Leading with pragmatism at WSIB Ontario

Valerie Adamo is a self-professed pragmatic leader. Now in the midst of implementing a lifecycle case management program at the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) of Ontario, the chief information officer and vice-president has had ample opportunity to exercise precisely that leadership style.

“It’s really focusing on what drives business value, doing that and doing it well,” said Adamo.

The goal of the Integrated Case and Account Management (ICAM) project is to allow claims to be routed to appropriate decision makers throughout various stages of the process, thereby ensuring efficiency.

One way that pragmatism played into the project was in designing user interfaces. “We do a lot of UI prototyping,” said Adamo. “It’s a lot of ‘Come in and sit down and work your way through it, Mr. or Mrs. User. Is that what you really need?’”

With no fewer than 300,000 claims feeding through the claims process every year, Adamo said plenty of testing and piloting was necessary.

The ICAM project completed phase one in three years. Phase two is currently being piloted to ensure sufficient change management in time for a 2012 completion target.

Adamo recalls the challenges in managing ICAM. For one, the project meant having to deal with legacy technology that formed the backbone of WSIB’s IT infrastructure. Another, was factoring in WSIB’s gradual move to e-services in an effort to eliminate paper in favour of electronic content.

Moreover, the overall system had to be palatable to the range of employees at WSIB. “We know that we need a system that will be usable by the forty year olds and willing to be used by the 20 year olds,” said Adamo.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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