Cullman Economic Development Agency Director Dale Greer and Sequence Health CEO John Richmond at the front door of the new Cullman facility / W.C. Mann
CULLMAN – On Wednesday afternoon, the Cullman Economic Development Agency (CEDA) welcomed Sequence Health to the area, as the company officially opened its new 15,000-square-foot medical call center at 1535 County Road 222. Sequence joins Topre America, North Alabama Fabricating, and Advanced Heat Treat Corporation in Cullman’s Industrial Park III.
Sequence Health describes itself as “a performance-optimizing technology and services company empowering healthcare organizations to bridge the communication, education, and outcomes gaps within the patient-provider relationship. We equip clients to acquire, manage and retain patients and realize optimal results throughout the patient experience.”
In Oct. 2016, Sequence Health moved its call center from Atlanta to Hanceville, temporarily locating at Wallace State Community College (WSCC), which provided an incubator site to get the local center running while the new facility was being built. The company moved into the industrial park location in Dec. 2017.
In announcing the move to the company, Sequence Health Medical Call Center Director Shedrick Hunter wrote, “With a lot of hard work from many members of our Medical Call Center team, it was a very smooth experience. Thank you to all for the effort, high spirits, and willingness to jump in and be self-sufficient when needed! . . . No detail was overlooked in our vision for the ultimate medical call center facility. Staffed both by seasoned experts from our old Atlanta call center and new recruits from Cullman and Wallace State, we’re more positioned than ever to deliver our best-in-class outsourced healthcare call center services.” For the full announcement, see https://sequencehealth.com/blog/call-center-move.
Sequence Health’s new call center is set up for a staff of 121, including regular representatives plus medical professionals who can talk with callers about conditions and symptoms, help determine the urgency of treatment, and get callers connected to physicians. The service is not just local; the call center serves customers across the nation. The company’s specialties include bariatrics, orthopedics, and obstetrics/gynecology. According to Hunter, the building was designed for future expansion, so the number of employees is intended to rise.
After the ribbon cutting, Sequence Health CEO John Richmond spoke to The Tribune about the decision to relocate the call center from Atlanta to Cullman.
“I think it was two things: it was really the quality and the caliber of the people here–we’ve been really, really impressed with the caliber of the workforce, to be able to recruit. They have all the professional skills to work, and have all the people skills that are a really good match for our organization and the needs of our call center.
“And secondly, really, it was just the community environment and teamwork that was demonstrated by everybody from the city leaders, business leaders, the state level; all came together to make it a very attractive place (and) destination for us, where we knew that there would be a long-term partnership.”
Inside the call center, Hunter added, “We looked at Cullman, as well as the Wallace State Community College; and they had a (curriculum) structure that was set up for, I believe, medical. And that was kind of something we’re interested in, to try and get representatives who had that background or that skill set, and so we thought that this would be a great place to be, along with some proposals that were presented to us to relocate the center.”
Of the partnership with WSCC, Hunter said, “Oh my God, it’s been wonderful! We have hired thus far, I believe, three full-time nurses from the Wallace State pool. The productivity has just been phenomenal. It’s just been an easy process for candidates. Even our regular call center representatives: we have good deal of them who have just transitioned right out of Wallace State into our workforce, so it’s been a great partnership. (Wallace State President) Dr. (Vicki) Karolewics and her staff have been instrumental in making sure that we’ve been successful, so it’s been great.”
Richmond spoke highly of the 2016-17 incubator partnership between Sequence and WSCC, saying, “When we realized there was not an existing building that would meet our needs, we knew we needed to build a new facility. The only way we could do that was if there was an interim solution; and Dr. Karolewics and Wallace State stepped up and offered to us to occupy a full floor of Wallace State’s Bailey Building. Without that sort of support, we would not be here today in Cullman.
“So we were actually working within the president’s office right next door. So they were gracious hosts, helping us with IT and just every way you could possibly imagine. They were the best partners and the best hosts. We can’t thank them enough for making it possible for us to be here in Cullman.”
Hunter noted that Sequence is still currently hiring, saying, “We’re always looking for employees who are energetic, trainable, teachable. It’s a great company to work for, definitely able to expand your knowledge and your horizon, as it relates to patient care.”
Richmond concluded with compliments to the Cullman area’s workforce and leaders. “We could not be more impressed and happy about the workforce that we’ve been able to attract so far. We’ve seen, since we moved from Atlanta to Cullman–which was about 15 months ago–we’ve seen a nice improvement in the quality of our service. And I also want people from Cullman to know that they have, when it comes from the leadership of the city, that they are in good hands. Their ability to creatively solve problems and work together as a team to bring business to the community is second to none, and it’s been really impressive to us as we’ve gone through this process and talked to many different cities across the Southeast.”
For more information about the Sequence Health call center, including links to employment opportunities, visit https://sequencehealth.com/services/medical-call-center/.
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