Providence St. Joseph Health Overcomes Disorder and Achieves Standardization in their BI Development Process with MotioCI

Executive Summary

Providence St. Joseph Health selected IBM Cognos Analytics as its reporting platform for its data modeling and self-service capabilities. Source control or version control was also a requirement for Providence St. Joseph Health so that they could standardize their report development process and eliminate the challenges they experienced with their previous reporting platform. MotioCI was the recommended digital solution that Providence St. Joseph Health selected for their version control requirement that saved them time, money, effort and was the most compatible with Cognos Analytics.

Providence St. Joseph Health’s Version Control Challenges

Before implementing Cognos Analytics and MotioCI, Providence St. Joseph Health was facing challenges of not having a reliable source control system in place for its previous reporting software. Providence St. Joseph Health had a team of developers spread across locations in California and Texas and had no way to prevent two developers from working on the same report at the same time. Providence St. Joseph Health also found that the latest version of a report wasn’t always the latest version. Changes to reports were getting lost and entire reports were getting deleted. They had no reliable method of identifying who made changes, what exact changes occurred, and reports were inadvertently deleted occasionally. Sometimes, development processes would not sync, which caused a large amount of rework to be performed. These recurring issues warranted that version control was a number one priority for Providence St. Joseph Health.

MotioCI Gives Providence St. Joseph Health Control Over Report Development

At Providence St. Joseph Health, both traditional report developers and special groups of “super users” are responsible for developing reports. One of the reasons IBM Cognos Analytics was chosen, was so that this group of super users could take ownership of some of the report development. These super users play a critical role at Providence St. Joseph Health because they have both the clinical and technical knowledge to understand and develop the reporting needs of nurses, nursing managers, and other healthcare roles within the hospital system. With reports being worked on by multiple people and in multiple locations at Providence St. Joseph Health, MotioCI provides the control they need over the entire development process. For example, Providence St. Joseph Health no longer has to worry about multiple developers encroaching on each other’s work. A report must be checked out before any changes can be made to it and to save those changes, it must be checked back in. This feature of MotioCI provides a controlled workflow, ensuring that only one person at a time can edit and save changes to a report. In the scenario where Cognos content was promoted incorrectly, using MotioCI to redeploy the content took Providence St. Joseph Health 30 seconds instead of 30 minutes. With MotioCI in place, they can manage the development of a report from start to finish—when it was touched, what changes were made by whom, did it validate in testing and production, and if it was not authorized, they can rollback.

MotioCI Enforces Standardization at Providence St. Joseph Health

Several features in MotioCI allowed Providence St. Joseph Health to impose their desired standardizations. Providence St. Joseph Health wanted to ensure that all development work is being done within the development environment. Version control provides the visibility that ensures all modifications are being made within the development environment and not within testing or production. For deployments, MotioCI is the required method for promoting reports, datasets, folders, etc. from development, to UAT testing, to production. Without MotioCI for example, someone could just go in and create their own folders in 3 different environments. MotioCI provides an audit trail, ensuring that developers are adhering to the guidelines, naming conventions, and formatting standards for content deployments at Providence St. Joseph Health. Before deploying content to the testing and production environments, developers at Providence St. Joseph are making use of execution time and data validation test cases from MotioCI. Developers are taking a proactive approach and running these test cases to make sure the data is returning as expected and the runtime is within specified thresholds. This way they can troubleshoot the underlying issue before their Cognos reports move further along its development cycle. This process has saved Providence St. Joseph Health approximately $180 per day during the 2-year conversion project by eliminating the wasted back and forth time that used to occur between the testing and development teams.

$ per day is saved by running MotioCI execution time and data validation tests before deploying content to test and prod

Seconds is all it takes to redeploy an incorrect content deployment compared to it taking 30 minutes to redeploy prior to MotioCI

Providence St. Joseph Health chose IBM Cognos Analytics for its self-service capabilities and MotioCI for its version control features. Cognos Analytics allowed more people at Providence St. Joseph to take on the role of report development, while MotioCI provided an audit trail of BI development and prevented multiple people from developing the same content. Version control empowered Providence St. Joseph to achieve their standardization requirements and saved them time and money previously associated with deployments and rework.