By Gustav Anderson
Jan. 5, 2022
During the peak of the pandemic in 2020, emergency testing and vaccination service COVIDCheck Colorado was established to help return half a million disconnected and isolated people back to their normal lives. For Carol Carrasquillo, COVIDCheck Colorado’s site optimization director, this proved to be a monumental yet extremely necessary challenge. In charge of continuous improvement measures and training protocols across all testing locations, Carrasquillo understands more than most what it takes to optimize a workforce to provide the best possible level of care.
With communities throughout Colorado suffering amidst the pandemic, COVIDCheck Colorado acted quickly to expand its operations. While this rapid expansion provided more public access to testing and vaccines, it was very difficult for Carrasquillo to control frontline staffing issues like no-shows, emergencies, and most commonly, overtime.
“We weren’t necessarily keeping up with the number of staff on-site as quickly as we could,” says Carrasquillo. “When you’re getting those types of 80-hour weeks, there’s cause for concern because that’s not sustainable.”
She also struggled with ensuring all staff had proper medical training and credentials. “Vaccination sites are very particular about the credentials that someone has to have in order to vaccinate,” says Carrasquillo. “It would put us at a big compliance risk if someone were performing duties that they weren’t actually medically certified to do.”
Perhaps the biggest challenge Carrasquillo faced with operations was adjusting staffing levels across 55 different locations in response to fluctuating demand. “It was hard knowing who was at each site and when they were working,” reflects Carrasquillo. “We were doing everything in Excel spreadsheets.”
Carrasquillo needed a solution that would provide her with increased operational visibility so that she could better control labor costs, ensure proper medical compliance, and adjust staffing levels across all sites. She also wanted to equip her staff with technology that would help them perform their jobs efficiently, effectively, and above all, safely.
Carrasquillo used Workforce.com to optimize operations across all 55 of COVIDCheck Colorado’s sites. The workforce management platform automated tasks such as timekeeping and schedule distribution. It also provided Carrasquillo with more visibility into key operational areas like staffing levels, medical compliance, and labor costs.
“Without Workforce.com, we wouldn’t be able to assess our staff as far as where they are, when they are working, and how many hours they’re working,” says Carrasquillo. “Workforce.com is able to quickly assess where we can reallocate extra resources.”
Powered by Workforce.com, Carrasquillo orchestrated 3,400 frontline workers in the successful administration of 300,000 vaccinations and 800,000 tests. With an overhauled workforce management system, operations across all 55 COVIDCheck Colorado sites were streamlined to ensure the best possible efficiency, safety, and patient outcomes. Here are some of the specific ways Workforce.com helped Carrasquillo achieve this success:
With its live insights into scheduled vs actual wages, overtime, and demand data, Workforce.com provides Carrasquillo with the information she needs to pinpoint and limit overspending wherever present. “I can see how much overtime is being worked on a weekly basis,” says Carrasquillo. “[Workforce.com] gives us visibility and raises red flags where we might have opportunities to address unnecessary overtime.”
Most importantly, these savings have enabled Carrasquillo to carry out the equitable deliverance of care, an important part of COVIDCheck Colorado’s mission. “We can take any of those extra dollars that we have and really go out to the different communities that we wanted to reach.”
Optimizing labor costs has also led to better patient outcomes. “We’re able to provide more resources to our sites and newer sites, to be able to run them right from an operational perspective, and test and vaccinate as many people as we can in the community,” says Carrasquillo.
The results speak for themselves, as COVIDCheck Colorado’s NPS scores have consistently fallen in the nineties since implementing Workforce.com.
Using Workforce.com’s Qualifications feature, Carrasquillo can easily check on employee medical certifications and training requirements. “What it has allowed us to do is be able to quickly assess who is actually qualified from a medical certification perspective to do different roles,” says Carrasquillo.
She can also automatically limit scheduling according to qualifications, meaning shifts assigned to unqualified workers are flagged for managers to see and change.
With a live timeclock feed, Carrasquillo and her site managers can see where and when people are working, making it much easier to track down employees who need to be sent to understaffed sites.
“We’ve been using Workforce.com to capture and really assess our capacity,” Carrasquillo states. “We’ve leveraged it to look at how many appointments we have compared to how many people are scheduled and determine whether we have enough staff.”
With the help of Workforce.com, Carrasquillo successfully optimized operations at all COVIDCheck Colorado sites, helping bring emergency aid to thousands of people in need. At the core of this achievement was her ability to empower and allocate her staff with the right tools.
“Your staff is what is really going to make or break your operations,” reflects Carrasquillo. “Whether you have enough to help serve customers or you have too many and need to reallocate them somewhere else, Workforce.com helps make things more efficient and effective.”
Following COVIDCheck Colorado’s success with Workforce.com, Carrasquillo believes change is imminent for emergency health services regarding how administrative tasks and oversight are carried out. “I think the future of the healthcare space is that we need to leverage and utilize [workforce management] in a way that just makes things more operationally efficient.”
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