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Catching up with Counsyl’s Jonathan Wan after DreamForce

Jonathan Wan, Product Deployment Director

Easiest way to explain what he does: I lead up a team of product managers, platform engineers, and project managers to focus on best ways to deliver Counsyl’s DNA screens to the marketplace.

Jonathan Wan attended DreamForce along with about 150,000 others.
Jonathan Wan attended DreamForce along with about 150,000 others.

Life before Counsyl: I got my masters in civil and environmental engineering at Stanford. I’d always loved the idea of teaching and research. But in 2010, right out of school, I took a job at Counsyl, mostly because I really liked the people I met there. Plus I like living in California and worried that, after making my way through the grind of getting my teaching degree, I’d end up working in Kansas because it’s so hard to find teaching jobs.  

Why he presented at the DreamForce conferenceSalesforce has a new focus on healthcare and likes that we got our platform up and running on our own with lots of unique customizations. For instance, we developed a custom application on the Salesforce platform that sends a follow-up survey to healthcare providers after patients have received their test results. We’re able to broadly and efficiently gather information about how patients are using our test information to take action as a result of that information.

What he told the people who showed up to listen: We’re patient-centered but our client services agents don’t interact with patients face-to-face. They depend upon technology to provide an individualized patient experience. We thought that if we can make the support tools simple and easy for our client services agents to use, they can focus less on searching for keywords and more on supporting patients.

Why he got applause: Our case load per agent has increased by 25 percent but we’ve also reduced our first response time by 30 percent. We’re now able to offer live support for all our patients and clinical staff through essentially any communication platform you can think of. With the new platform, we’re able to experiment with programs that allow us to be more proactive in the patient support process. This is a big deal because we know we’re dealing with patients who are likely going through an anxious time in their lives.

Bonus feedback: Someone from an HMO, who is already working with us, came up afterwards to say he loved what we were doing with our proactive approach to patient engagement. He told me, “We’d like to explore working with you on a program to share patient engagement data.” He wants to help his health plan improve patient satisfaction and retention.

Coolest moment: I was on the Expo floor talking to a sales manager when his face turned ghostly white. I turned around to see what he was looking at and it was Marc Benioff, Salesforce’s CEO, who towers over everyone at 6’5”. He was only five or 10 feet behind me. Having seen Counsyl grow from its humble roots to what it is today, I can only imagine what it must have felt like walking around at his own huge conference.  Definitely inspiring to see the company culture he’s been able to maintain at such a large scale.

Shoutout goes to: The client services and commercial operations platform development teams. Thanks for the support and allowing me to share your story!

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