Across the country, there are thousands of community care clinics that offer high-quality primary and mental health care to vulnerable populations that have a desperate need for their services. Yet, many also experience high appointment cancellation rates and difficulty retaining some of their most high-needs patients. There is a plethora of potential causes: issues with patient reminders of upcoming appointments, problems securing reliable transportation, uncomfortable or uninviting waiting areas, the lack of a streamlined appointment scheduling system, and much more.
The Importance Of Customer Experience
“Scheduling, seeing a physician, filling a prescription at the clinic’s pharmacy, updating medical records, telephone manners – these are all processes. They are something that the patient is going through and experiencing each time that can give a positive or negative impression of your clinic,” says Rick Crump, Founder and CEO of KineticXperience, a managerial consulting firm near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
KineticXperience works with organizations throughout the United States, providing guidance and expertise to improve the customer experience that impacts their bottom line. Mr. Crump has over twenty years of experience working with companies in health care, finance, technology, and logistics.
At the 2019 OPEN MINDS Technology & Informatics Institute in Philadelphia, Mr. Crump will lead a discussion on customer experience strategies from a number of unique industries, and how these can be applied within the behavioral health industry.
Mr. Crump firmly believes that customer experience is important in a clinical setting. “Your organization should be asking what it is doing to engage, retain, and anticipate the needs of your clients. Customer experience is a hot topic, but it’s no longer just a focus within retail. Your organization should be analyzing your customer’s experience to help identify where you can create impactful touch points in your client’s journey to keep them engaged and satisfied with your services.”
Mr. Crump advises that the best place to start when evaluating customer experience is by revisiting the organization’s brand. Asking questions like “what is the organization trying to accomplish with its brand?” and “how successful is the organization with their brand?” can be insightful. Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon and owner of the Washington Post, has been quoted as saying that your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room. This drives a series of behaviors.
According to Mr. Crump, “What you say as a client of KineticXperience, when I’m not in the room, will determine whether you keep me for current business, consider me for future business, or recommend me to help others with their business.” Exploring brand success indicators, such as retention, growth, and advocacy, can provide valuable insight into an organization’s brand effectiveness and the service experience of its customers.
What Is The Outcome Of Positive Customer Experience?
Advocacy is one of the key outcomes of positive customer experience frequently overlooked in the health and human services industry. Mr. Crump highlights this as important for all industries. Good customer experience develops long term relationships with patients, resulting in a willingness to advocate services to others (e.g., refer business). There is a greater chance of advocacy occurring when an organization is effective in providing good service and an enjoyable customer experience. This advocacy can lead to better retention of customers and business growth; other critical outcomes resulting from superior customer experience. These are vital for care providers to handle barriers such as increased costs, new compliance issues in the industry, and low reimbursement rates that may not cover the cost of services.
Customer experience is a factor that cannot be underestimated. “Not every touch point with a customer is equal,” says Mr. Crump. “Some have much more impact in defining your perception of a brand. We call these moments of truth.” Organizations must emphasize those truths to have success in improving and maintaining positive experiences for customers. For instance, when you buy life insurance, there are a number of touch points with the brand you choose. You’ll likely go to their website for research, speak to a financial advisor or agent to get a quote, and if you purchase a policy, you’ll have to meet with one of their clinicians to undergo medical tests. Then, you’ll begin the repetition of paying premiums, and one day, perhaps, speak to customer service to make a change to beneficiaries.
But the moment of truth will be when you have to file what’s called a death benefit claim. If you have a bad claims experience, you’ll never recommend that brand to anyone else, and you’ll probably never speak to that financial advisor again. Moments of truth define a brand, and it’s critical that you executive them flawlessly.”
On summing up the customer experience, Mr. Crump said, “it’s not just about reducing complaints or making somebody happy. You should be putting yourself out there and say, ‘no, this is linked to retention. We think this is really linked to advocacy. If we can be easier to do business with, people will actually advocate our product or give us more share of wallet or more clients will come on board.’ So, I think it’s very important to convey that this is about measurable results that translate into meaningful impact.
Welligent provides a fully integrated, cloud-based electronic health records platform and mobile apps to help you work smarter. We have complete solutions that can streamline your practice management, clinical documentation, revenue cycle, and more. We serve behavioral health, human services, public health, foster care, I/DD, and student health communities across the country. www.welligent.com. Norfolk, Virginia.
Relationship Between Welligent & KineticXperience
The relationship is referred to as a “channel or strategic partnership.” KineticXperience helps practices optimize business performance and customer experience, with Welligent providing the electronic health records platform that makes it all possible.
Welligent is the sponsor of Mr. Crump’s presentation at the 2019 OPEN MINDS Technology & Informatics Institute in Philadelphia.