FitLyfe has prepared this case study to highlight the importance of having a sound implementation process that we have used with our clients to evolve from short-term goals to long-term success.
The current prevailing practice in the health and wellness market sector is that providers design a “nice looking” but very rigid solution, which is pushed to the masses. While these solutions pass the initial optics and cosmetics tests, plan sponsors are often shielded from the real experience of how this will meet their health and wellness strategic goals and objectives. In truth, the real experience is the technology hasn’t been developed to meet your plan design; rather, it will function great…so long as you adapt your plan design to match their technology. That is the hard fact that far too many have had to recognize, after the marketing glitter and sizzle have faded into reality.
The customer involved in this particular case study is an Iowa-based manufacturer that had experienced sub-standard performance from their previous vendor-partner. Specifically, planning in terms of annual goals and measurable outcomes at the vendor level was virtually nonexistent. Their engagement rate had stagnated at roughly 25% of the total population. After numerous requests from the customer for their then-vendor to strategically assist in program evaluation and redesign efforts (and with no meaningful response from said vendor), the decision was made to outreach to the market for consultation to “test what was out there” without going through a full RFP process. FitLyfe responded, began our routine process for client engagement, and was awarded the contract after a few simple, yet very thoughtful, meetings.
FitLyfe’s belief is that technology is a supportive instrument which should execute on and discharge the goals of the organization. Taking a cookie-cutter approach will not achieve your objectives and guarantees that you and your members will only be participants in someone else’s program, not your own. So, what was FitLyfe’s approach in this case? Let’s outline it.
To have a successful relationship, we at FitLyfe knew that we had to take time to discover the client’s goals, review their cultural needs, evaluate their current gaps, assess success factors and build those into long-term measurable plans and scorecards. This variety of detail was collected at the point of initial engagement through our Wellness Impact Analysis. This time-tested, structured process that FitLyfe has developed is designed to capture each client’s health and wellness DNA, which is then operationalized and distilled into an Implementation Plan specific to YOU. And, it allows us to do so with swift execution in order to minimize the time-drain on you and your staff. We know very well that customers are like snowflakes, no two are alike. Further, making an ill-informed decision to deploy carbon-copy programming across our entire book of business guarantees dissatisfaction, sub-par performance, and is actually an insult to you and your members because success is in the details. The program has to be nuanced to act as an extension of your organization. It can’t be viewed or performed as some foreign entity. This is exactly what occurred with this particular client. We took the collected information and related data and transformed them into an actionable three-year program plan, allowing for planned reflection points to evaluate performance and make adjustments to remain on target for engagement increases.
Structured Implementation and Deployment
As mentioned before, the information pulled from the Wellness Impact Analysis, as well as, the client’s plan design documents were used by FitLyfe’s staff to lay the framework for how their program would be configured in our 360 Platform. Milestones, deadlines, content, testing, and training activities were all laid out in a concise but comprehensive plan. We worked closely with their program management during this phase to ensure their vision actually came through to reality. The goal here was that they did not suffer surprises or disappointments when the Platform went live for member participation. This planning process included capturing data from previous carriers, setting communication schedules to employees, establishing annual seminar and activity challenge calendars, etc…the total turnkey at point of delivery and launch. We even negotiated data exchange rates with the previous carrier that attempted to issue a charge of $10,000 for a historic data dump of the client’s records. The carrier made it sound like a huge task; we knew better—that is was nothing more than pairing two existing tables in their portal that would take no more than 5-7 minutes. The carrier waived the fee.
Quality Feedback Loop
FitLyfe knows that the only way to ensure long-term satisfaction is to solicit feedback from key stakeholder groups within your organization. At intervals determined by them, we delivered surveys to participants, plan administrators, and key leaders in the organization. This information was used for two main purposes: 1) To measure and track our performance against the predetermined scorecard targets; and 2) To set a continuous feedback loop that assessed what elements could be refined, changed, or introduced to improve member satisfaction and program performance. By tightly managing this key performance area, we found that slight adjustments could be made to the incentive structure and minor modifications to the technology would allow the solution to best support the plan design and outcomes goals, which together yielded the results in the coming paragraph.
Through this process we were able to course correct on some key areas, which resulted in the engagement leaps the client was looking for all along: From the prior vendor’s ceiling of 25%, we were able to move our Year-1 engagement to 60% and Year-2 to 84%. While the performance in Year-1 of the FitLyfe program was greatly improved over the previous provider, it was only through the aggressive collection and analysis of data which helped press the engagement rates in Year-2 to be more in-line with the client’s expectations and our standards. Having followed the above process numerous times, we have successfully contracted with and deployed health and wellness solutions for new customers. But, probably most importantly, we have used it to ease the transitional burden on customers that have chosen to leave previous cookie-cutter wellness carriers due to performance and general dissatisfaction issues. Your health and wellness program should never place a drain on your health. At FitLyfe, we make sure of that from inception to deployment though long-term operations.