Case Study: EagleMed
“I have lots of other things I can be doing. Here’s this wonderful product that can help me automate tasks that used to take days or weeks to accomplish.
In fact, I was so impressed with the ease of use and significant amount of time savings, that I recorded a video of the upgrade process and sent it to the vendor of the EMS software as a method for helping them!
Viewfinity saves me time. Sure I have to do some back end work writing a few scripts but then it’s hands-off from there.” says Ryan Kane, Systems Engineer for EagleMed.
EagleMed, LLC is a Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Services (CAMTS) accredited critical care transport service. EagleMed, and its sister companies Air Evac Lifeteam and Med-Trans Corporation, collaborate with leading hospital systems, medical centers and EMS agencies to offer improved access to emergency medical care. With its primary headquarters and vast remote bases to support, EagleMed’s IT department was extremely challenged and time constrained managing an estimated 50 unique applications installed on these remote endpoints.
Providing hands-on support to the remote bases in order to resolve security issues due to malware and viruses, keeping the machines patched to a consistent level (the individual bases determined which updates they would and would not apply) and deploying software was time consuming, a drain on critical resources and difficult to manage. EagleMed also changed its electronic medical records product and needed a fast and efficient way to deploy the software to their remote bases. Due to the sensitivity of patient information, they also needed to move to a locked down environment to ensure HIPAA compliance.
Given the remote bases that were scattered throughout a large geographic area, members of the IT support team were spending an excessive amount of time on the road in order to support the EagleMed base and subsidiary companies. In many cases, they were logging 500 miles per month. They realized their current approach was neither cost effective nor efficient. Something had to change.
EagleMed is the first of the subsidiaries to tackle this IT challenge. Using Viewfinity’s Systems and Privilege Management solution suite, technicians now have control over what software is installed on individual machines according to the end user’s needs. They are able to keep track of licenses and have PC inventory reports that list which software and what versions are running on every PC. This makes it very easy to maintain an acceptable level of consistency across the remote bases with an added bonus of better management of their software license agreements.
In particular, Viewfinity has helped EagleMed with its updated EMS medical records software package. A new version was released requiring a step-by-step process to remove components of the software, install mandatory prerequisites and ultimately install the new version. Using Viewfinity, they developed a script that automatically handled all three steps. The solution behaved just like a person performing a hands-on upgrade but with the added benefit of the end user having the ability to continue to work. The entire process occurred in the background without the end user noticing. It’s important to note that this was all happening on locked down machines. The IT team found that users do not need administrator rights, not even temporarily, because the Viewfinity software took care of the required privilege elevation to perform the upgrades.
“Viewfinity was instrumental in helping us solve our challenges related to managing off-domain machines. Since Viewfinity works in tandem with Active Directory but does not require laptops or desktops to be part of the Active Directory domain or to be directly connected to the corporate network, we are now able to easily and quickly resolve issues on any off-network device.”
“The bigger gain was the ability to lock down our PCs and use Viewfinity Privilege Management to manage administrator rights. By locking down the machines, we prevent the sharing of patient data and we’re also mitigating the security risks introduced through malware,” touts Ryan Kane, Systems Engineer for EagleMed. “This will have a very positive impact with the auditors. From an IT perspective, staff now only have access to do what they’re required to do.”
Using Viewfinity, what would have taken a week took a matter of a few hours. Today, EagleMed is deploying nearly all packages through Viewfinity, including Microsoft office, Adobe and others. IT support has not had to drive to a base to perform a software deployment in over 6 months.
IT response times are so much faster. SLA’s are on target and tickets are not open nearly as long as they used to be. They have seen up to a 75% improved response time in some cases. Requests still come in for software upgrades, but users don’t have to wait to get a copy in the mail or for IT to drive out to a base. In most cases it is same day attention – in fact many calls are resolved within 15-30 minutes. This has saved quite a bit of time.
The ability to access any users desktop via the Remote Desktop feature has been very helpful, particularly for supporting such a vast mobile workforce. Using Viewfinity Asset Management, EagleMed inventories its software and hardware and performs capacity planning. From these reports, it is easy to identify which machines are Windows 7 ready and those that are not and plan accordingly. Deploying software to remote machines has been the biggest win. The IT staff is able to deploy silently without interrupting its users workday.
“The users are happier. Viewfinity has enabled us to improve our customer service levels with faster response times and rapid problem resolution. Lockdown forces them to adhere to company policies, where before it was more of an honor system. In fact, most users aren’t aware that they do not have administrator rights. When it surfaces, we help them understand our compliance policies and why they’re in place. Viewfinity Privilege Management helps keep our machines clean of malware, thus the PC performs better helping user’s get their jobs accomplished. They don’t have to deal with the hassle of poor performance.”
The end result: more productive end users, compliance adherence, and time savings for the IT support team. The project has been so successful, that they are currently rolling Viewfinity out for the other two sister companies.