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Wala Lang

In: Business and Management

Submitted By fernanpingol
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Holy Angel University
College of Business and Accountancy

CASE STUDY
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES IN THE USA

SUBMITTED BY:
Group 4
Dizon, Corilyn
Liwanag, Patrick Ian
Pingol, Michael Fernan
Reyes, Lawrence Paolo
Santos, Lianne
Valdevieso, Mark

S-304
YMARKMA

SUBMITTED TO:
Mrs. Ma. Cristina G. Naguit

I – SUMMARY OF CASE Information Technology advancements in data storage and retrieval and distributed networks have helped US Health and Human Services (HHS) to apply customer-focused approach for their consumer relationship. Consumers in HHS are categorized into two; consumer and paying customer. In this, quality of service is measured in terms of value, say number of consumers treated or cured, by the paying customer, and in terms of confidence, convenience, availability and comfort, in addition to technical competence, by the consumer. IT investments in the US HHS systems were due to increasing costs to the paying customers, which consisted 16% of the GDP. IT application appears to be the central to attaining good value and tracking consumers to avoid fraud and deliver information on outcomes. In the 1980’s, attempts to transfer IT systems across functional boundaries failed and gained little success due to problem to technology. But now, IT systems got better especially in HHS systems’ service quality by increasing customer focus and breaking between functional silos. With regards to care in the IT system, it has been inconsistent with poor co-ordination between providers. Confusion, redundancy and frustration results from this when people seek the urgent help they need, and is worsen by state and national funding complexities. But this is currently being provided a solution by Microsoft through customer-focused management, which they termed “service-oriented architecture”. Microsoft claims that it is getting easier to undo the morass of disconnected silos and realize the vision of connected human services, thus increasing value to all customers. They focus on three critical changes; from a functional perspective to a process orientation, from a build-to-last model to a build-to-change model, and from application (functional) silos to loosely coupled, orchestrated solutions. This vision has four major components; the portal architecture or the entrance to the system, the core business solutions or the business applications which share the common data, the integration and business intelligence store or the hub of the systems, and the business and technology management or the application tools required to manage the HHS administrative functions. Among other examples were this is being applied, common to them is the building of a central-shared database for a range of HHS providers and the use of the web to increase the availability of this data to caseworkers in the field.

II – STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM What can Microsoft’s ‘service-oriented architecture’ provide and contribute to HHS systems regarding their problem in satisfying the customers with their service, which are considered inconsistent with poor co-ordination between providers and how can it contribute to HHS systems’ service quality? OR What can US HHS system do to improve their quality of service and provide consistency on their systems, for them to be considered as a system using a customer-focused approach?

III – ANALYSIS OF THE PROBLEM It is stated in the case that US HHS’ main problem was the quality of their service. Because they rely on multiple disciplinary agencies with their own IT systems, care has become inconsistent with poor co-ordination between providers which resulted to unsatisfied consumers and paying customers. It is also stated in the case that Microsoft offered their newly developed ‘service-oriented architecture’ as a solution to this problem, but did not state if how this system can exactly contribute to US HHS. If US HHS were to apply this architectural vision by Microsoft, what exactly will they resolve? With regards to our knowledge about customer-focused management, accuracy, accessibility and capacity are what matters most when it comes to physical assets of these types of management, especially in their IT systems. In the case, it is clear that the current IT systems of US HHS are lacking these qualities.

IV – ALTERNATIVE COURSES OF ACTION To resolve this main problem of US HHS, these are the alternative courses of action that can be used to resolve their problem on quality of their service in their systems:

1. The first ACA that US HHS systems can do is to apply what Microsoft offers them. An advantage to this is that there will be a high possibility that it can resolve their problem. If the components of this vision will be carefully studied, it is clear that it is a customer-focused type of system. From the entrance of the system, up to its management part, all are focused on increasing customer value and satisfaction. If we were to remember what customer-focused management is, it is always the customer value that is important. By providing services that will meet or even exceed the expectations of the consumers or the paying customers, then they can satisfy them. With Microsoft’s system, different HHS agencies will then be interconnected to provide more consistent information. That is what HHS system needs in order to improve their quality of service and satisfy consumers. But then again, there is always a disadvantage. Because it’s just a claim and an offer, there is not much evidence of its effectiveness yet. There are four US examples where systems similar to Microsoft’s vision are being applied, but none of them are exactly applying Microsoft’s architectural vision. It was just a claim of comparison by Microsoft that they are common on their initiatives. It will also be costly, because the whole systems of US HHS will be the ones that will be renewed or redeveloped in order for it to improve. 2. Another ACA is for HHS to not accept Microsoft’s offer. Because it isn’t proven and tested yet, US HHS isn’t sure if it will truly help them in their problem. With this, they will just continue on with their current IT systems. They can just provide some improvements on their systems by their own, and because they are on the field of health and human services, they should be the ones who know better on how to satisfy and serve their consumers or paying customers. Also, it can help them save funds because accepting Microsoft’s offer will surely cost them a lot considering Microsoft is a reputable company in the field of IT and renewing their systems will need lots of funding. An advantage to this is that, considering the current state of US HHS, the inconsistency and poor co-ordination between providers of the systems will continue. Also, more customers will be unsatisfied of their service if no major action is done.

V – RECOMMENDATION For US HHS system to improve their quality of service as a whole, we would recommend that they apply the ‘service-oriented architecture’- vision of Microsoft. From the information they’ve provided on their advocate, it clearly shows a system that will focus on the convenience and benefit of their customers. Nowadays, almost every organization is evolving standardized packaged software to interconnect them with others, just like the states in US. Microsoft’s aim is undo the idea of silos, or systems that operates in isolation from others, and interconnect human services. Their offer to work with service providers aims to increase the value of customers, which is the main focus of customer-focused management. As stated before, in order to provide customer value, the perceived benefits must always be greater than the perceived costs, which means that the benefits that the customers will gain from using the service they provide is worth their time, effort, and other monetary or non-monetary costs. If this perceived customer value is achieved, it will lead to customers that are satisfied with the service that they will provide in the future. Also, the changes that the web-based system that Microsoft wants to offer are all reasonable. From a functional perspective to a process orientation, it means that their system will focus on the processes for the convenience of the customers rather than just performing their function. From a build-to-last model to a build-to-change model, means that they’re not building the system just for it to last long, but to change the system that is providing unsatisfying service. And from application (functional) silos to loosely coupled, orchestrated solutions, which was their goal, by undoing the idea of systems that operates in isolation from others to avoid inconsistency on the information and service that the HHS provides. Even though it’s just an offer and no proof of implementation, being the first one to have this system provided by Microsoft is worth the risk, knowing the reputation of Microsoft in the field of IT, globally.

VI – LEARNINGS

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