Life just got even more convenient for people who live at Seabrook.
The Erickson Living community in Tinton Falls, N.J., emphasizes active living through convenience, activities and events, and proactive health care. To make the Seabrook lifestyle even more accessible to its 1,400 residents, the community recently launched MyErickson, a proprietary app that easily connects community members with everything Seabrook when and how they want to view it.
The free app, currently available for download at Google Play and iTunes, provides in-the-moment access to community information, messages, dining menus, meal balance, activity calendars, transit schedules, local directories, staff information, and much more.
Large type and an intuitive interface make it very easy to use, says Seabrook resident Judy Tier, who uses the app once or twice a week to view her meal balance, events, and staff and resident directories.
As leader of the Welcoming Committee and several other community groups, Judy says, "It is now much easier to talk to new residents about finding information more quickly. The handbook is posted on the app, which is an excellent source of information for new folks."
Years in the making
"The intent was to provide information for our residents whenever they want it, however they want it, and on whatever devices they want," says Erickson Living IT Applications Project Manager Kerri Shirey.
"There is no doubt tech-savvy Baby Boomers expect web-based solutions to support their lifestyle," Shirey says. "Our extensive research with residents and prospects has served as an ideal pathway for making MyErickson a perfect fit to meet the interests and expectations of today's and tomorrow's seniors."
When asked how long it's taken to create the app, Shirey says, "We're still creating it. It's years. The first conversation was in 2013, and we're on the sixth generation."
"Gen one went to Riderwood and Charlestown and stayed with us through 2016. The fifth generation was in June 2016, and that is when we extended it to Lantern Hill. Then in August 2017 we extended it to Seabrook."
Fun with innovation
"It's really fun to be innovative for a dynamic and diverse group like our senior population. It's easy to make assumptions about ageism when it comes to how they use technology, but we started out with a group of about 30 residents at both Charlestown and Riderwood who gave us feedback. They were very forthright, which made it easier for us," Shirey says.
Their feedback included the following comments:
"Keep it simple, clean, high contrast, easy to understand."
"Do not include any kind of social; I don't need another Facebook."
"Make it rich with information about my life at Erickson. That's what I need."
"That's what we've done," says Shirey.
As of October 2017, MyErickson had more than 1,600 users at five Erickson communities, with around 250 users at Seabrook since its rollout just a few months earlier.
"The MyErickson app is part of an overarching technology strategy that offers information that our residents can use to to create a richer lifestyle," Shirey says. "They have the information they need when they need it and where they need it to do simple things, like figure out their day or find out who to ask a question or reach out to a staff member or neighbor.
"I had a resident from Riderwood come up to me after a demo and say to the team, 'You people make life worth living.' My point is it changes things. You no longer have to search through your paperwork or your calendar. You don't have to watch a scrolling message on the television. That's a game changer."