Jessica Turnblom's blog

A Prescription for Digital Communications in Healthcare

Mobile phone apps allow consumers to do a multitude of activities from tracking their shipments to counting their steps to banking. With the abundance of information that can be made accessible in real-time, it is no surprise that patients are becoming increasingly frustrated with the lack of digital communications in healthcare. If there was an industry where information is vital, it’s healthcare. Unfortunately, the transition to digital communications in healthcare has been slow compared to many less impactful industries. As a result, patients expectations with regards to the communications from healthcare providers and while at healthcare facilities are not being met. The healthcare industry, like all other industries, is in the midst of a digital revolution, as patients favor and demand technologically-current options. It’s time for healthcare to step up and transform into a more digitally-enabled domain. Real-Time Information Enhances Patient Satisfaction Today, instant gratification can be directly linked to satisfaction. Individuals can access data about the current temperature or their bank account balance with just a few taps. Meanwhile, when it comes to information as basic as wait times, or as essential as test results, the health care industry is archaic in response. Implementing a digital communications system indicating wait time for patients or portals that allow patients to receive, review, and share medical information digitally; while they are being implemented in some healthcare facilities, they aren’t widely adopted currently. These types of basic changes not only improve patient experience and satisfaction they also have an impact on the overall efficiency of the healthcare operation by enabling employees to move their focus from relaying information to more value add services. Integrated Digital Communications Streamlines Processes In other industries, accessible data transforms instant gratification into streamlining. For example, smart phone apps allow consumers to simply speak the name of a restaurant and receive instant feedback with location and directions, hours of operation, and contact information. For consumers, that means the process of getting their lunch or dinner is streamlined. The healthcare industry can leverage smartphones and wearable devices for consumers’ well-being. Integrating data from wearable devices into medical records could allow healthcare providers to monitor and personalize patients’ activities related to health and fitness, for instance. With data that’s integrated and even monitored from afar, medicine could also grow in efficiency and effectiveness. Leveraging Digital Communication Makes Healthcare More Convenient Telemedicine is another exciting avenue in the digitization of healthcare communications. It was listed as a top priority by two-thirds of healthcare professionals in a 2016 Reach Health study. Cisco, in a report on The Digitization of the Healthcare Industry, explains that telemedicine improves patient experience through convenience and accessibility while enhancing provider experience by reducing demands on time, data entry, and more. Digital communications are disrupting the healthcare industry as patients expectations continue to increase and evolve. Healthcare providers need to continually be evaluating and integrating new technologies in order to meet the evolving expectations of patients and employees. Digital communications provide an excellent way to improve the overall experience for patients and providers.  

Empower More Informed Decisions with Omnivex

Energize Your Business and Empower More Informed Decisions with Omnivex Information leads people to make better decisions, yet traditional IT systems can create silos and bottleneck information. Omnivex solves business communications issues by delivering targeted, real time information. Your message, your goals, and your information has the power to transform your organization. Omnivex brings the sharing to business for better decisions, for greater accountability, for more education, and continuous inspiration. Digital communications are transforming the world and connecting the right people with the right information when they need it. It can take the shape of breaking news, emergency notifications, and real-time data and metrics. Redefine your organization’s communication with Omnivex. The Omnivex platform manages all aspects of digital communications networks. It enables organizations to easily collect, process, and deliver targeted information across any screen, allowing them to enhance their two most valuable assets: people and data. To learn more, please enjoy the video.   .embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; }  

Creating Mobile Apps is Quick and Easy with Omnivex Ink

Sharing information is vital for any business; increasingly, mobile apps are a popular way for organizations to share their information. Mobile apps are being used for a variety of applications including logging hours or sales, updating the status of machinery, or for interacting with customers. Connected through the Internet of Things (IoT), new uses are seeming to develop daily. As Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, says, “To me, when we say mobile first, it’s not the mobility of the device, it’s actually the mobility of the individual experience.” People should be able to receive or share information on any screen; whether at their desk, in the field, or even out to lunch.  What makes for a good mobile app? A good mobile app will allow you to: Create updates and receive live feedback the moment it hits the screen Be able to easily set up crowd collaboration on any data source, and monitor who is using your data while tracking any changes they are making. Quickly and easily share personalized, real-time information with employees and customers on any device and allow instant feedback Have bidirectional data flow, meaning a refresh button isn’t needed because data is updated instantly A good mobile app will also keep your data secure. It will allow you to maintain full ownership and control of all transmissions through proper encryption, and be sure that all data and content is encrypted, even at rest. Finally, the ideal mobile app should make sharing information easy. Corporate executives, employees, business partners, and customers should find it easy to share and receive real-time information on whatever device they use. This allows everyone to make better informed business decisions. Whether it is business apps for mobile phones, or real-time information on digital screens, organizations need a digital communications platform that enables them to share information in a multitude of ways. Unfortunately, building mobile apps can be quite cost-prohibitive. The median cost of developing iOS apps in North America is around $150/hour, and complex apps take around 28 weeks to build, with design taking approximately 370 hours and backend development up to 2,200 hours. This makes developing mobile apps for internal organizational uses often cost prohibitive. Fortunately, Omnivex Ink enables organization to quickly and easily share personalized, real-time information on any device with employees and customers, and receive instant feedback from them. Whether it is business apps for mobile phones, or real-time information on digital signs, Omnivex Ink provides a platform to manage digital communications across the entire organization.  It allows organizations to: Create a mobile experience in minutes—no coding required Build the app once and deploy it on any device Have real-time bidirectional flow of information Easy control of who has access to your app/information Extend information to everyone’s fingertips Build your app without any coding required  

