Loretto Swaps Their In-House SMS Solution For SimpleTexting

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Learn why Loretto turned to SimpleTexting to give their organization, the sixth-largest employer in central New York, a more robust internal communications system.

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Loretto is a comprehensive continuing healthcare organization that provides a variety of services for older adults throughout Central New York.

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Find a way to quickly communicate with 2,500 employees, most of which are frontline direct-care workers.

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Loretto cut down message delivery time from hours to minutes and watched their response rates skyrocket.

Loretto is the sixth-largest employer in central New York, communicating daily with a staff of over 2,500. Their 19 programs and services spread out across 20 locations range from meal delivery and transportation assistance to 24/7 assisted living facilities.

For Chief Information Officer Brandon Claps and Chief Marketing and Engagement Officer Julie Sheedy, that means no day is ever quite the same.

With their sights set on a goal of building employee engagement, Brandon and Julie turned to texting as a solution.

But when their in-house developed system wasn’t cutting it, they looked to SimpleTexting to help them find a more comprehensive communication tool.

Two-Way Communication—The Secret SMS Ingredient

When Loretto first looked into text-enabling their employee communications they decided to build their own in-house solution.

At first, it worked well for pushing out notifications, but the inability to respond to the texts limited the way Loretto was able to communicate with staff. They wanted a more robust solution that was more easily accessible and consistently iterating.

That’s when Loretto discovered SimpleTexting.

Since they already had employee phone numbers and permission to text them, uploading phone numbers into the new system and getting started was a breeze.

From there, our API connected Loretto’s dashboard with their HR system auto-updating their contact list regularly.

In a matter of days, Brandon began to send and schedule texts to staff. The difference in the way they started to communicate with employees did not go unnoticed.

“With our previous tool, you just sent a text and never got a response. To be able to get a response and actually have a dialogue with someone has been huge,” remarks Brandon.

In addition to receiving responses, Brandon also remarked on the noticeably improved speed of message delivery. 

“In the past, there was a one-second delay per message. Now our messages are all sent within a couple of minutes!”

"SimpleTexting has been a highly valuable tool for us, I think more than we anticipated just because we have such a challenge trying to reach our frontline workers to give them updates."
Julie Sheedy
Julie Sheedy

Chief Marketing and Engagement Officer

With 65% of their frontline workers not on computers, this efficiency proved even more valuable when COVID-19 reached the U.S.

Your hard work isn’t going unnoticed. Thank you for all you do for Loretto!

Providing Personal And Professional SMS Solutions

When COVID-19 hit New York state, Brandon and Julie began to pivot their usual employee text communications into a strategy to get ahead of their staff’s needs.

They sent out messages with information on childcare for essential workers, meal distributions, even where they could show up for free diaper distribution if they were running low and unable to get to the store.

“We have hard-working employees who run on 12-hour shifts,” notes Julie. “So when things were starting and there were shortages of food in grocery stores, a lot of our staff couldn’t even get to the stores after their shifts to pick up basic supplies like formula or milk.”

In order to learn where they could make a difference for their staff, Julie and her team texted out surveys to find out who was low on supplies, and what they needed.

“We were able to give out 250 emergency food bags right away, and we wouldn’t have had that reach if we had done a survey through email or posting it on our TVs.”

When the schools officially closed down, Loretto sent out another survey assessing the childcare needs of their predominantly female staff.

“Within 10 minutes we had 150 responses,” says Julie. “We knew by age group and by area of town which facilities and who would really be in need. This really helped us with planning ahead and we were also able to work with our County on matching employees to their emergency childcare slots, by using our data.”

In an effort to support our employees, we are looking to help households in emergent need for food. Please take this survey. https://txt.hn/AzQIIN

The Effects Of SMS On Frontline Workers

The effects of COVID-19 will likely last for a while, especially in the healthcare field. Getting ahead of the issues that may arise when non-frontline employees return to the office is also something texting has helped Loretto with.

“The ability to stay in touch with our employees 24/7 has been critically important for us and our business,” says Julie. “There are things we have to get out at a moment’s notice and texting has allowed us to have a balance between those reactive messages as well as those proactive things.”

We’re thankful for the work Loretto and all of the other frontline workers around the world are doing during this global crisis. But we’re also excited to play a roll in all the other communications Loretto plans to share outside this pandemic.

If you’d like to see the impact text-enabling your employee communications can have, give SimpleTexting a try for free for 14-days to experience the effects yourself!

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