IT Manager & Facilities Director, McCallum Place

McCallum Place is an Eating Disorder Treatment Facility.

  • September 2011: joined as part-time IT contractor
  • October 2012: joined as full-time employee with title IT Specialist
  • Early 2014: I was promoted to IT Manager
  • September 2014: The company was bought by Acadia Healthcare
  • October 2014: I migrated all of the McCallum Place IT infrastructures to Acadia Healthcare. I worked nearly 350 hours that month.
  • November 2014: I was promoted to Facilities Director in addition to my IT Manager duties
  • April 2015: I lost my job. Most of my IT Manager duties had been assumed by Acadia Healthcare after the migration and for a Facilities Director, I was overpaid. I was replaced by an Acadia-hired part-time IT contractor and 3 Facilities people.

When I joined McCallum Place in 2012 as an employee, there was a total of about 60 employees and contractors. Over the next 2 and a half years, the company grew to nearly 200 employees.

Accomplishments and Activities

  • Managed IT vendors for:
    • Avaya PBX telephone system in the main office,
    • a hosted Exchange server located at the vendor’s office,
    • a hosted Windows server located in our main office,
    • the network cable installer for all 6 St Louis locations,
    • the electricians for all 6 St Louis locations,
    • the plumbers at 5 of the 6 St Louis locations
    • and HVAC vendors at 5 of the 6 St Louis locations.
  • Interviewed multiple vendors and selected local cloud vendor to host Exchange server. I selected Network Specialists, Inc as our server vendor. They did a great job for us. I would use them again.
  • Researched vendors for Electronic Medical Records (EMR) software. Selected First Call for the Community Care Link EMR system as the vendor to provide a custom EMR solution. I extensively negotiated the contract with the vendor. Unfortunately McCallum Place was bought before we could sign the contract and the new owners wanted a corporate-wide solution rather than a McCallum Place-only solution and refused to sign the contract.
  • Designed, developed, and implemented a patient assessments web app — designed to run on a tablet — for administering psychological assessments to patients with results viewable by clinicians. The application was developed in Classic ASP (before it was known as ‘Classic’) and MySQL and was HIPAA compliant.
  • Managed bid process with four bidders vying to install a new telephone system at a new Residential Treatment Facility. The plan was to install at the new treatment facility and then roll out to the rest of the company over the next 2 years. The following bids were requested.
    • Windstream already provided the PRI line to support our Avaya PBX phone system in our main office. Naturally, they expected to be our first choice for the new office. They wanted us to select their Allworx system. They were unhappy that I wanted a bid and refused to submit one.
    • S&S Telecom was our network cabling vendor and our Avaya PBX telephone system support vendor. They, like Windstream, just wanted us to use their system, the E-MetroTel system, but it didn’t meet our requirements. At the time, it only supported a single location. McCallum Place had 6 locations that needed telephone connectivity.
    • S&S Telecom submitted an outrageous bid for a ShoreTel system when I didn’t like their bid for the E-MetroTel system.
    • I wanted S&S Telecom to submit a bid for an Avaya IP Office system, but they had stopped supporting that system in favor of the E-MetroTel system and wouldn’t give me a bid for it.
    • CMS Solutions submitted a reasonable bid for the ShoreTel system.
    • VoicePro submitted a bid for the Zultys telephone system.
  • After reviewing all of the bids, asking extensive questions about the products, scrutinizing the contracts, touring the local facilities of CMS Solutions and S&S Telecom, and talking with the companies’ supplied references, I selected the Zultys telephone system. I worked closely with VoicePro to install and configure Zultys telephone system, utilizing an XO Communications PRI circuit. I loved the Zultys telephone system and would select it again. But I would find a different vendor to install and support the system. The Zultys system worked nearly as well as the Avaya IP Office system would have, but was much cheaper.
  • I managed the construction project to open the new Residential Treatment Facility, including electrical contractors, network cabling contractors, telephone, and Internet connectivity providing HIPAA compliance for staff connectivity while providing open connectivity for patients.
  • I managed the construction project to open the new offices for clinicians, including network cabling contractors, telephone, and Internet connectivity for staff.
  • I managed the 3-week construction project to correct shortcomings, identified by the St Louis County Board of Health, in a kitchen storage area.  Construction required wall coverings, new floor, new ceiling, and various changes to plumbing in the kitchen to meet the Board of Health requirements. Work was completed within a tight window, under budget, and ahead of schedule.
  • I managed a construction project to convert a garage to an art studio, in a residential office facility. The residential office facility was a converted house. The garage floor was raised to the level of the house. The walls were insulated. Heating and air conditioning were added. An emergency exit and stairs were added. The garage door was converted into a wall. Walls, doors, floors, and cabinets were all installed to meet codes associated with a mental health treatment center.
  • I managed three IT contractors, temporarily hired by Acadia Healthcare, to help me migrate the McCallum Place IT systems to Acadia Healthcare IT systems following the takeover of McCallum Place by Acadia Healthcare. My temporary team and I, migrated more than 100 desktop computers and laptops, network components, servers, etc., to the Acadia Healthcare standard environment in 3 days.
  • I negotiated the contract with Document & Network Technologies (DNT) to provide labor for printer repair in exchange for purchasing toner from them.  This arrangement saved McCallum Place hundreds of dollars per month.
  • When I joined McCallum Place, the network performance was pitiful. I installed high-performance network switches and Cisco Aironet wireless access points throughout the offices to correct poor network performance throughout the McCallum Place main offices.
  • I set up site-to-site VPNs between the McCallum Place main office and the 5 satellite offices to provide the users with direct network access from all locations in St Louis, MO, and Austin, TX.
  • I purchased all computers, software, and network hardware and configured each for those that would use them.
  • I handled all “help-desk” type requests for all of the employees. The more employees there were, the longer my work-weeks were.
  • Fully responsible for all of IT hardware, software, and systems at McCallum Place prior to the September 2014 buyout by Acadia Healthcare. After the buyout and after the migration, my IT role was reduced to only help-desk type requests. It was at this time that I was promoted to Facilities Director. As Facilities Director, I had 2 subordinates that spent the majority of their time cleaning the facilities and very little time actually working in maintenance.
  • Investigated cleaning contractors, negotiated a contract with Jan-Pro, to take over custodial duties in the 21,000 square foot main facility, and (approx) 8,000+ square-foot spaces in each of the 4 satellite treatment centers and satellite marketing office.
  • Managed plumbers, electricians, HVAC vendors, etc., at all 6 St Louis locations.

Before the buyout, this was my favorite job of my career. After the buyout, not so much. My typical work week in the months leading up to my termination, consisted of 70 and 80 hour weeks and frequent travel between facilities.

© 2017 – 2018, Paul Swarthout. All rights reserved.