Located in Charleston, S.C., Bishop Gadsden Episcopal Retirement Community is a Life Plan community serving more than 500 residents and employing 600 team members. The 100+ acre campus features independent living apartments and cottages, as well as an assisted living building, and an award-winning health care center. 

In 2021, Bishop Gadsden and the Information Technology team sought an experienced strategic partner to create a comprehensive five-year IT roadmap to further strengthen the work already in place.


For this project, ThriveWell Tech interviewed Bishop Gadsden leadership, team members, and residents on their technology expectations, needs, and pain points. In addition, they worked closely with Karlie Foster, Director of Information Technology, and her team to complete benchmarking assessments on IT policies and procedures, training, governance and communication, infrastructure, and more.

Across the campus, engineers heat mapped areas for network strength and dead zones, provider throughput, and assessed IT hardware.

Karlie most valued these elements ThriveWell Tech brought to the IT assessment process:

  1. “Incredible depth” of knowledge with cybersecurity and clinical systems
  2. Tiered recommendations for varying budgets
  3. A roadmap that could adapt to shifting priorities
  4. Experience in senior living and outside industries
  5. Collaboration with the on-site IT team

“Trust was also critical,” Karlie says. “No one wants to hear that they need to pull everything out and start fresh, and you need to be able to trust the assessment. Because technology advances so quickly, it can be challenging to build on top of aging systems, but ThriveWell Tech gave us options. They said ‘If you want to do that, here’s how it would work, but if not, here’s how we will do it.’ ”


Bishop Gadsden’s trust was recently confirmed during its CARF International re-accreditation process. As the Director of IT, Karlie was interviewed by surveyors, who are pulled from within the industry they are assessing. The surveyor “seemed surprised by what she saw, the depth of the plan and the resources we were putting toward technology,” Karlie says.


Assessing cybersecurity was Bishop Gadsden’s highest priority, followed by network infrastructure. Says Karlie Foster, “We needed to be certain we were prepared to support what the community’s associates and residents expect to be able to access and accomplish from a technology standpoint.”

Upon completion, the ThriveWell Tech IT Assessment consultant met with the IT team to discuss more than 50 pages of recommendations, charts, and diagrams to help get Bishop Gadsden to its ‘desired state’ of supporting business excellence through ‘never down’ infrastructure, professional engineering and business systems support, and ‘eyes forward’ governance.

ThriveWell Tech’s technology pyramid helped organize areas of attention with a detailed overview of how Bishop Gadsden rated in each area. These ranged from:

  • Optimal/moving toward optimal
  • Partially in place/needs attention
  • Partially in place/needs standardization
  • Not in place/needs significant attention

The IT Assessment created a three-year plan with annual costs.

Necessary technology investments were outlined by capital and operating budgets. Recommendations covered all departments, governance and operations, and included such items as creating an IT Steering Committee; investing in financial software integrations; and new software solutions.


Bishop Gadsden is now three years into the ThriveWell Tech IT Assessment. The senior living operator has invested most heavily in cybersecurity, which included putting a cyberattack contingency and recovery plan in place. Karlie and the IT Team feel fortunate that Bishop Gadsden has the support of its Board, leadership team, and residents to make the investments necessary to carry out ThriveWell Tech’s strategic IT assessment.

“We were very pleased with the partnership and process,” Karlie says. “Whenever I’m considering a new technology project, such as replacing the phone system, I’ll look at the roadmap and lo and behold it will be outlined in the plan.”

Contact ThriveWell Tech today for your IT Assessment & Strategic Roadmap!

Call 877-993-4824 to get started.