My Christmas Eve post, Case study or Industry White Paper?, mentioned a case study by the IBM Software Group as an excellent example of the genre.
Alas, the Focus.com site continues to mistakenly categorize it as an “industry white paper” – something I pointed out in my Dec 25th epistle; ‘White Paper Christmas’.
In today’s post I want to highlight IBM’s customer story and tie it to what I’ve been learning on the case study mentoring course.
First, here are the eight areas where I think this case study is strong:
1) It’s written in a traditional format that moves through the business challenges, the (IBM) solution, and the Benefits experienced by the target customer, University College London Hospitals (UCLH). The reader feels in ‘safe hands’ when following the story’s flow.
2) For readers too busy to go through the complete case study (just three pages), the highlights are succinctly summarized in an “Overview” sidebar.
3) The sub-headlines are in a ‘relaxing’ light blue font – easy on the eye.
4) A featured quote from the customer’s IT Director (also in that pleasing blue font!) adds to the importance of IBM’s solution for a robust Patient Tracking System.
5) Sufficient detail is given about UCLH’s needs and challenges to help the reader see how IBM’s solution components (Lombardi Teamworks and Lombardi Blueprint) are making measurable improvements to patient care.
6) The story adds a human element by showing how vital a streamlined PTS is to the care pathways made available for cancer patients.
7) A final section about the impact of the new PTS which highlighted specific cost savings, reductions in monthly patient complaints concerning administrative procedures.
8) A clear call to action, inviting the reader to visit three specific landing pages on IBM’s site. I visited the Websphere Lombardi page and found additional case studies, white papers, a blog, contact details, and that very important ‘how to order’ information, all attractively displayed.
Case Study Improvements?
This is a very professional document, as one would expect from a company like IBM. However, I would like to make one suggestion.
Replace the stock photo (apologies if the four people shown are medical professionals at UCLH) with an info-graphic that makes it even easier and faster to understand the achievements made in managing patient pathways.
I will be checking out other IBM case studies as part of my own studies and I recommend a similar approach if you have a need to write your own.
Of course you could always hire a professional case study writer, ahem 😉
Mark ‘case study writer‘ McClure