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Company: athenahealth
Category: Employer of the Year - Health Products & Services

Nomination Title: athenahealth



athenahealth partners with healthcare organizations across the care continuum to drive clinical and operational results. Our expert teams build modern technology on an open, connected ecosystem, yielding insights that make a difference for our customers and their patients. In 2019, a new athenahealth was formed, bringing together two companies with decades of experience in healthcare technology, athenahealth, Inc. and Virence Health, under private equity ownership.

Our combined technology, insight, expertise, and customer base give us a vast, nationwide footprint. That’s why we’re uniquely positioned to unlock and understand healthcare data from across the nation. Through the expansion of our revenue cycle management, clinical record, patient engagement services, and the opening of our network to other partners, care settings, and providers, we seek out — and eliminate — obstacles to a smarter healthcare experience.

Our vision is to create a thriving ecosystem that delivers accessible, high-quality, and sustainable healthcare for all, and we are pursuing this through our medical record, revenue cycle, patient engagement, and care coordination service offerings.

Our culture is our people. athenahealth’s passionate, intelligent, innovative employees are dedicated to transforming healthcare. We believe an environment that welcomes, develops, and promotes all employees is crucial for reaching that goal.

Much of the work that HR completed in 2019 was related to the company’s integration efforts. Our team was tasked with mapping job profiles, working with leaders on the new organization design and crafting a new benefits package for 2020. Some wins from that included rolling out flexible PTO to our exempt population and extending the athenahealth sabbatical program to legacy Virence Health employees. We introduced an education assistance benefit in 2019 and we are currently taking applications for athenaScholars, a new scholarship for dependents of athenistas (athenahealth’s employees) enrolling in STEM or healthcare education programs.

Importantly, we were tasked with enabling the evolution of our culture as we went through major organizational changes. Our Learning &Development team, athenaUniversity, solicited feedback on our corporate culture from athenistas which was compiled and presented to leadership. They used that information to update our company values: Obsess over Customers, Make a Difference, Value Everyone, amongst others. To welcome legacy Virence Health employees to the athenahealth brand, our athenaUniversity team put these 700 “new” athenistas through the same three-day orientation class that all new hires attend before the end of 2019.

The significance of these achievements has been highlighted in our employees’ ability to perform during the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus that was put on living the values that we espouse reinforces in our employees that they have an important role to play in supporting our customers: doctors across the country. It is hard to speak to the speed of our integration compared to others in the industry as each time two companies come together is different, but the proof of its effectiveness lies in the unparalleled support we’ve been able to provide our customers during this unprecedented time. Our integration efforts to bring two companies together now allows us to work as one towards our shared vision, during a time where our employees and customers are being challenged in new ways.

athenahealth has always considered its employees to be its greatest asset. The enhancement of our benefits allows us to “walk the walk” and give employees the resources and flexibility that they need to focus on their own physical, emotional, and mental well-being during these unprecedented times, as well as tools to develop themselves professionally.

It is notable that many of these projects were accomplished while the team was managing through leadership changes on the executive leadership team and within HR. We welcomed a Chief Human Resources Officer in July of 2019 and a VP of Total Rewards in December of 2019. It speaks to the tenacity of this HR team that we were able to move these projects forward while simultaneously bringing new leaders up to speed.

Specifically, in a February 2020 interview with Becker’s Hospital Review, our CEO, Bob Segert, said “we had two strong employee and customer cultures come together, and the result is a motivated, passionate team who are obsessed with driving customer satisfaction and results… We are truly working as one company — we have a single vision, a single set of core values and behaviors, and a clearly articulated strategy to move each product line forward and expand synergies between them.”

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