Workflow Automation

IN THIS ARTICLE

Introduction to Workflow Automation

Spruce Workflow Automation lets you automate frequent activities so you no longer have to do them by hand, giving you the opportunity to personalize your communication with patients while staying efficient. For each Automated Workflow, you'll select a trigger that starts the Workflow, the conditions that need to be met in order for the Workflow to run, and the action that the Workflow carries out. 


Automated Workflow components

Every Automated Workflow has three parts:

WHEN (trigger) an event in the system that causes the Workflow to start
IF (conditions) a set of conditions that must be met in order for the Workflow to run
THEN (action) an action that occurs after the trigger if conditions are met

These three parts combine to design an Automated Workflow. Here are two simple examples: 

  • Example: WHEN a text message is received, IF it's after-hours, THEN send a reply including my emergency number. 
  • Example: WHEN a secure message is received, IF no one responds after 15 minutes, THEN send a page to Dr. Smith.

In this article, you will find a list of options you can use to design tailored Automated Workflows for your practice. To implement your Automated Workflow design, message Spruce Support with an outline of your desired Workflow using the structure: WHEN, IF, THEN, for each automation. 


Designing an Automated Workflow

Part 1: WHEN (Triggers) 

You can select one or multiple triggers to initiate a Workflow.

Available triggers:
  • Inbound communication received via certain channel(s)
  • Account created
  • Conversation assigned
  • Inbound phone call received
  • Outbound communication sent via certain channel(s)
  • Outbound phone call placed
  • Spruce Visit submitted by patient 
  • Payment received or failed from patient
  • Message with keyword received via widget
  • Tag added to or removed from conversation
  • Conversation opened
  • Inbound message received and text contains
  • A teammate is paged

Part 2: IF (Conditions)

Conditions are optional. They allow you to specify the exact circumstances in which an Automated Workflow should run once a trigger happens.

Available conditions:
  • Archive state (Example: if the conversation is unarchived, or if the conversation is archived)
  • No recent messages from patient (Example: if the patient has not texted in 3 days)
  • No recent messages from provider (Example: if no secure message has been sent in 3 days)
  • Active schedule (Example: it's during business hours, or it's after business hours)
  • Assignment (Example: if the conversation is unassigned, or if the conversation is assigned to Dr. Smith)
  • Contains tag (Example: if the conversation is tagged with "priority," or if the conversation is not tagged with "follow-up")

Part 3: THEN (Actions) 

Once you have set your trigger and optional conditions, select your desired action, which is the end goal of your Workflow.

Available actions:
  • Send message
  • Apply or remove tag(s)
  • Archive conversation
  • Assign conversation
  • Delay or wait for a defined period of time
  • Post message to conversation
  • Notify providers

Example 1: Simple automated reply

WHEN (Trigger) When a patient contacts the practice via email, fax, SMS, or secure message;
IF (Conditions) If there is no active conversation in progress, indicated by the fact that no provider has messaged the patient within the last 3 hours;
THEN (Actions) Then post a message to the conversation.
  • Select the sender for the message (from: CareFront Health)
  • Write the message text ("Thank you for contacting our practice! We have received your message and we will be in contact as soon as we can.")


Example 2: Payment confirmation

WHEN (Trigger) Payment is received from a patient;
IF (Conditions) N/A (no additional conditions must be met);
THEN (Action) Post a message to the conversation.
  • Select the sender for the message (from: Practice Billing Team)
  • Write the message text ("Thank you for your payment. This message confirms your payment processed successfully.")


Example 3: Patient assignment

WHEN (Trigger) When a patient creates a Spruce Account;
IF (Conditions) N/A (no additional conditions must be met);
THEN (Action) Post a message to the conversation that includes Buttons → tag the conversation → assign the conversation.
  • Select the sender for the message (from: CareFront Office Assistant)
  • Write the message text ("Welcome to Spruce! Now that you have downloaded the app, you can message securely with our entire practice. Please select your doctor, and they will get in touch with you directly.")
  • Define Buttons to be sent within the message: [Dr. Jones] [Dr. Smith] [Dr. Sonya]
  • Configure a subsequent Automated Workflow for each Button 
    • Applies a tag ("Jones," "Smith," or "Sonya")
    • Assigns the conversation to that doctor


Example 3: First contact with a patient on the Spruce app

Automated Workflows can include many layers. This example sends a message to patients who have newly downloaded the Spruce app. The message contains Spruce Buttons, a way of giving patients a pre-defined set of options to do next. When selected by the patient, Buttons are configured to trigger additional Workflows.

WHEN (Trigger) When a patient creates a Spruce Account;
IF (Conditions) N/A (no additional conditions must be met);
THEN (Action) Then post a message to the conversation that includes Buttons.
  • Select the sender for the message (from: Dr. Smith)
  • Write the message text ("Welcome to Spruce! Now that you have downloaded the app, you can message securely with our entire practice.")
  • Define the Buttons to be sent within the message: 
  • [Schedule an Appointment] [Refill a Prescription] [Speak to a Doctor] [Urgent]
  • Configure a subsequent Automated Workflow for each Button
    • [Schedule Appointment] → Post a message to the conversation with links to scheduling and intake.
    • [Refill Prescription] → Post a message to the conversation requesting prescription information, and page the provider in charge of prescription refill.
    • [Speak to a Doctor] → Post a message to the conversation that includes Buttons for urgent and non-urgent needs.
    • [Urgent] → Post a message to the conversation acknowledging the patient, and page the on-call provider to respond.


TIP: To implement an Automated Workflow in your Spruce account, message Spruce Support with an outline of your desired Workflow using the WHEN, IF, THEN structure for each automation.

Not using Spruce yet? Learn more here.

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