“This is Not About IT Anymore…” Applying Service Oriented Delivery Across Lines of Business at NHS Blood & Transplant

By ServiceNow - 2014-04-01


“This is not about IT anymore…No, it is about how to apply IT to transform and better enable the business. This is a scary journey to embark on as an IT organization.”  These thoughts from Mike Potter, Business Transformation Director at the NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) in the UK were ones he made as part of a presentation at a recent analyst firm conference in Barcelona. “With ServiceNow, I feel I can live up to my title of Business Transformation Director. To get started, we picked a high-impact project, case management in an HR context...”


So what are the key ingredients that enabled NHSBT to automate and consolidate service delivery first in IT and then successfully deliver into HR, another key organization with impact across the business?


NHSBT has a core purpose to save and improve the lives though a provision of a safe and reliable supply of blood components, diagnostic services and stem cell services to hospitals across England and North Wales. From an IT perspective, NHSBT manages approximately 6,000 staff, based at a variety of sites throughout the UK and within a wide variety of healthcare roles.  The NHSBT IT team works closely with Partners in IT (PiIT) to support their organization and to manage the implementation of ServiceNow.


Key Ingredient: Look for the Commonalities while Scoping Projects; Collaborate Across Functions and Departments

It so happened that while the IT organization was reviewing technologies to consolidate to a single IT service suite ultimately selecting ServiceNow, the HR organization was also working on a major project to restructure and modernize their organization. The primary goal of this HR project was to support the development of a single source of contact, which is called “HR Direct” for all managers and staff to access HR advice and support. The team also needed to automate and improve systems for managing queries and HR cases.


Identifying the commonalities within the IT and HR projects by the business was paramount. “If you strip away the content, the functionality needed to support IT and HR is very similar: essentially you are handling an incoming query or request for help, providing advice or resolution, following up and then documenting what is being done,” said Shane White, HR Business Partner – Organ Donation & Transplantation and HR Strategy Development (business/project lead for HR) with NHSBT.


Key Ingredient: Three Factors for Success – Process, People & Technology

White comments on the work in mapping the processes, along with PiIT, into HR as incredibly valuable: “Although HR processes aren’t always completely linear…we were able to map them much more than we’d done previously and that helped us to identify where we could improve our process.”


Second, the HR Direct team was recruited externally and all had the experience of working with similar concepts in previous organizations. They were able to bring this experience into the planning and delivery of the project.


Third, the ServiceNow technology platform is highly functional, user-friendly and entirely tailored to fit NHSBT’s needs, according to White.


Key Ingredient: Strong Partnership & Aggressive Timelines Thru Implementation and Customer Launch

The combined experience and knowledge of the internal teams at NHSBT and their integration partner, PiIT, plus the flexibility of ServiceNow allowed this major project to go-live within six weeks of commencing the on-site work.


The same underlying capabilities to ease the management of IT applied equally to HR, enabling NHSBT to meet multiple sets of needs with the same system. “The ability to customize ServiceNow to meet our HR needs was impressive and fast, and this helped to build a very good working relationship which was very positive, interactive and responsive,” continued White.


After the six-week implementation, HR Direct took went live. The launch was supported by a robust communications plan over a 30-day window to ensure staff and managers were fully aware of the new service. The new HR platform switched on at 9am, and by 9:10am most of the HR department had accessed it and were using the system to capture their cases.


“The feedback has been tremendous,” concluded White. “The system is very user friendly which has encouraged people to use it more than we predicted.” The team has hit or exceeded all of its targets relating to usage, closure rates and satisfaction within the first two weeks of operation and has maintained these consistently since.



Please CLICK HERE to gain additional detail on the NHSBT case study.

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