UMass HW Trust

a row of clothespins

Congruity Works has been working with the UMass HW Trust Fund since 2017 to develop and improve a web application form that offers health & welfare employee benefits for eligible graduate students. Graduate students and postdoc employees fill out applications for their yearly benefits and the application provides reports for staff to submit to insurance companies as needed.


Vision: Develop a client relationship that welcomes big-picture imaginative thinking

When we took on the project in 2017, the Trust used an existing application form written in PHP, which we migrated to Drupal. From 2017 to 2023, Congruity Works did maintenance work and occasionally built new features. In 2023, we decided with the client that it was time to re-architect the underlying structure of the application. Our long term, hands-on relationship with the Trust and its enrollment portal gave us the experience and the vision to see what was possible with the technology.

We worked with the client through a design process that helped them imagine new and better possibilities for their users that a new data architecture would make possible.


Mission: Providing benefits for eligible graduate employees at UMass Amherst

The University of Massachusetts Amherst runs a Health & Welfare Trust that has provided employees with benefits since 2000 and has increased and improved the benefits offered each year. The University makes contributions per employee into the Trust Fund, which is then used to purchase health & welfare benefits for eligible employees.  

Congruity Works programs and maintains the Trust’s enrollment portal, which acts as an applicant dashboard to handle benefits and complex application forms for graduate employees. 


Improving upon existing activity logging and email notification systems

We built an activity logging system and email notification system for applicants. When applicants have completed the initial form, they get a list of assignments such as completing payment and their completion of these activities is logged in their dashboard and visible to admin staff. The system includes smart hyperlinks to other areas of the application form and auto-generated email notifications about application next steps.


Creating user profiles to demonstrate multistep progressive forms

We helped the client conceptualize new possibilities for the user experience of the application. This process led to refinements of steps within the form. We used profiles to walk the client through the process and help them imagine what is possible for their users and make the best decisions at the lowest cost. 

This process led to a conversion from one universal vertical form to a smarter progressive form that is broken into chunks and uses logic to skip through parts of the application that are not needed for a given applicant. 


HIPAA-compliant hosting flexibility

Drupal is a development platform that can extend to other needs fairly easily. It’s open-source, so clients are not paying for the technology itself, but rather the services of hosting and developing it. Drupal offers hosting flexibility and HIPAA-compliant options while reducing developer limitations.