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Transforming and Upgrading a Legacy System: Empowering a Public Research University's Department of Public Health

Services Offered: Application Modernization, Low-code application development

Introduction

The Department of Public Health at a prestigious public research university, renowned for its enrollment numbers and academic excellence, caters to over 54,000 students and 5,000 staff members. This distinguished university offers more than 250 degree programs in over 100 fields of study through its 10 academic schools and colleges. As an R1 Doctoral University with a strong focus on research, it is committed to serving the community with impactful programs.

The Challenge

One such program developed by the Department of Public Health aims to provide support to children from low-income, ‘at-risk’ families by ensuring they grow up in a nurturing, safe, and healthy home environment. Over time, the evidence-based behavioral parenting program has expanded its reach, collaborating with various systems and agencies to cater to caregivers with diverse needs. These systems include public health departments at county and state levels, child welfare systems, early intervention programs, and criminal justice systems.

However, the program faces significant challenges due to its legacy system, which was developed more than three decades ago. The outdated technology is no longer effective in meeting the complex demands of its user base, resulting in high maintenance costs, vendor dependence, and a lack of functional flexibility. Attempts to modernize the system in the past have failed, leading to a decline in the program’s reputation and credibility.

The Solution

After an extensive evaluation of potential solutions, the university decided to partner with Amzur, a Low-Code application development services provider. The cloud-native and multi-experience development capabilities promised a faster ‘time-to-market.’ Combining powerful workflow automation and data management features, the solution aimed to offer enhanced responsiveness and flexibility for program participants.
The key objectives of the legacy transformation exercise were as follows:

Shift from a code-heavy to a configuration-based approach to reduce upfront capital investments.

Decrease technology and vendor dependence by focusing on value delivery and optimizing operational expenditure.

Implement Straight-Through-Processing (STP) for improved efficiency across the entire value chain.

The Results

The transformation project, encompassing over 50 pending change requests, was successfully completed within just four months. The average time to incorporate change requests from program participants significantly dropped from five months to four days. Additionally, the initial capital expenditure costs were reduced by 70%, and ongoing maintenance costs decreased by 30%.

Moreover, the adoption of Amzur’s low-code solution resulted in a substantial reduction of management oversight and quality checks, saving over 50 hours per week. The improved user satisfaction levels led to a wider adoption of the program by various agencies, states, and countries.

Conclusion

By adopting Amzur’s Low-Code services, the university’s Department of Public Health achieved its underlying goal of not only scaling its operations with quality and efficiency but also streamlining and automating multiple inefficient processes. The program now stands in a better position to cater to a broader audience and achieve both scale economies and scope economies, empowering its mission to make a significant impact on the lives of families in need.

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