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After switching to support Apple mobile devices internally at RehabCare Group, a physical therapy provider with more than 9,000 employees, the company saw a 92 percent reduction in broken devices, CIO Dick Escue said.

Escue recounted the healthcare provider’s switch to support Apple products a few years ago at the CloudBeat conference in Redwood Shores, Calif (you can watch the livestream here). He referred to Apple’s decision to support Microsoft Exchange as one of the biggest and most important moments for his IT department.

“When the CEO got an iPhone — that was the changing point,” Escue explained. “[The CEO] said that it was the easiest-to-use computer that’s ever been created, and that nobody had to teach him how to use it.”

Escue also detailed that when he joined the company in 2006, he decided to make user experience — not privacy or security — the number one priority of the IT department. With that philosophy in mind, he said, “it didn’t take long to solve compliance issues.”

The CEO’s new found love for the iPhone, the IT department’s fresh appreciation for consumer technologies, and the company’s interest in employee satisfaction all contributed to the big Apple shift. Today, RehabCare, which was acquired by Kindred earlier this year, supports its more than 10,000 physical therapists who use iPhones, iPod touches and iPads on the job, Escue said. And all staffers are taking far better care of their devices because they have personal content such as family photos saved on them, he added.

The company also takes a progressive attitude toward cloud computing, and embraces consumer-facing technologies and products — Apple devices, Salesforce and Google, for instance — for most of its mobile and communication needs. “All the innovation is coming out of the consumer side of the world,” Escue said.


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