Continued Innovation through ServiceNow Powers a Safe Return to Work

With a sweeping ServiceNow HRSD transformation already under its belt, this Fortune 500 Healthcare Payer was better prepared than most to weather the rapid changes brought on by COVID-19. At the start of 2020, healthcare organizations were already under immense pressure from the consistent consumerization of medicine alongside rapid technological advancements. All of these challenges came to a head following the outbreak of COVID-19, and further solidified this organization’s belief that continuous improvement is the key to long-term success. 

With a workforce of over 40,000, the company trusted ServiceNow to help them adapt quickly to a sustainable Work from Home model and provide support to their employees in any way they needed.   

From the start of the pandemic, the company began taking advantage of ServiceNow’s ability to stay flexible and nimble when rapidly implementing new solutions. In fact, Acorio used ServiceNow to deploy an Employee Relief Fund for the client in a little over one week. The fund ultimately gave away over $825,000 in extra relief for employees who were tasked with caring for family during the height of the pandemic.  

Returning to Work: The Pursuit of an Out-of-the-Box Solution

The organization was unaccustomed to working from home, with most of their workforce used to working on-site in a unique campus-style culture. The company’s IT desk was hit hard by the sudden need to go virtual and knew that ServiceNow had the functionality they needed to provide fast relief and automate manual processes.  

Not solely a Healthcare Payer, the company also owns and operates several clinics in which employees never truly transitioned to a Work from Home (WFH) model. The process of designing their hybrid work model was iterative and required integrations with multiple tools and continued flexibility throughout the past 18 months.  

Like other trailblazing organizations the world over, they began devising a Return to Work (RTW) plan as soon as their employees were sent home. Just like their initial WFH strategy, their RTW plan is a long-term, iterative process that prioritizes their employees and customers.  

To facilitate a safe and effective RTW plan, the company rolled out a series of projects that would guarantee their employees a safe and smooth transition back to the physical workplace. They craved an Out-of-the-Box (OOB) solution in ServiceNow that would allow them to: 

  • Track employee COVID-19 exposure and test results 
  • Grant employees approval to enter office sites 
  • Gauge employee readiness to return on-site 
  • Track vaccination status  

The Anatomy of a Successful Return to Work Plan

Monitoring Risk

In Phase 1 of their RTW process, the Fortune 500 hired nurses to operate stations where they could screen for symptoms of COVID-19 and measure employees’ temperatures. If a nurse identified an employee as high-risk, a case was created in ServiceNow that would revoke the employee’s badge access to physical work sites until they could be cleared by a medical professional to return.  

As the Healthcare Payer expanded their RTW plan, the additional cost of hiring enough nurses to operate the stations became prohibitive. The solution was simple – an integration between ServiceNow and a series of kiosks where employees could complete self-service questionnaires and measure their temperatures. If the kiosk identified an employee as high-risk, the same process would immediately be triggered, creating a case in ServiceNow and revoking their badge access until they were approved to return.  

This first solution in ServiceNow successfully automated a series of processes that were being completed manually. Before, employees needed to email the help desk to inform them of any COVID-19 exposure or positive tests, and then badge access would be manually revoked. With their new solution, badge access is revoked immediately through automated workflows in ServiceNow.  

Measuring Employee Readiness

While the kiosk integration enabled essential employees to safely work on-site, the company set their sights on gauging wider employee readiness to return to the office. In doing so, they could also educate their team members on how the RTW plan would be rolled out, set expectations, and monitor any long-term concerns employees had. 

With this in mind, the organization launched a campaign in ServiceNow that worked as follows: 

  • First, an email informs employees that they’re eligible to return to work.  
  • When the employee logs into the Service Portal, a banner is displayed that prompts them to watch a video that outlines next steps.  
  • Once the video is watched, a survey is triggered to gauge employee readiness to return to the office.  
  • Once the survey is finished, another is launched to collect any concerns about returning to the physical workspace. If an employee responded that they needed assistance returning to work due to any barriers, a case would be created for them.
  • If the employee has no hesitance to return to the office, they will be guided on next steps to return to the workplace. 

“With this project, we really pushed the borders of what a campaign can do.” – Project Consultant, Acorio 

Tracking Vaccination Status

The Healthcare Payer then turned their attention to tracking employee vaccination status within ServiceNow. The new solution needed to be iterative, quick to deploy, and integrate seamlessly with other tools in order to accurately track vaccination status across all of their physical sites and business units.  

Acorio implemented a solution in ServiceNow that prompts employees to submit vaccination status via self-service, granting leadership visibility into exactly how many employees have been fully or partially vaccinated. Their OOB solution included: 

  • Custom table  
  • New HR Service 
  • New Record Producer 
  • Two notifications 
  • Report 
  • Update to the HR Profile

When it came to this full-scale RTW plan, constant iteration and flexibility were key. For example, the Fortune 500 initially launched their vaccine tracking solution before the approval of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Because their solution was completely scalable and OOB, they were able to quickly update it to include the option of the new vaccine.  

Looking to the Future

Acorio and the Healthcare Payer successfully launched a full-scale Return to Work plan, all while avoiding heavy customizations and additional licenses. Because each solution remained OOB, the organization can now reuse them in the unfortunate event of a future pandemic or other emergencies.  

Always looking to improve its Employee Experience, this client is still actively designing its hybrid work model as we move further into 2021. They recognize that the future of work will look vastly different than it did 18 months ago and are actively pursuing opportunities to better enable their employees to work from home, the office, or a mixture of both.