Learn how DataDx enhanced their SaaS data platform to take ownership of data, improve user experience, and pass time and cost savings onto their clients.
Glen Lawrence, Chief Business Officer at DataDx, is proud to provide an advanced analytics and business intelligence platform to independent health care clinicians and leadership. The company’s mission was clear from the start—extend business analytics and data intelligence commonly used by multi-billion-dollar hospitals to your local family doctor or dentist.
“Physicians are scientists at heart. They crave data and facts to support decision-making,” said Glen. “We wanted to help local and regional practices so they have a leg to stand on when negotiating with large insurance systems and navigating shifting trends in the healthcare space. But the DataDx platform needed a refresh.”
As Chief Business Officer, Glen oversees all aspects of business operations and corporate development activities. After a rigorous RFP process, DataDx tied the knot with CSG as their exclusive software development partner. The task? Put DataDx on the operating table. The SaaS solution was a successful proof of concept and product, but it needed to be optimized for scale.
Working closely with DataDx, CSG delivered a full-fledged, end-to-end SaaS platform so this rapidly growing startup can serve community clinics better than ever. Keep reading to see how CSG retooled the Software-as-a-Service that helped Glen take ownership of customer data, improve user experience, and pass time and cost savings onto clients.
n the late 2000s, between the HITECH Act of 2009 and the Affordable Care Act of 2010, there was a new mandate for patient health records to go electronic.
While converting practices into a record-based patient delivery model improved security and facilitated in easier retrieval of health records, it created heaps of data—way more data than the typical practice could manage. Data now comes from all directions and a variety of business applications, making high-quality analytics and reporting a must-have.
Before DataDx entered the scene, doctors were running on gut instinct instead of data analysis. DataDx Founder, Kate Othus, and the team identified a gap in the market for practice analytics that also delivered a delightful user experience.
As Glen’s background is rooted in large hospitals and health systems who have the resources to leverage data for insights, he knew the family doc was at a disadvantage. Glen said, “While these large hospitals have robust IT and finance staff to help make sense of the chaos, independent physicians and dentists rarely do. We wanted to change that.”
“While we have technical staff on our team, CSG made it easy for our leadership team to understand the downstream effects and performance impacts of decisions made in the near term.”
DataDx consolidates data that floods in from the hundreds of vendors serving independent practices. Solutions vary, so it’s a hodgepodge of financial data mixed with patient demographics and production measures to claims processing. The cost structure varies too. Some offer free electronic health records with mixed reporting capabilities in exchange for a percentage of patient bills.
Independent medical professionals needed a single solution that could integrate disparate data sources. DataDx wanted to be that solution, but the team hit some snags.
“We wanted to deliver one system, but we found ourselves having to incorporate additional solutions to accommodate our clients, which resulted in a new custom build for each individual client,” said Glen.
Before engaging CSG, Glen and his team were working on all cylinders to account for each client’s specific data feeds, table structures, unique fields for recording values, among many other variables.
DataDx had the heart, but Glen needed efficiency so new clients could onboard faster. This required building data integration pipelines to each client’s financial data and electronic health record systems, among many other things.
“As a startup, we nailed the proof of concept but we needed to scale,” said Glen. “CSG was instrumental in helping us create standardized processes so every time we brought in a new client we weren’t starting from scratch, creating a one-off process that wasn’t repeatable.
The project was monumental, taking the CSG and DataDx teams working together through the latter half of 2019 into April 2020.
“It was a lot of work but it was a huge win for us. This wouldn’t have happened if not for the experience and cohesiveness of the CSG team,” Glen said. “Each individual brings their own subject matter expertise and they’re really the best and brightest at what they do.
This was the perfect embodiment of our motto ‘Game On,’ which represents bringing out the best in teams through smart plays and an indomitable will to win.”
CSG helped Glen structure the DataDx SaaS data platform in a way that was adaptable. Everything was revised and optimized—from the data agent installed on client servers to the API connections that are built to connect to different source systems—bringing all the raw data into a data lake.
With Glen’s input, CSG built the architecture under the guiding principle that the platform must be solid enough to handle the backlog of clients waiting to onboard. But the architecture also needed to give the DataDx team room to take over maintenance and provide ongoing enhancements in response to the intricacies between each physician’s practice.
By developing a straightforward data processing engine, CSG pushed the semantic layer fully into Power BI as a more democratized way for Glen and his team to maintain data models and complex calculations.
There is nothing easy about Power BI’s calculation engine, DAX. Measures were written in a clear and comprehensible way that simplified ease of understanding and allowed the DataDx team to further develop.
CSG also incorporated the ETL process of transforming raw data into a usable shape. CSG brought everything in line so that all of the client’s data was in the same format as in the SaaS data warehouse, populating reports to be visualized within the DataDx software.
Leveraging complementary skillsets, CSG jointly built this collaborative environment with Glen’s team. “Even though you have folks that are on the same team, sometimes you don’t feel like they’re talking and communicating with each other,” said Glen.
“With CSG, everyone came prepared and always knew what everyone else was working on. They knew what they needed someone else to finish before they could get started or what they could get started ahead of time. Our teams worked together seamlessly.
CSG’s approach with DataDx is the same for all clients. To offer industry best practices, provide options, and mentor…but ultimately, leave the decision up to the client.
“Thought and consideration that went into every decision were beyond what we expected from a software development partner and team,” said Glen. “While we have technical staff on our team, CSG made it easy for our leadership team to understand the downstream effects and performance impacts of decisions made in the near term.”
True to pro fashion, CSG walked DataDx through various examples. In one scenario, DataDx was faced with determining the cause of a calculation error.
“They dissected everything,” said Glen. “We wanted to create a slicer where medical expenses could be broken out by the provider. We hit a roadblock because the tables didn’t have a relationship with one another. CSG not only figured it out but gave us options.”
High-level goals vary from client to client, but for CSG, the goal is always the same—provide the client with examples of industry best practices, along with examples of how we may have done something similar in the past.
“CSG demonstrated how using different variables would make our code more readable and pulled the curtain back on various methods of achieving the same result. Always, they left the power to decide in our hands. This is our approach with our own clients in the healthcare field when we empower them with the DataDx platform to make important business decisions, ” Glen said.
“As a bonus, the CSG team is fun to work with. They have personality and every conversation is lively and exciting.”
DataDx started from the ground up, tailoring their solution specifically for medical and dental professionals living in a digital divide. By developing the right partnership with CSG, their SaaS data management platform was elevated for their next phase. Glen was able to take full ownership of organizational data and empower his team to succeed.