Case studies

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center


University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) is a cohesive health delivery system located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with 40 academic, community, and specialty hospitals. They are the largest non-government employer in the state, with 89,000 staff members and 4,900 employed doctors. Several hospitals hold top-ranked status, including UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside, which is one of only nine hospitals ranked in the nation’s top 20 of America’s Best Hospitals for 10 years in a row by U.S. News & World Report.


  • Healthcare

Business drivers

  • Increase operator efficiency
  • Streamline operator workflows
  • Support contact center consolidation efforts


  • Console and web directory


  • Improved operator onboarding
  • Reduced the average number of clicks
  • Required to quickly access staff contact details

The challenge

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) consolidated several operator locations into a single, integrated team responsible for handling calls and initiating codes for four of UPMC’s large, urban hospitals: UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital, UPMC Presbyterian, and UPMC Shadyside. After consolidation took place, they discovered a great deal of variability existed in terms of the way calls were managed. Operators were having difficulty quickly connecting to the right people. According to Colleen Sullivan, director of operations at UPMC, they wanted to standardize operator workflows. “We found that operators at each location had differing console views,” explained Sullivan. “Nothing was consistent, from naming convention to speed dial numbers.” In addition, contact details were located in separate tabs for each of UPMC’s eight facilities. Operators were required to navigate through four or more clicks to access this information.

The consolidation process would not have happened so smoothly if we didn’t have Spok.

– Colleen Sullivan, Director of Operations, UPMC Contact Center

The solution

Using Spok, UPMC created one console view and implemented a single tab to access contact details. Now, operators have all the information they need at their fingertips. They have a full view of a contact’s name, title, and pager number, in addition to the contact’s location and main department phone number. “The consolidation process would not have happened so smoothly if we didn’t have Spok,” says Sullivan. “And, the operator feedback has been overwhelmingly positive regarding ease of use.”

The result

With a centralized view and a single tab for accessing contact details, UPMC has improved the operator onboarding process substantially. New operators find the system more efficient and less intimidating. In addition, they’ve reduced the number of clicks an operator must take to access hospital contact details (from four or more clicks to just one).