Mediclinic Southern Africa forms part of Mediclinic International, which operates 75 medical facilities in Southern Africa, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates, making it the sixth largest private medical group in the world.
In 2008 the local operation was tasked with managing an international RFI programme and turned to the Mediclinic Southern Africa’s ICT project team to facilitate the collaboration and communication with international vendors that would be responding to the RFI.
“The information sessions that were part of the RFI process required multiple parties to supply us with information, which in a normal RFI process, would require them to physically come in and present this information on one or more occasions at a physical location,” explains Michael Reynders, ICT Project Office Manager, Mediclinic Southern Africa.
“To streamline the process and accommodate the international parties participating in the RFI process we decided to investigate the possibility of using an online collaboration tool to facilitate the question and answer information sessions,” he continues. “Our research soon directed us towards Cisco’s WebEx, as it was the ideal tool to facilitate the information sessions due to its ability to conference call and share documents at the same time.”
WebEx combines desktop sharing through a web browser with voice and video conferencing, so everyone sees and hears the same thing during the session. This offers users a unified conferencing and content sharing collaboration tool that allows a single user to communicate with anyone who has an internet connection, with participants able to utilise the service to connect to the host without the need for a license.
Having assessed Mediclinic’s organisational needs, Internet Solutions submitted a proposal to implement and license the WebEx Meeting Centre and Training Centre Online Classroom solutions, which was immediately accepted. The WebEx Meeting Centre tool was chosen as it offers functionality such as the ability to host collaborative internal and external meeting sessions, be they pre-planned or on the fly, as well as product demos and sales presentations, all while sharing content, documents, applications, desktops, web browsers and web content. Additional capabilities include polling, chat, video sharing, integrated audio conferencing, free integrated Internet voice conferencing, full video, audio and collaboration recording, editing and playback functionality, file transfer and the ability to join and attend meetings using most mobile devices.
“The WebEx Training Centre Online Classroom was an important inclusion in the implementation, as we do a great deal of employee training at all our hospital sites in Southern Africa,” explains Reynders. The WebEx Training Centre Online Classroom also enables users to conduct partner and customer training, if required, and offers all the capabilities of WebEx Meeting Centre, with the addition of registration and scheduling functionality, an automated attendance and assessment tracking and reporting tool and instant feedback tools, along with the ability to run breakout sessions and a hands-on lab. It also offers integrated eCommerce and integration with leading learning management systems.