Higher Ed Experience Expectations Rise With The Digital Era

Millenials are all about being social and communicating; as heavily evidenced by social media. This is difficult in post secondary institutions, which can be geographically enormous – some even requiring a bus to get from one side to the other. In addition to campus size, communication becomes more difficult when students are divided into different ‘colleges’, acting as silos that do not allow for easy interaction. Taking these obstacles into consideration, it is no wonder students often have no idea what is happening at their own college or university. Lucky for them, digital communication platforms provide a solution to this problem. In part one, we discussed how digital communications assist in transportation, emergency notifications, and finding a study spot. Let’s take a look at some more situations where digital transformation can further assist in creating a healthy and engaged school community. Let’s Go Gryphs! When selecting a post secondary institution, young adults are very interested in the experience they will have throughout their time there. Hours upon hours go into researching colleges and universities to find the perfect fit. Publishers such as Business Insider consistently rate schools based on their school spirit, since it such a distinguishing aspect of campus culture. In Canada, Queens university is one of the most sought after universities. It is no coincidence it also happens to be ranked highest in school spirit. Through digital communication platforms, institutions can increase school spirit by hyping up events, amplifying student voices, and engaging students. With such platforms now having the ability to reach any device; video wall, TV screen, cellular phone, etc., this allows for a broader reach. Giving this tool to student bodies such as clubs and associations, allows them to better inform other students of activities being run around campus. For example, when the annual pep rally comes around, each team can show off their creative attempts to hold the most school spirit. Videos can be updated in real-time, play on a loop, or even be live streamed. This would allow the entire campus to remain involved even if they are unable to attend. We Won School pride fuels school spirit, so showcasing achievements is crucial. There is always room for improvement in this area. For example, at the university I attend, the only achievements we hear about are those of the football team, or if the university is in the news. On the education side, there is tons of research being conducted by students and faculty, yet if you walk around campus and ask anyone what awards the university has won recently for research, not one student could answer the question. Sports can also fall in a similar category. Besides football, there is no talk of any other sports unless you visit the athletics website. There you can find that the university is consistently winning awards for multiple sports. Showcasing these achievements increases campus moral, adds to campus culture, and allows school pride to thrive. Who Doesn’t Love The Buzz? Students love a campus that is always buzzing. It makes them feel as though they are part of something bigger; a community. In order to create this buzz, it is the institution that is tasked with creating events, or supporting clubs that will do so. Implementing a digital communications platform that helps increase the buzz is a must for every post-secondary institution. Many of these platforms can integrate with real-time data, making it is easier than ever to produce a large buzz. For example, countless hours go into planning an executing campaigns for the next student body president. When voting day comes around, digital platforms make it easy to showcase real time voting polls as they rise. Candidates must meet quorum in order to qualify, so if not enough buzz is generated this can be very difficult for candidates. By showcasing real-time poles, students are more likely to participate in the voting process, and feel as though they are actively contributing to their community. Let’s Talk Revenue Post secondary institutions are a business, and contain multiple different sources of revenue throughout campus. This can include anything from the coffee shop to bookstore, to cafeteria or gift shop. As it stands, these operations currently showcase their promotions through 8 ½ x 11 paper posters randomly plastered in buildings around campus. This requires time and money on behalf of each individual operation to create the poster, print it off, and walk around taping it to the walls. Not to mention, what if there is an unnoticed error on the poster, or the promotion needs to suddenly be adjusted? This again would require an employee taking time out of their day to adjust each individual poster by hand. A digital communications platform would allow an individual to fix a mistake, or adjust a number, on every single deployment with simply a click of a button. As well, different information and promotions could be shown in different areas, the digital signs could rotate through a number of different ads, or promotions could be set to run at certain times of day. This can be very useful for menu boards as well. Prices need to be adjusted? Click of a button. New menu item? Click of a button. Ran out of an item? Click of a button. A lot simpler than asking the graphic artist to redesign the entire board and getting a new sign printed! Another useful use case for campus operations is simply promoting menu items. At my university, there are certain cafeterias that have different meal items everyday. The chefs not only put time into preparing a weekly menu, but also preparing the lovely dishes. Most students will go home to eat their meals since they become tired of the same old Subway of Pizza Pizza. Don’t be fooled, they can be tempted. If they’re leaving the library and see some mouth watering tacos or roast beef pop up on a screen, you can be sure they’re going to change their plans and stay on campus for lunch. Voila, instant revenue. Same goes for the gift shop, nobody plans to go to the gift shop unless it’s Homecoming or Christmas. That is, unless a flash sale comes along. If a student is using a school computer or mobile phone, and a quick notification pops up that the gift shop is having a 50% off sale today, that student is definitely stopping in on their way home. Attentive post secondary officials are aware of how important ‘the experience’ is to students. Whether choosing a college or university, this is their second largest consideration next to academics. It is important that officials continue to build upon the experience they provide to students, and move forward with new technologies to remain competitive in the digital era.

