Swedish Health Professionals lift digital workplace into the cloud with Omnia
In a drive to modernize the organization’s digital workplace, the Swedish Association of Health Professionals launched a new Omnia-based intranet in early 2020. In conjunction with new collaboration tools like Teams and Microsoft 365, together with a new Document Management System, this platform has enabled the Association to strengthen both its internal communications and its case and document management processes.
– The new platform will help us improve our efficiency as well as streamline and consolidate our communications and internal collaboration using a unified, cloud-based, and easily navigated interface. The transition to Microsoft 365 and Teams has made our work processes considerably easier and more efficient, while Omnia knits together communications, work processes, tools, and documents in a seamless, secure, and readily accessible manner, says Karolina Collins, Digital Process Developer at The Swedish Association of Health Professionals.
More efficient and secure digital workplace
The Swedish Association of Health Professionals (Vårdförbundet in Swedish) is the trade union and professional organization of nurses, midwives, biomedical scientists, and radiographers, together with students in these professions. With more than 114,000 members, its mission is to improve terms and conditions for its members as well as opportunities for development in the respective professions.
In 2018 the Association embarked on a comprehensive improvement project focussed on strengthening its digital workplace with better and more secure systems for internal communications and document management. The custom-built systems in use were out-of-date and could no longer provide adequate and efficient support to the organization. The Association also needed to build a new Case Management System and furnish the organization with modern and more powerful tools. It was also looking for a communications platform that was easier to manage and keep updated compared with its previous solution. As a first step in the improvement work, the Association phased out its heterogeneous flora of work tools and migrated to Microsoft 365 to standardize and streamline its system environment.
The migration to Microsoft 365 was implemented in December 2018. At that juncture, the Association also began its search for a suitable intranet and document management platform. It wanted a secure and adaptable standard platform that could easily be integrated with Microsoft 365 and new functionality.
– Omnia was our best choice since we saw it as being not only robust and secure but also more flexible and adaptable compared with its competitors. It was also clear to us that Precio Fishbone was unequivocally dedicated to the task of continually adding the functionality lacking in the Microsoft Office environment. This is very important to us. We also listened to colleagues in our sector, who vouched for the quality of the platform as well as for Precio Fishbone’s professional competence, Karolina explains.
Unified collaboration platform boosts efficiency
The Omnia-based intranet was unveiled in February 2020. Shortly thereafter, Teams was introduced as the organization’s new collaboration, chat, and meetings application. As it turned out, the launch of the new digital workplace couldn’t have been better timed.
– Our new digital communications and collaboration platform made it easy for us to incorporate remote work throughout the organization at the very start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Setting up a home office on the new platform went really smoothly for the majority of our employees, Karolina explains.
What was perhaps the biggest change for users of the digital workplace is that all collaborations now take place in Teams, which is integrated with Omnia, instead of in the collaboration rooms in the previous intranet. Employees now use Omnia’s Teams templates to initiate, set up, and manage projects and collaborations of any kind. Another major improvement is that every tool, collaboration, project, item of information, and internal communication is integrated with Omnia.
– In Omnia, we have all tools, documents, communications, and collaboration channels integrated and accessible via a unified platform and interface. This has made it easier for users to find relevant tools and information and to start, engage in, and navigate to collaborations. It’s now also much more convenient for management and editors to distribute information to and connect with the entire organization. Previously, no more than ten editors published content on the intranet. Today, we have more than 50 active editors and more are coming aboard in a steady flow, Karolina underlines.
Sensitive information in safe hands
The Swedish Association of Health Professionals has approximately 180 employees and 5,000 elected representatives. Setting up user access control has been one of the greatest challenges of the project.
– Setting up the authorization solution for our employees has been relatively easy. Every employee must have access to more or less every system and web service. But it’s more complicated configuring user access control for our elected representatives. This is due to Microsoft’s license programs, which can be very costly for us. We are therefore investigating different license programs in order to keep costs down at a reasonable level, says Karolina, and adds:
– With Omnia, however, it’s very easy to protect sensitive information and to configure different user access roles. A possible solution for our elected representatives is to build a customized extranet. It won’t be more costly for us to expand the solution with an extranet, which was yet another reason for our choice of Omnia.
The next phase of the Association’s improvement project is to implement a new Document and Case Management System.
– It will lead to more rule-based and secure creation, collaboration, management and storage of documents and cases, Karolina predicts.