At a glance

Organisation

Diabetes Victoria

Industry

PA Product

Function

Operations

Location

Melbourne, VIC

Key Points

  • Diabetes Victoria’s old records management system was expensive to maintain and delivered very little return on investment. Their highly manual, paper-based processes took 2-3 weeks to complete.
  • Professional Advantage delivered a comprehensive yet user-friendly records management solution using SharePoint Online with PowerApps and Flow.
  • Digitised forms and workflows improved turnaround time; email alerts for when a document is due to be reviewed improved compliance; quick access to relevant documents and forms boosted their productivity.

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The Company

Diabetes Victoria is a not-for-profit organisation. Its mission is to support, empower, and campaign for people who live with diabetes. They work closely with the community to help people manage their condition. It runs educational programs and seminars. The head office is in Melbourne,
and the organisation has two other locations around Victoria.

Diabetes Victoria has a staff of 150 people, including diabetes nurse educators, dietitians, and health promotion professionals who deliver diabetes education programs and services to Victorians affected by diabetes. They also have a technical team, including data specialists who support the organisation to use data to make informed business decisions.

Diabetes Victoria relies on government funding for 50-60% of its revenue. It then utilises other commercial and fundraising activities to help cover the quality and quantity of its services, with such activities including a clothing collection business.
The funding from this business goes towards research and sending kids on camps.

Challenges

  • Diabetes Victoria’s 10-year old legacy intranet was only serving a small fraction of what the business needed to progress.
  • The old records management system was expensive to maintain and delivered very little return on investment.
  • Highly manual, paper-based recruitment process, that took 2-3 weeks to complete, often with further delays due to paperwork getting lost in transition.

Diabetes Victoria experienced a number of challenges around its processes and technology. The issues came to light when the organisation conducted an employee engagement survey. The results of the survey kicked off an 18-month project where they sought to identify its business and technology issues, and search for solutions. Namely, it wanted to digitise and consolidate its systems, particularly in the areas of Intranet, records, and process management.

The organisation was using a 10-year-old Intranet system. This outdated technology was not user-friendly or visually appealing. The old portal was achieving 10-15% of what Diabetes Victoriawanted its Intranet to achieve through collaboration. The team wanted to store and update documents conveniently, and to share and collaborate on those documents. It wanted staff to be able to access documents when they were off site.

Likewise, the system that Diabetes Victoria used for records management was not ideal. The system was not user friendly and the cost of their records management process was high, delivering little return-on-investment. The organisation was storing many records off site, which was costly and unsustainable. Reviewing and destroying records in line with legal requirements was also a costly, time-consuming, manual process.

Diabetes Victoria’s process management also needed updating. The people and culture team relied on paper forms for hiring new employees. Once the form had been filled, it needed to pass through multiple layers of approval, moving from one desk to another, and sometimes between office locations. The process would take time and forms could get lost in transit. By the time the form reached its destination with the CEO, the information could be inaccurate and out-of-date.

Diabetes Victoria considered it very important to improve on these processes. Being a not-for-profit, the organisation is unlikely to grow its team, and needed to improve efficiencies through good business decisions. They were looking for a unified solution to tick off all its key requirements.

The Solution

Diabetes Victoria was already using Office 365, and so considered SharePoint Online as a possible solution. They met with a representative from Professional Advantage (PA) who gave a presentation on SharePoint Online, demonstrating the technology’s potential to digitise and automate many processes. The team loved how PA presented SharePoint Online.

The solution appeared visually appealing and user-friendly and would give the organisation a greater level of control over its processes. After the presentation, Diabetes Victoria felt confident that SharePoint Online would meet the organisation’s business needs.

Diabetes Victoria considered its relationship with PA very important to finding a successful solution. PA were able to come into Diabetes Victoria’s offices to get a feel for how the team operated. PA tailored a solution to meet their needs. Several meetings and workshops were held to reach their goals.

PA started by migrating Diabetes Victoria’s Intranet to SharePoint Online. Now, everyone in the organisation has access to the intranet through SharePoint Online’s attractive and easy-to-use platform. Every day, all of the staff members login to get news about the organisation and perform daily tasks. Through SharePoint Online, every staff member has access to the documents they need, including forms, guidelines, and procedures. Staff can get these anytime and anywhere, even while offsite. This has made accessing documents easier and is saving a significant amount of time. The platform also helps make clear which are the most recent versions of documents. Sharing and converting to new formats is easy.

Diabetes Victoria saw the introduction of SharePoint Online as a long-term change. The organisation would have to implement the new technology and processes through a staged approach. It would help its staff adapt to the new system by assigning a “SharePoint Champion” to each business unit.
This person would train and help the rest of the team. Thanks to PA’s help, Diabetes Victoria found the training to be successful. The organisation
saw an excellent uptake of the new technology and processes.

SharePoint Online also solved the challenges around records management. Now, all new employee records go on to SharePoint Online. In order to keep the conversion cost under control, Diabetes Victoria is taking a phased approach to phase out paper records. SharePoint Online classifies records in a convenient way for easy access. Through automation, SharePoint Online now notifies staff members when a record is due to be destroyed according to legal requirements. This has made records management much easier, and has even removed the cost of one part time role.

Similarly, SharePoint Online improves process management through automation and digitation. SharePoint Online removes the need for paper-based forms, allowing staff to fill in digital forms, which can be shared and updated instantly. By the time a form reaches the CEO, they can be sure that all the information contained in it is accurate. Aside from reducing time spent on manual processes and improving the security of information, these changes are having a positive environmental impact.

Results

  • A user-centric, mobile-friendly, 24/7 communications portal with an intuitive interface.
  • Quick access to relevant corporate documents and forms, significantly enhancing staff productivity.
  • Improved compliance through built-in email alerts to remind relevant staff when a document is due to be reviewed.
  • Digitised forms have improved turnaround time from form completion to approval.
  • Professional Advantage delivered a comprehensive yet user-friendly records management solution, with improved functionality, at a quarter of the cost quoted to upgrade their legacy solution.

PA helped Diabetes Victoria migrate from several inefficient systems to a single up-to-date solution in SharePoint Online. If the organisation were to maintain its previous records management system, it would have had to spend $100,000. By contrast, PA delivered a records management solution—with far more capabilities—for a quarter of that cost.

PA also helped Diabetes Victoria reduce the costs of its process management system. Where before its hiring process took an average of three weeks, with SharePoint Online it now takes less than a week.

Through SharePoint Online, Diabetes Victoria has reduced its reliance on paper. Every staff member can access a user-friendly online portal to get the documents they need, when and where they need them. Through SharePoint Online’s attractive, user-friendly portal, the organisation can easily and cost-effectively comply with all the relevant government codes and policies. PA also helped them achieve one of its missions in using technology to provide quality services to the community.

The experts at PA helped solve the main business problems and then went above and beyond Diabetes Victoria’s expectations.

Next step

PA understood Diabetes Victoria’s need for a long-term solution that would create even more efficiencies moving forward. They showed them the opportunities offered by SharePoint Online in the future. Presently, PA is helping Diabetes Victoria automate more of its HR processes.

While Diabetes Victoria digitised many of its processes and documents, the organisation is looking to migrate many more of its working documents from its server onto the cloud. This will be part of a larger change management process, soon to launch.