A Q&A with Neal Schwartz, MedeAnalytics COO
In March, we welcomed Neal Schwartz as our new chief operating officer (COO). Neal was brought on to oversee daily operations, define goals and metrics, and create a culture of customer success and satisfaction. Neal brings more than 25 years of consulting and executive leadership experience to the role. We caught up with Neal to hear more about his background, what he’s observed so far, and what he hopes to accomplish in the year ahead.
Q: What can you tell us about your experiences prior to joining MedeAnalytics?
A: I’ve worked in healthcare IT for 15 years, most recently with Cerner. My first 11 years there were with CernerWorks, a remote data center operation, which we grew to more than 450 clients and a billion-dollar business. We found great success in client satisfaction and value achievement.
I spent the next few years with Cerner running their worldwide consulting operations, driving operational efficiencies, building methodologies, boosting leadership development, and other activities to support our 5,000 consultants in the field.
Before Cerner, I worked at an e-procurement company and in my family’s business. From day one, I’ve been focused on operations. It’s in my DNA. I see everything through the lens of continuous improvement and operational efficiency, looking at operations with a critical eye to find ways that we can be better.
Q: What do you want to say to our clients?
A: My intention is to be very hands-on with our clients and do all I can to work with our account managers and delivery associates to improve our client partnerships. I pride myself on being transparent and will make myself available to those clients who would like to meet with me. I recognize that Mede has gone through significant change over the past year or so, and change isn’t always easy. But we’re listening and driving continuous improvements throughout the company that will only make our client relationships stronger.
Q: In your first few weeks at Mede, what have you seen and what are you most excited about?
A: There are three areas where I’ve witnessed great activity within MedeAnalytics: our technology, our clients, and our employee base. Having been in healthcare IT and with Cerner for as long as I was, I can tell you that the elite capabilities in the MedeWorks platform are not available anywhere else in the industry. The platform ingests data sources from all walks of healthcare, uses cutting-edge data orchestration technology, and makes data meaningful for our clients. Nobody else does this holistically across payers and providers the way that we do. I’ve had the privilege to dig in, and the technology our teams are creating is incredible; it’s actually jaw-dropping.
As for our clients, it’s clear that they are some of the most sophisticated people in healthcare. One of the reasons I joined the company is the litany of prestigious clients that Mede has. Because they are so sharp and knowledgeable, it only makes us better. They’ve raised the bar, and we’re doing all we can to meet their expectations.
Internally, our employees are very optimistic and driven to succeed. They’re hungry for knowledge and show great sophistication and intellectualism. Plus, they make work fun!
Q: What are some of your primary objectives now that you’re on board?
A: The primary lynchpin of the company rests on our ability to upgrade clients to the new SaaS MedeWorks platform. I give great credit to Scott Hampel for his work in laying out our product strategy and to Tyler Downs and his team for building the platform from the ground up. With product strategy and technology firmly in place, we now need to shore up the operations side of the business to ensure the structural integrity of the proverbial three-legged stool. This will involve building the methodology, infrastructure, project management disciplines, and more to upgrade our clients as quickly as possible so they can benefit from the platform.
Q: What do you see as the biggest opportunity for MedeAnalytics clients?
A: There are many clients who have partnered with Mede for a long time. The future for our clients lies in the SaaS capabilities we’re developing to transform to a platform as a service. This will give them the ability to customize and create different solutions to achieve the flexibility and capabilities that they don’t have today.
Q: What are Mede’s priorities for the coming year? What role will you play in making those priorities a reality?
A: I’ve talked a lot about the MedeWorks platform, so that’s certainly a priority. On top of that, we want to invest in the company to improve the maturity of the operations side of the business. This is all about scale and efficiencies so we can more rapidly meet our clients’ needs. If we’re able to do that, we’ll see far more certainty in the eyes of our clients.
Q: How do you see MedeAnalytics growing or evolving to support our clients?
A: Paul (CEO) says we want to move from a systems integration company to a SaaS company. If we can build the capabilities and functionality on a cutting-edge platform, clients can do with it as they may. We can help our clients achieve their goals through a simple, easy-to-use, accessible, and modern platform. This will give our clients the flexibility and autonomy to do what they need with their data to meet their strategic goals.
At the same time, we’re going to hold ourselves accountable to deliver the most optimal client experience. Equally important as the platform is being true partners to our clients, sharing the same objectives, and collaborating to meet their goals.
At the end of the day, it’s all about being intentional about client services, accountability, and measuring client satisfaction. Our clients will certainly benefit from this change.
MedeAnalytics strives to help consumers make #evensmarterdecisions when it comes to healthcare. With Neal’s expertise, we’re better able to help our clients improve upon their overall organizational goals. To learn more about Neal and the rest of our leadership team, click here. To understand how we can help your organization, contact us here.