Ed Rumzis can have a hard time unplugging, both in his professional life and his personal life.
“I think it’s hard for me to unplug because I have such a thirst for the next thing,” admits Rumzis, a native of Chicago who received his BS in Computer Science from DeVry University. “But I have six kids. They keep me in line in terms of keeping things in perspective.”
Yet, with more than thirty years of experience in benefits administration technology, Rumzis continues to ensure that technology enables a more consumer-focused healthcare experience. That is one of his main priorities at bswift, where he serves as its chief technology officer.
“I was always interested in customer interaction and the role of technology in that,” says Rumzis, who has served as a technology leader at many large benefits outsourcing companies including TIAA, Hewitt Associates, and Xerox. “So coming to bswift a year and a half ago felt like coming back home.”
In the complex world of healthcare, technology brings opportunities to personalize each experience. Specifically, bswift offers cloud-based benefits administration technology and services for online enrollment, interactive decision support, ACA compliance reporting, and employee engagement.
And for Rumzis, finding effective ways to leverage the newest technology to benefit bswift’s eleven million members is his main goal.
“We have employees and retirees making their healthcare choices with us,” says Rumzis. “A benefits technology must be flexible, scalable, and easily integrated with all the platforms the company is using. The amount of processing power that is available today is mind-blowing.”
Under the umbrella of Aetna, bswift is leading the way in some of the most groundbreaking technologies out there, including conversational interfaces, artificial intelligence, and chatbots.
“It’s amazing being a part of the ecosystem of CVS/Aetna,” Rumzis says. “Their role in healthcare transformation and their investments in technology allow bswift access to groundbreaking solutions in a secure way. We tap into that every day.”
But still, Rumzis encounters his share of challenges.
“By 2025, 75 percent of the workforce will be millennials,” Rumzis states. “It’s a workforce that has grown up with mobile devices, so expectations of anytime/anywhere smartphone experiences are becoming the norm. The challenge is making the small screen space contain a worthwhile and engaging experience.”
There is also the fact that a fair amount of users are hesitant to welcome new technologies.
“Some of the workforce is terrified of it,” says Rumzis. “They are constantly thinking about what is going to happen to their data.”
Giving a personalized experience and choice is key to meet all customer needs, and for that, bswift has an intuitive decision support engine named Ask Emma.
“The premise of Ask Emma was about having a decision-support assistant that was helpful but not pushy,” says Rumzis. “She is the ringleader that all bswift customers can take advantage of. The more information you are willing to share with Emma, the more she can do for you. It’s all about helping you during those key decision-making moments that matter to you.”
One of the most intriguing technological advances is 3-D printing, Rumzis says.
“It’s here, but it’s about to go to the next level by going local,” Rumzis says. “3-D printed sensors have applications in health and safety, productivity, and knowledge delivery, and it will dramatically change the workplace.”
“There will be a day in the not-so-distant future where this type of 3-D printing, with computer chip-infused labels, can also be used as a secondary form of authentication,” he adds.
Of course, that means security and confidentiality must be watched intently.
“Cybersecurity is critical and artificial intelligence is going to play a key role in that, given the amount of data that is produced in this hyper-connected world,” says Rumzis. “It’s about trying to stay ahead of the bad guys, and I think that includes thinking outside of the box with unconventional prevention programs, including consumers owning their data.”