It’s newsletter time again. This, like the last few months, has been extremely busy with the product we are developing which you saw in today’s Town Hall. This product is going to change Lone Star and establish itself as a provider of nationwide solutions. As you saw in the Town Hall, this is not just a bunch of systems tied together, this is a true development project. We took three of the best-in-class vendors and worked together to develop a system that is needed in the industry to solve several problems in all hospitals. All hospitals have too many falls, whether it’s one fall or 20, and we have a way to improve the fall rate in facilities. All hospitals want to improve the patient experience, and we now have a way to analyze, discover what can be improved, make changes to improve the environment, and analyze if the change made a difference. We can help any facility with this solution. Only time will tell of course, and that is why we are undertaking three beta sites, or test sites where we are providing the solution and the staff to facilitate improvement and document the outcome for the facility. The purpose is to help with a few facilities but also to gather the data for our NSI studies. NSIs will be published to show the effectiveness of our system.
This month we had our quarterly SPC, Strategic Planning Committee meeting. This is a day-and-a-half-long meeting where we look at our Rocks and initiatives and measure our progress. We discuss and debate where we are and the progress to date and whether we are complete with the initiative or we need to extend the Rock another quarter. Some Rocks are ongoing, and we change the focus from quarter to quarter, such as the One Lone Star initiative. This was originally started to find a way to get all four regions to perform processes uniformly. It has gone to various focuses such as using the same estimating tool, doing estimates the same in all offices, aligning labor rates, aligning project management, and is now including the LEAN process improvement. This is one of the most important initiatives we have established.
During this SPC, we established one new initiative and extended the other four for another quarter. The new Rock for the quarter is built around Alairo and covers everything from development to marketing to testing to the beta site and beyond. This will be a big one and we have five different individuals responsible for each section of the Rock. This process is how we are making Lone Star better. Ask your COO or manager to explain the new Rock and what it will achieve.
We followed up the SPC with another multi-day meeting, the SD6 conference. The SD6 is a group of Rauland distributors that first got together in 2008 and discussed the need for a group to share best practices specifically around the, at that time, new Responder 5 system by Rauland. We had our first official meeting in 2009 after the NSCA BLC conference in Florida. Then in January of 2010, we met again in DFW hosted by Lone Star and met every 6 months hosted by a different SD6 partner company for the first three years. Then we settled on once a year, 3rd week in April time frame. This group has evolved over the years to become a close group of friends and colleagues from the top down through the different groups: IT, CAS, Operations, etc. We have exchanged a lot of ideas, best practices, and developments within our companies. The group currently consists of 5 of the biggest and best Rauland distributors: Beacon, ECD, Lone Star Communications, SWC, and Ronco. All of these companies are as successful as Lone Star Communications has been and as a result, these companies have sold most of the hospitals in their territory as we have at Lone Star. Therefore, we either need a new system from Rauland to create the need to replace the older Responder systems we have installed, or we need a new focus.
This year Lone Star had the honor of kicking off the three-day SD6 conference with a presentation on where the Health Care market is going and where we are going to remain a relevant part of the industry. That was our message and that is why Lone Star developed the Alairo solution. We discussed the industry we are in and the problems in this space where we can have an impact and the challenges that hospitals face and what we can do to help. Most importantly, Alairo provides a needed solution, but it also moves Lone Star Communications, and those companies that sell it, deeper into the consultive world of providing a path for these companies to improve or Transform Health Care, which is Lone Star Communications’ BHAG or long-term goal. We discussed the use of analytics, how and why our system is designed, and where it can go from the first version. This was a conversation starter that generated conversations with every group and Lone Star came away with more ideas and validation of the product we developed.
We developed this system from day one as a product that would be distributed nationwide through the SD6 group. It was well received, and it confirmed our thought that we have a lot to do to get this product ready for distribution by others. That is the basis of the Alairo Rock we established in the SPC in anticipation of this theory. The SD6 group will be instrumental in making this product a success.
Well, that’s all for now! We have a lot to do, and we have an Outstanding plan to get there! Thank you for everything you do for Lone Star every day. You are the reason Lone Star Communications is successful and have made Lone Star what it is today. As always, thank you for being a Lone Star employee.
Until next time,
Ray - President