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(e)Merging Practice Growth Trends:

  October Update

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Customer Service: Where Does Healthcare Stand?

In a recent article from Forbes, customer service ratings were put to the test.  Overall, for all industries, customer satisfaction ratings averaged around 86%; however, healthcare customer satisfaction ranked within the top 3 industries with 94%.  While this is an encouraging finding for healthcare organizations, it was also shown that smaller companies, ranging from 10-99 employees averaged at 84% customer satisfaction, much lower than larger organizations.  The proposed explanation for this finding was that smaller organizations are not allocating monetary support to improve the patient experience. 

As healthcare managers, staff members and executives; it comes as no surprise to us that there is a direct correlation between patient retention and patient satisfaction.  According to the American Hospital Association, in registered hospitals alone, customers have 5,754 options throughout the United States.  Healthcare can often be linked to such industries as restaurants, hotels and retail stores because there are a wide range of options for customers to choose from if one does not meet their individual standards. 

So, what does it take to drive up customer satisfaction within your organization?  In the study conducted by Forbes, there were three practices that top ranking companies consistently carried out:

  • Immediate response
  • Be where your customers are
  • Let your customers serve themselves

Immediate response is especially crucial in the field of healthcare, patients are often unsure of the meaning of their symptoms, eager to obtain results or anxious about their diagnosis.  All of these issues can lead to an overwhelming amount of questions and voicemails.  It is our responsibility as healthcare professionals to recognize the importance of this aspect of our jobs and work to provide a quick turnaround to our patients' needs.

Being where your customers are relates to the need for healthcare organizations to adopt social media into their communication and engagement strategies.  With a greater amount of organizations joining social networks, customers have greater expectations of healthcare organizations to be available at all times through online communication.  Letting customers serve themselves also ties into this concept; creating open channels of communication in the form of FAQs and self-service portals allow patients to find answers without a significant turnaround time. 

As technology continues to evolve, customers and patients will have greater expectations of your organizations.  With satisfaction ratings near 94% this shows the healthcare industry is making great strides, be sure to push your organization to meet these standards as well!


 

September's Highlights:

It has been great getting back in touch with old colleagues at a variety of conferences this past month.  The AOA Conference is Washington DC, was an especially great group full of insightful discussion and conversation.  The highlight of September was getting to carry out two days of a new workshop myself and consultant, Laurie Beadke created, entitled "Five Stars is Not Just for Hotels".  We were able to meet with two fantastic groups of healthcare managers, staff and administrators to discuss employee engagement, patient experience and social media strategy.  Hopefully, I will get to see many more of you at upcoming workshops!

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                                   Put it into Practice!

Unfortunately, team conflict takes place at one time or another.  How you, as an employee or a leader, handle that conflict can directly result in your career satisfaction.  There are ways to defuse team conflict and when done correctly, can even lead to a more sustainable team!  Here are five great way to end team conflict.

  • Start with the right team: Build complementary teams!
  • Celebrate differences: Collaborate to enhance strengths.
  • Share the same goal: Have a final goal in mind and work togther.
  • Capitalize on individual strengths: Manage tasks according to abilities.
  • Establish team checkpoints: Are we making progress?

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How does your Practice Measure Up?

With our exhaustive 130 point mystery shopping review, you'll know the answer. Give us a call or email Jamie today to discuss how our mystery shopping services can ensure practice growth in 2012!

 


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What's (e)Merge?

(e)Merge is a medical practice growth consulting firm specializing in providing innovative, patient-centric marketing initiatives and medical mystery shopping services that enhance patient experiences to increase referrals.  Our programs are designed to strategically achieve sustained patient volume growth for medical practices and health organizations.

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Give us a call!

1.877.362.6584

816.326.8464

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