Veterans Bridge Home reached out to Apparo for support in streamlining their processes and communications.
We checked in recently with Pete Vacho, Director of Community Engagement at Veterans Bridge Home to learn about the impact of the recent Tech Therapy and Education that he and his staff have been receiving from Apparo. See PDF of Impact Update Snapshot.
Pete reached out to Apparo for support as his organization was migrating to Office 365. Their goals were to minimize duplicative work and needless transitions and to simplify their communications so they could function more effectively.
“We were getting bogged down, looking at over thousands of emails a day,” says Pete. “At one point, one of our teammates had over 10,000 unread emails. I thought, ‘We can’t do this anymore. We have to move forward. We need to be as quick, seamless and efficient as possible to serve our veterans’ complex needs.”
Through Apparo’s Tech Therapy, Ben Knudson built out their SharePoint site and provided guidance on Microsoft products and best practices for Office suite tools.
Pete shares that faced with the pandemic, the migration and additional support was a “blessing.” As he explains, “With Ben’s help, the process was close to seamless. Apparo helped us streamline everything and moved us away from our multi-platform, slower process. I look back and wonder how much our functionality was effected.”
When it came to embarking on Microsoft training, Pete shares that he “worried that change was going to be an issue for our staff who was already putting in a high volume of time to address Veterans needs in the community. Asking them to put in additional time and to believe that it was going to significantly improve our organization was hard. But with these trainings, everyone was really excited and wanted to learn. It was very enjoyable too.”
Pete adds that their experience with their volunteer was great. “Amanda Whitaker, our volunteer trainer from CapTech, seems like part of the family. She’s so familiar with us, I feel spoiled. She’s so patient and that is vital. We have a broad range of educational backgrounds on our staff and she brings everyone’s walls down and makes us all feel comfortable. The training is making our work more efficient and in turn, helping us make Veteran’s lives better, faster.”
The new tools help increase service to Veterans, nearly doubling those served and cutting their wait time for service nearly in half.
Pete described the increased service VBH is now able to deliver. “With our old system we could serve 20-30 veterans a week. Now it’s 40-50. We are helping more veterans because of the new system we have in place. We are on pace to serve to 1,800 veterans and their families, with 2.4 services per family on average. Now, instead of waiting 3-4 days for services, we can help them in 1-2.”
Pete continues, “I have a feeling we’re not even scratching the surface on all of the things that Apparo could do for us. Everything is clicking for us with Apparo and we look forward to continuing the partnership.”
We look forward to the journey ahead, too!