Designing a Comprehensive Strategy

Don Franklin, Assit. VP-IS, Intermountain Healthcare
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At Intermountain Healthcare, we are using many Microsoft Solutions, including Microsoft Office products, the collaboration  products of Exchange,  Lync and SharePoint, and infrastructure products of Active Directory, Microsoft Server and System  Center Configuration Manager.
 
"In order to avoid unwarranted solution costs, CIO’s should ensure their architects play an active role in the solution  design, paying specific attention to software costs"
 
Although productivity gains exist in all areas, we have seen the most improvement with leveraging enterprise tools with the  Microsoft platform, specifically the employee intranet, document management, collaboration, and enterprise search tools. Our  enterprise document management tool built on SharePoint has created efficiencies by introducing workflows, version  management, and permissioning. Through enterprise  search, we are able to surface content from multiple repositories in a  single interface. Finally, we’ve enhanced collaboration by allowing employees to share and manage documents, calendars, and  task lists through our collaboration sites. By integrating the Microsoft products and making the user interface easier to  use, employees are able to do their jobs more efficiently.
 
Licensing Complexity in the Virtual World In order to avoid unwarranted solution costs, CIO’s should ensure their architects  play an active role in the solution design, paying  specific attention to software costs. Capital and operating costs can be  severely reduced by designing a scalable solution, with the ability to add capacity as needed without service interruption.  This keeps initial solution costs down and allows for growth. In addition, ensure the solution design aligns with your  current  contract licensing language and metrics. Microsoft architects may architect solutions without regarding licenses costs.
 
Through paying close attention to the contract (i.e. per device and/or per processor licensing), you will stay in compliance  and avoid surprising future software costs. This is particularly important, due to the complexity of licensing in a complex  world  of virtualization, software defined data centers and the cloud. People and Framework for Successful Microsoft Solutions In order to have success with any technology solution, Microsoft or the like, it comes down to people and framework. First,  success  comes from having the right people engaged— passionately focused on delivering excellent customer service. Second, it is important to have a framework to tie the technology solution to a real business service or business capability. The key is showing how the Microsoft Solution delivers performance on a dimension that stakeholders find important. Finally, on a more tactical ‘key to success’, having a  well negotiated contract that contemplates the businesses long term strategy is  critical to deploying successful Microsoft Solutions at the lowest appropriate cost.
 
Innovation in Healthcare through Microsoft Lync Intermountain Healthcare developed an innovative Teleservices offering which  runs on the Microsoft Lync platform. Within two days of a proof of concept Intermountain had a life-saving procedure  performed through this collaborative Lync service. As you can imagine, this was an exciting win and why we are in the  healthcare delivery business. The Teleservices solution  takes advantage of Lync’s collaboration foundation, with a custom  developed health delivery interface. The solution is in the implementation process at ICU’s and Emergency rooms throughout  the Intermountain Healthcare enterprise.

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