Transforming Senior Living with an Integrated Resident Experience Platform
Many C-level executives are turning their attention to digital transformation as the pandemic has only accelerated the need for integrated technology that can evolve with the business as it goes through monumental disruption.
Holiday Retirement, the largest provider of independent living in the US, has set itself apart as a thought leader and industry trailblazer in this area, making investments into resident experience technology that will deliver new and important value to their residents, staff, and overall business. They have chosen Cubigo for this collaboration in their digital transformation.
Shawn Richard, Vice President of Resident Experience at Holiday Retirement, and Geert Houben, CEO of Cubigo, shared in a recent webinar their thoughts on the challenges and opportunities involved in bringing a legacy organization into the digital era.
Providing a unique experience for each individual by moving to the digital era, is a focus area for Holiday. A lot of resident information is still known only personally by team members, making it a challenge to have a complete understanding of what residents like and don’t like. Also, having information only on paper can be cumbersome when it comes to insightful decision-making where having all data in one place is required. That is where an integrated platform comes into play.
Holiday Retirement took advantage of the disruptive COVID-19 pandemic to put new innovation into place: an integrated resident experience platform. Today, siloed approaches are still used more often than not. The disadvantage of having siloed software packages for different services is that they cannot ‘talk to each other’ which leads to disintegrated and inaccurate sources of truth. Cubigo on the other side is a platform, a horizontal layer that provides all non-clinical services to different stakeholders (staff, residents, family, corporate). Senior living operators don’t need to manage all user interfaces, passwords, or different dashboards. Everything is in one place, in one platform.
As a consequence, this leads to better decisions at all levels. By having a platform, a 360-degree view of each resident can be analyzed. As mentioned by Shawn, this is also in line with the strategy of Holiday to move from a supply to a demand-driven model. Holiday Retirement wants to collect the data of each resident to understand what they like, which activities they participate in, how many requests (e.g. dining, transportation, etc.) they make, all to be able to provide them a more customer-focused experience. Having all information about residents in one place can be compared by Shawn with the ‘Human Resources’ platform for residents. The future roadmap will make use of algorithms that show activities that residents are interested in and activities that are in line with residents’ capabilities. An example: if a resident is in a wheelchair, they don’t want to see a running class. The future of a platform will all be about personalization, not only within the Activities service but within all services.
At the level of services, better decisions can be made when the management team has the opportunity to take all relevant data into account like the number of requests that are made within the community or the processing time of these requests (e.g. how long it takes between ordering food and delivery). The purpose is to optimize processes and in the end, optimize residents’ satisfaction.
At a community and corporate level, best practices among communities can be shared, and benchmarking with peers can be done. Shawn also mentioned that with a platform like Cubigo, he can easily see if resources need to be reallocated between communities.
In addition, Shawn mentioned the importance of having strong integrations between current systems and the platform while having only the platform as a user (resident) interface: 'Holiday Retirement has large legacy systems for the back-end users. A platform like Cubigo that has the agility to plug in into our legacy systems and where the data flows through to the right people while keeping the experience native to the residents (just having one experience) is very critical. It helped us by not needing to rely off the other systems but have them integrated through Cubigo. That is very important to us.'
A question that popped up during the webinar was if the platform will be used by staff and residents only or if it is the intention to onboard other stakeholders. Geert’s answer was clear that one needs to think further than staff and residents. Family, for example, plays an important role in the community as well. They want to be involved in what is happening with their loved ones.
In addition, the group of prospects should not be forgotten. Occupancy rates have been hit very hard during the Covid pandemic. It is crucial to think about changing the sales pipeline and take people still living at home as part of the community. An example can be to invite these people to activities organized in the community so that when the move-in date approaches, the community already feels familiar with them. This is an example of an angle that Holiday Retirement is taking as part of their future roadmap together with Cubigo.
For Holiday, the business case for investment in an integrated platform is obvious. When they started looking at the data which they have, they saw a spike in move-outs in the first six months. Hence, they identified their first objective to capture data on these residents early on to reduce some move-outs. Another objective was to have a number of resident referrals per year based on the resident satisfaction level of the community meeting the resident’s expectations (making the change from a supply to a demand-driven model as mentioned above). With the dashboards generated by their platform, they see at a glance the move-outs at any point and the ROI they are looking for.
Last but not least, it is important to make this digital transformation with all stakeholders on board. The process of Holiday Retirement was to start first with some communities that have ambassadors who are interested in technology. These communities also had residents who were less enthused about technology or even against it. With these communities, a customized training plan and change management process was implemented together with Cubigo. Shawn concluded that ‘it is not as difficult as people think it is.’
You can access the recap or the webinar through the following links: