BACKGROUND: OSF St. Francis Medical Center is one of the largest Catholic hospitals in the United States with more than 4,000 employees and more than 600 physicians. It is the flagship hospital of OSF Healthcare System, a comprehensive, integrated network of 10 healthcare facilities, seven affiliates and more than 225 primary care physicians, providing healthcare to more than 1.5 million people in Illinois, Michigan and Iowa.

PLATFORMS: DSS WorkBench operates on PCs with 486/Pentium, Windows 95 or above, and requires 16MB of RAM, 20MB hard drive space and 100MB available on the file server. DSS WorkBench attaches to any Access or Oracle database.

PROBLEM SOLVED: OSF St. Francis wanted to move into the area of relationship marketing. We have a wealth of customer information stored in many different and non-relational databases. OSF recognized the need for a data warehouse that could take the multiple data sources, standardize, household and store the large amount of patient information required to make important marketing decisions and track the results of their marketing efforts. We also realized that once the data warehouse was built we would need a way to access the information from the desktop and generate standard tracking reports.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Initially, we used DSS WorkBench to extract targeted mail lists for our predefined marketing programs. It was a real benefit to finally be able to track the results of our direct mail communications and show a return on investment almost immediately. Now, we also use the tool regularly to analyze our market by geographic, demographic and utilization criteria. As we move forward, we plan to do more market planning based on what we can learn from the information we already have, fine-tuning selection criteria and implementing more automatic programs that are triggered by monthly patient service.

STRENGTHS: I am not a programmer, but can use this ROLAP tool to access our information warehouse. The user interface is a drag-and-drop technology that makes SQL queries quick and easy. When I don't have time to do the query myself, I can call my customer-focused team at CPM to do the query for me. I can then access and reuse the query anytime I want. DSS WorkBench provides password protected and encrypted access to the data warehouse through the Internet, so I can use the tool anywhere I can connect to the Internet. DSS WorkBench also has some wonderful presentation capabilities ­ tables, crosstabs, graphs and maps that export to Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and other presentation programs.

WEAKNESSES: One shortcoming of DSS WorkBench would be the ability to generate complex sub-queries. This will be impoved in release 1.6 due out in July 1999

SELECTION CRITERIA: CPM provides more than just a piece of software as a marketing solution. They have more than 12 years of experience developing and using data warehouses in the financial and healthcare industries. They also have a vertically integrated set of services beginning with technology and extending through creative and direct mail marketing services, so they can support our efforts every step of the way.

DELIVERABLES: There are around 40 standard reports in the healthcare toolbox that can be filtered for even finer detail. These reports can be printed directly from DSS WorkBench or exported to Microsoft Office for reformatting. Healthcare list generator can pull mailing lists at either individual or household level and automatically dedupe and purge "do not solicits."

VENDOR SUPPORT: CPM provided several training sessions and trained our IS staff to install the software. CPM continues to support us by supplementing our own marketing staff and identifying new ways in which we can benefit from our investment.

DOCUMENTATION: The documentation is both thorough and easy to follow. Manuals are provided both in print and on-line.

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