Taking control through digital transformation – effective systems

Miss Natalie Berry1, Mr Declan Kelly2

1NZCare Disability, Wellington, New Zealand, 2Aspirico, Cardiff, Ireland

NZCare Disability is a leading national provider supporting over 1500 people across New Zealand. We deliver services under a wide range of disability contracts for a variety of funders including, residential and day services, supported living, flexible disability support, respite, Regional Intellectual Disability Supported Accommodation Services (RIDSAS), and community support.

Three years ago NZCare disability embarked on a transformational new way of working which fundamentally changed the way we did things. Previous experience survey’s identified that people wanted to know more about their goals and progress made to achieving them. We needed to move from managing services through a combination of paper based plans, spreadsheets and systems requiring significant manual intervention to a new electronic, web accessible, CMS (client management system) called iplanit.

Information about people and services is now stored on an online portal with multimedia capability. We can record information about what people are doing and what they want to do and capture a record of progress in multimedia formats. This transformation and modernisation has increased people’s ability to access their own information through a transparent and accessible system, and support them to contribute and communicate their views in a completely new way. This new system allows people to upload and share photo/ media files, access a personal shared calendar, and user messaging function to communicate. The people we support can also choose to give their family/whanau access to their personal iplanit accounts. This includes access to viewing images, videos and sound files, viewing a creation of a record of the person’s life achievements.

The successful implementation of this was underpinned by a comprehensive workforce roll out plan to more than 1500 support workers (some with very limited technical skills and competence) and an inclusive approach to the configuration and development of the system which involved various subject matter expects including support workers. A detailed communication plan was pivotal ensured all stakeholders were kept informed along the way.

The success of this implementation and new way of working is quantified by:

  • feedback from people, family/whanau who say they enjoy the transparency and engagement the systems allows with evidence of increased uptake from wider family/whanau – encouraged by those who already have access to iplanit. People also like the ability to share photos and activities with family/whanau in the manner of social networking without the open exposure of the wider internet, providing a safe environment to communicate.
  • achieving audit certification with three continuous improvements
  • upskilled technical competent workforce supporting the move from class room learning to e-learning
  • significant business efficiencies and compliance with privacy legislation


Declan Kelly, CEO of Aspirico has previously presented at a number of NDS conferences in Brisbane and Sydney and at conferences with the Kings Fund in London. Following 20 years experience leading three international technology businesses, Declan set up the Aspirico business in 2006. In 2010 the company launched iplanit which is a software system designed to meet the needs of all service providers, iplanit has subsequently won numerous awards including the 2019 BILD awards (Behavioural Support Innovation), the 2017 Health Investor award (best technology company) , a number of the UK leading Better Care awards and the US based, Computerworld Honors program.

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