growing like crazy

University of Colorado Health

How do we move 5x faster by growing our own best and brightest?

A multi-region Epic enterprise health system, UCHealth combines the region's top academic medical center and leading community hospitals to provide leading-edge care to patients in the Rocky Mountain region. Its growth goals are as ambitious as any we’ve seen. To keep pace with their recognized excellence and ambitious vision for patient care, UCHealth is expanding its presence through M&A, joint venture, Community Connect and organic internal growth.

We’re really good at this, but we need to figure out how to go even faster.

UCHealth’s forward-thinking IT leadership built an experienced and successful Epic project team highly skilled in extending their IT platform. The team had a perfect track record of meeting milestones and exceeding expectations. Challenged to "do more with less,” they wanted to ensure that systems weren’t a rate-limiting factor in UCHealth’s rapid organizational growth. In early 2015, they proactively engaged us as a strategic partner.

Help us do what we do well more efficiently.

The processes and team structure that had worked well up until that point needed to scale. They know Epic, but they needed to do more of what they do best – quickly. They needed a new way to manage projects to oversee concurrent implementation waves, to utilize standard documentation and tools, to provide a consistent end-user experience, and to quickly manage risks and escalations. UCHealth needed us to help them create a dynamic and agile growth program.  

Bluetree worked shoulder-to-shoulder with UCHealth to streamline and shore up two key growth components: people and process. 

We started by listening. We took the time to watch the team in action, noticing what worked well and identifying key opportunity areas. We slowed things down to organize and refine, then co-developed the game plan. We organized the projects into manageable phases with actionable deliverables. On the people side, the project scope included creating and onboarding an entirely new Epic PMO team to manage all types of new Epic implementations. We collaborated with IT and operational teams to create executive-level implementation tools including rollout planning, operational readiness programs, team structure, and governance structure. 

From day one, we focused on their long-term success by providing the right amount of support and mentorship to grow and mentor their own. UCHealth was the face of all internal changes and we led from behind, facilitating team work sessions and mentoring UCHealth team members to take on increasingly complex project work. As the expanding PMO added team members to manage upgrades, specialty projects, and clinical optimization, we put standard processes and documentation in place for smooth and speedy ramp-ups. We worked side-by-side the mentor to get new hires up and running as effective project managers within 3 months.

As we stood up the new UCHealth Epic PMO, the success of the homegrown team was quickly noticed. Now that UCHealth’s team is off to the races, they engage us as a go-to “phone a friend” for the next phases of their growth strategy. They tap us for suggestions and to help facilitate work sessions to continually grow and incorporate lessons learned into processes moving forward. 

We collaborated on both strategy and delivery to build a successful and enduring program for IT to keep pace with UCHealth’s organizational aspirations.

"There’s a sense of understanding that we’re in it together and you’re going to help me think things through. We’ll figure it out together. Bluetree’s culture is one of willingness. They’re analytical, likable and engaging. Most of all, I trust them."

 - Brian Redig - Director - IT PMO, UCHealth

The University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora, CO

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