Aurora Innovation in Health Care

Over a two-year period, Strategos supported Advocate Aurora Health, a major health care delivery system in the midwestern United States, on innovation in healthcare to sustain and extend their industry-leading role amidst the rapid transformation of health care in the US.

Aurora Health Care is an integrated, not-for-profit, and all-for-people health care provider formed in 1984 and today serves communities throughout eastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois. It operates 15 hospitals, more than 150 clinics and 70 pharmacies in 30 communities. With 33,000 caregivers, 1800 physicians it serves more than 1.2 million patients. In 2016 its revenue was $5.1 billion.

In the face of substantial changes in health care reimbursement models in the United States and major shifts in consumers’ attitudes about health and wellness, our client wished to establish an enduring capability for innovation with broad involvement of employees. The desired scope included the identification of white space opportunities, core business expansion, and operational improvements.

Major elements of the innovation program included:

  • A collaborative innovation assessment that identified existing strengths, built an innovation capability strategy, and got executive leadership on the same page in defining Advocate Aurora’s innovation-related aspirations
  • White-space innovation challenges that trained Advocate Aurora employees how to identify forces of change, challenge conventional wisdom, and leverage Advocate Aurora’s competences to enter new business areas
  • Step-wise Agile Commercialization efforts in which small launch teams identified and tested key hypotheses behind new business ideas and made the needed adjustments to prepare for market launch and scaling
  • Establishment of governance structures including an Innovation Board, new processes such as innovation pipeline management, and employee resources including training modules and tools to make innovation stick

“We worked with Strategos to develop a robust, sustainable innovation capability at Advocate Aurora Health. Strategos helped us to identify, develop, and market-test a portfolio of new business opportunities, tap the creativity of employees to find and execute ways to enrich the patient experience, train the next generation of Advocate Aurora innovators, and build the supporting processes and structures to make innovation a permanent part of how we do business. 

“I particularly valued the partnership we built with Strategos’ highly-focused team of seasoned innovation experts; it was great to have the dedicated, ongoing attention of a small group of innovation veterans whose guidance I could trust.”

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