Efficient client contact for healthcare consultants

We were approached by a private healthcare provider back in 2009. They needed a fast and accurate way to determine the nearest clients (e.g. health partners and/or patients) within range of their consultants. Our TimeTravel drive time & distance data seemed like a good solution and, for more than 10 years, this solution has provided the best possible service to their clients. Here is how it works.

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The varied geography of the UK often means that simply returning the nearest agent by distance isn’t enough. For example, where there are estuaries and rivers, the nearest consultant might appear to be 5 miles away in a straight line, however, in real terms this equates to 45 minutes drive-time on a winding road network. Equally, the straight-line or “crow-fly” distance takes no account of road size or type, for example, it might be quicker to drive 10 miles on a dual carriageway, than 5 miles on twisting country roads.


Our TimeTravel data uses accurate drive-time and distance calculations to provide the results, so the nearest is the real-world nearest based on the actual road network.

We calculated an extensive matrix showing the drive-times and or distances from and to all UK postal sectors and produced it as a flat data file. We then formatted the data so that it could be integrated into SalesForce, our client's Customer Relationship Management system (CRM). Holding pre-calculated TimeTravel data in this way allows our client to stay within their CRM and select their own clients within a certain distance of their consultants, without any of the delays that might occur from an externally hosted solution.


This functionality gives a range of possible applications, from putting individual enquiries in touch with their closest consultant, through to tailoring larger scale communications with a local point of contact.

We provide regular updates of our TimeTravel data to accommodate road network changes. This allows the client to intelligently review their team locations and territories to meet local demand and respond to changing circumstances. We are proud to have helped this client for more than 10 years to offer their partners and patients the best possible service.


An illustration of crow fly distance vs actual shortest journey

An illustration that crow-fly distance, or even closest distance, does not always give you the shortest journey time: the two "closest" consultants are hampered by natural features or a minor road network, whereas the "furthest" consultant lives close to a motorway junction so could reach the client most quickly. 




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