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St John Ambulance New Zealand

The Challenge

When your community depends on you, for life and death, digital efficiency matters more than ever.  

St John New Zealand is an independent charity organisation that provides healthcare services for communities all across New Zealand. Responding to over 500,000 emergency calls each year, St John is at the frontline of medical response and the leading provider of first aid training in New Zealand. The organisation provides health and social care, as well as community programmes for all ages.  

St John already had a massive positive impact on its many communities, but with the right kind of digital transformation, the organisation knew it could do much more. St John wanted to improve efficiencies and accessibilities across all their activities. It was especially committed to connecting its many stakeholders - the customers, donors, patients and colleagues - in new ways while remaining sensitive to their needs, especially when it came to seniors and their technological literacy.

 

“What we’re actually doing is fundamentally changing how we do business.” 

- Adi Wickramaratne, National Manager, St John New Zealand

 

Adding another layer of challenge to the mix, years of limited resources and digital skills had resulted in outdated technology, complex legacy systems and a reliance on manual processing.

The challenge was to fast-track transformation by executing on a vision that would leave no one behind while maintaining critical business continuity.

That’s where LEVO came in. 

 

The Solution

LEVO got to work: analysing choke points and understanding innovation killers to capture and address the issues that held back digital transformation in the past. The team began building methods that would get the transformation wheels turning.  

 

“The team at LEVO were able to help guide our vision, and not just in terms of UI but also what capabilities we would need to be able to deliver the program.”

- Adi Wickramaratne, National Manager, St John New Zealand

 

Using this detailed overview, an organisational structure and digital platform could be developed that held the community needs front and centre. With LEVO leading the re-engineering of internal processes and managing stakeholder expectations, the large-scale digitisation of the organisation became achievable. 

The first step was to assess how various customers - of diverse needs - navigated their relationship with St John, whether that was via phone, email, online or in person. Understanding how each demographic accessed St John’s services was vital in understanding how best to accommodate them in the digital transformation. 

Next was observing what staff actually needed to enable them to do their jobs best. By acting as a fly on the wall, as well as conducting information-gathering sessions that promoted transparency and trust, LEVO could layout what was needed internally to make the entire transition work.

Far too often, digital transformations are derailed because a lack of people unity leads to ineffective technological implementation. By bringing the internal and external experiences together, LEVO structured the path to success - one that everyone in the organisation was on board for.

 

The Outcome

By bringing the diverse arms of the business together, LEVO created a single portal for first aid training, medical alarm programs, ambulance services and donations. This easy-to-use platform enabled a broad range of community members to obtain quick access to everything they needed to enable St John to do its best work. 

Behind the scenes was a new level of operational efficiency, driving the long-term success of this digital transformation. The St John’s vision had been achieved through an in-depth approach to stakeholder engagement, innovation of the organisational structure, and a focus on upskilling and empowerment of staff. 

 

“Having a partner who understands how we work and how our people work, but also understands the not-for-profit sector, is incredibly valuable and without their support, we wouldn't be where we are today.”

- Adi Wickramaratne, National Manager, St John New Zealand

 

With the new, self-service portal, the organisation now deals with less calls and emails relating to standard information, enabling staff to spend more time on emergency situations. Documentation which, previously, could take up to 4 weeks to receive was now instantaneous thanks to this same portal (LEVO was a key Episerver partner in the project and to read Episerver’s case study).

Innovative reimagining of the way staff worked at St John has led to various time and resource savings. Updates to coursework management now saves 26 hours of admin time per month (over 3 days), and digitising of credit notes saves $22,500 in printing and posting costs per year. These were just two of a whole suite of advances made with organisational change management and appropriate application of digital technologies. 

By strategically focusing on the end user throughout the digital transformation, LEVO was able to increase St John’s engagement and revenue. St John was able to grow their marketing operations in an accessible way for all customers. As they continue to grow, more digital experiences will be implemented. Key digital experiences include AI-driven recommendations, automation, personalisation, and many other supportive capabilities. 

According to Adi, “The team at Levo were able to help guide our vision, and not just in terms of UI but also what capabilities we would need to be able to deliver the program. They've been absolutely key in delivering our first-aid training business onto this new platform. But they’ve also helped us avoid potential pitfalls around what we're trying to deliver in the future.”

Adi continued:

“We're about two years into our digital journey and we've got a long way to go. We're going to be delivering a huge amount of transformation within the organisation. Having a partner who understands how we work and how our people work, but also understands the not-for-profit sector, is incredibly valuable and without their support, we wouldn't be where we are today.”