadsheet format. Then, after every system change, we “re-ran” these known scenario’s and compared the expected and actual outputs. This process allows us to quickly run dozens of test scenarios and ensure the calculations are accurate.
Maintain and Evolve
In the two years since its launch we’ve continued to enhance and evolve the platform including updates to reporting, new calculators and new contracts.
Resident Select is now an industry leader for resident admissions. Admissions officers now have confidence to provide pricing information on the spot. For facilities this has both increased occupancy and decreased risk (no more ‘back of the envelope’ calculations).
We’ve also taken a contract management process that takes many providers months to complete and made it instant, also reducing the risk of through nonpayment. Importantly, residents and their families are now being given a variety of payment options making care for elderly Australians easier to understand and afford.
I’m not very technical, but now I run a highly profitable software business thanks to Alliance’s help. I’d highly recommend Alliance to anyone looking for web programming.
Linda Murray – Founder, Resident Select