IBM > Case Studies > Apria Healthcare: Leveraging Accurate Forecasts for Competitive Healthcare Services

Apria Healthcare: Leveraging Accurate Forecasts for Competitive Healthcare Services

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Technology Category
  • Analytics & Modeling - Big Data Analytics
  • Analytics & Modeling - Predictive Analytics
Applicable Industries
  • Healthcare & Hospitals
  • Retail
Applicable Functions
  • Human Resources
  • Quality Assurance
Use Cases
  • Demand Planning & Forecasting
  • Inventory Management
Services
  • Cloud Planning, Design & Implementation Services
  • Testing & Certification
The Challenge
Apria Healthcare, a leading provider of home respiratory services and medical equipment in the United States, was looking to expand its high-quality care services into new markets. However, the company faced challenges in identifying cost centers due to its manual forecasting system. The company's spreadsheet-driven forecasting system made it difficult to understand the true cost of operations, which was crucial for a healthcare organization of their size. The company gathered a lot of data about the market for their specialist products, but the inconsistent and inaccurate data capturing and usage made it difficult to focus on the most promising opportunities. The company needed a solution that would help them understand their true operational costs, increase efficiencies, control costs, and build more competitive pricing models for their services.
About The Customer
Apria Healthcare is one of the leading providers of home respiratory services and related medical equipment in the United States. The company's services are used in areas such as oxygen therapy, inhalation therapies, sleep apnea treatment, and negative pressure wound therapy. Headquartered in Lake Forest, California, Apria owns and operates more than 400 locations throughout the United States and serves more than 1.2 million patients each year. The company aims to offer patients the highest-quality services at the best possible price and is constantly looking to grow the business and reach new customers.
The Solution
Apria Healthcare partnered with Aviana to replace its spreadsheet-driven forecasting system with a centralized, best-practice approach. The company decided to build a centralized approach to forecasting and selected IBM® Cognos® TM1® on Cloud as their enterprise-class solution. Working together with a team from IBM Premier Business Partner Aviana, Apria Healthcare built a secure budgeting and forecasting environment for its distribution business. By deploying the solution in the cloud, the finance team gained the flexibility to scale its analytics environment to meet immediate business needs, while reducing its dependence on internal IT support. The solution allowed the company to sidestep many of the traditional on-premises hardware issues and focus on developing a solution that would give their users exactly what they need.
Operational Impact
  • The implementation of IBM® Cognos® TM1® on Cloud has transformed Apria Healthcare's operations. The company is now able to deliver accurate budgets, forecasts, and reports to a broad audience of stakeholders quickly and effectively. The solution has eliminated virtually all of the data quality and trust issues that were raised by the old spreadsheet-based processes. The company now uses a single, centralized analytics engine to process their financial data in a repeatable and consistent way. This has helped the company to gain a clearer picture of the true state of their operations. The solution has also enabled the company to understand all of the cost drivers for each of their products, which has allowed them to create centralized pricing models across the entire business. This has potentially enabled the company to better use their economies of scale to deliver the same high-quality care services at a significantly lower price.
Quantitative Benefit
  • Eliminated virtually all of the data quality and trust issues that were raised by the old spreadsheet-based processes
  • Gained a clearer picture of the true state of operations
  • Enabled accurate budgets, forecasts, and reports to a broad audience of stakeholders quickly and effectively

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