Smart Students Demand Smart Tech – Higher Ed Institutions need to Step Up

Millennials are embracing the increasingly digital world. Imagine an institution that brings together thousands of these millennials everyday. This place is where they spend the majority of their time for four to eight years, and spend thousands of dollars to do so. What are their expectations for such a place? Digital communication. As a student myself, currently attending a well known Canadian University, I have first hand experience with the digital communication tools available on campuses. Higher education institutions are using basic digital signage to share important information in order to improve the campus experience for students, employees, and visitors. While this is a great start, it is only scratching the surface of what digital communication tools can do for this community. With the majority of students between the ages of 18-25, they have grown up in an era of tech, making it an expectation rather than a bonus. Highlighted below are a few of the many ways university and colleges can implement digital communications across their campuses. Timely Transportation Students are busy; juggling school, extracurricular activities, a job, social life, all while practicing the current trend of healthy active living and fitting in a weekly Netflix binge. They expect information to be where they need it, when they need it. Students are techy; they are aware of the digital tools available to communicate. Therefore, students become quite frustrated when these tools are not available, forcing them to go out of their way to find the information for themselves. For example, on my campus, the majority of students commute to school everyday by bus. Why don’t we have a mobile app with real-time updates on bus routes? Students are frustrated with this everyday; the bus never showed, it was 20 minutes late, it was full when it reached my stop, did you know buses only run every hour on holidays – I was waiting 40 minutes! Mobile apps are everywhere, which is why students find it so frustrating when they don’t have one for a crucial service they use everyday. With the right software, it’s easy to whip up a real-time mobile app in minutes. Simplifying the Study Spot Struggle Exam season or not, students often spend 10-30 minutes walking through the floors of the school library looking for a seat. Seats are definitely available, but students often become so frustrated trying to find a seat they give up and head off to find somewhere else to study. Many students won’t even consider going to the library - they simply don’t want to deal with the headache and struggle of wandering around with a heavy bag of textbooks just to find a spot to study. This reflects poorly on the university, as an available library to study is one of the most basic expectations from a post secondary institution. An easy fix to this could be to implement real-time digital signage and/or a mobile app, showing which seats, cubicles, or group study rooms are available. The current method of booking group study rooms at many schools consists of booking online when the portal opens at midnight. The first problem with this is students need to be up and available at exactly midnight if they even want a chance at getting a room. Secondly, most of these rooms are booked as a precaution if students can’t find a better spot in the library when they arrive, meaning most of the rooms sit booked yet unused. IOT sensors have become highly affordable in recent years, making it a realistic and easy solution to a problem such as this. IOT sensors installed in each study room or cubicle can easily communicate to a digital screen or mobile app whether that space is occupied or available. This is similar to how many new parking garages are notifying people of where and what spots are available. Enabling students with real-time data such as this would significantly improve the student experience. Taking Safety into the 21st Century With thousands of students living on campus, and tens of thousands of students visiting campus each day, safety is a primary concern for higher education institutions. The current method of emergency notification is the well known siren. While an effective method for notifying people of an emergency, it does not allow the recipient to make the most informed decision about what to do. This poses many problems. An individual may be deaf, in which case they will not be aware of the emergency. Or, when making the decision to use the closest exit in a fire, an individual could be heading straight towards the fire, wasting precious time needed to safely escape. Through digital communication tools such as digital signage or mobile apps, large groups of people can be instantly informed of what type of emergency is occurring and how to safely deal with the situation. Not only can it provide information to people at risk, but bi-directional abilities allow information to be relayed back. For example, people can inform emergency personnel which part of the building they are in, if they are safe, trapped, or even received the message. Another example could be aiding in safety communications when students walk alone at night, or if a crime is witnessed. The current safety method consists of a number of safety poles placed around campus. While a great invention, it is no help to students that are in danger nowhere near the pole. If students are targeted, they will obviously not be targeted in sight of an emergency pole. With a bi-directional safety app, students could easily alert authorities with a click of a button, anytime, any place. They can also alert authorities of the type of incident that is occurring, allowing safety personnel to take appropriate action without wasting any time. Safety is a liability to any post secondary institution. Digital communication gives you the ability to reduce risk and increase the safety of students, faculty, and visitors. While higher education institutions are on the right track, they are not meeting the expectations of their high paying customers – students. Universities and Colleges are consistently making campus improvements in order to attract top students, and digital communications should not be forgotten. In a time when consumers are already fully immersed in technology, and institutions are just beginning to embrace digital solutions, being an early adopter is where you want to be positioned. Digital communication tools allow campuses to not only gain competitive advantage, but also differentiate themselves against competing institutions by providing the technology students now expect.
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