We have supported the Department of Veterans Affairs on a variety of projects over several years — from addressing the President’s commitment to ending veteran homelessness to launching the Family Caregiver benefit to developing an employee-focused campaign to transform the patient experience – we have delivered strategic guidance and products that have been effective and well received.
We understand how the agency works, have strong relationships inside and have valued being part of important work to improve veterans’ health and wellbeing.
Here is a quick overview of some of our work with VA done as part of a multi-agency team with Burson-Marsteller, Atlas Research, Deloitte, Booz Allen and Sage Communications.
Addressing Veterans Homelessness –VA Office of Homelessness
We were the lead on developing a Strategic Communications Outreach Plan for reaching the homeless Veteran population; those at risk of homelessness and the broader network of family, friends and former military colleagues of this population. We conducted the qualitative research needed to inform our thinking— interviewing over two dozen stakeholders ranging from leaders of state VA agencies, to national and local non profits in the housing community and VA leaders on the ground. Our end product included a strategy and tactics spanning three years, along with recommendations for metrics to measure the effectiveness of the plan’s implementation.
Launching a New Benefit – VA Family Caregiver Support
We had lead responsibility to produce the Strategic Communications Outreach Plan regarding new, legislatively-directed benefits for families of severely wounded Veterans. This initiative had the intense interest of Congress, the White House and Veteran advocacy organizations. We conducted numerous in-depth interviews with both internal and external stakeholders; facilitated messaging sessions with VA leaders to develop the major themes, tagline and initial products for the communication effort; and then crafted a comprehensive plan that identified audiences, messages, outreach opportunities, and ensured the communications plan was integrated within the larger objectives of the Department and the Secretary.
Introducing a New Program Office – VHA Office of Informatics and Analytics
We developed the initial Strategic Communications Outreach Plan for a new office responsible for the collection and analysis of critical health information; and the oversight of high profile, Veteran-facing health information applications, to include My HealtheVet and the Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record (VLER).
Providing Policy Support – VA Office of the Secretary, Task Force on Warrior Care Coordination and Transition
We stepped in after an urgent request to help address a shortfall in support from a separate contractor to support this high visibility task force co-chaired by the VA Chief of Staff (John Gingrich) and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Health Affairs), Dr. Karen Guice. We quickly established a work plan; supported all key stakeholders; developed briefing slides, background materials and drafted strategic communication strategies for the Task Force Co-Chairs.