Think outside of the customer service box for your private practice.
In private practice these days, it’s not enough simply to hit your marks in terms of customer service. Your patients expect excellence in customer service basics. What makes your office memorable, and what generates positive testimonials and new referrals, is your efforts to go above and beyond expectations and actually delight your patients.
Let’s take a look at what used to be considered “extras” in customer service, and ways that your private practice can step it up.
The Waiting Room
The old way: TV and magazines; signing in on a clipboard or digital terminal; waiting for staff to call your name.
How to delight patients: Provide the option of signing out an iPad (loaded with fun games and social media apps) for use in the waiting room and exam room; institute procedure of personally greeting patients by every staff member at the check-in desk; train staff to approach patients quietly and greet them by name.
Comfort of the Exam Room
The old way: Muzak and instructional posters
How to delight patients: Option to choose music, white noise, or silence from a tablet using dock speakers; a complimentary copy of a lifestyle magazine tailored to that patient’s personal interests. Save the clinical instruction and educational materials for your face-to-face interactions.
The old way: Waiting for available desk staff; expectation of payment before leaving the visit; an appointment card with a handwritten appointment date and time.
How to delight patients: Guaranteed check-out service within a few seconds of approaching the desk; options for pre-arranged billing to avoid stressful conversations about payment; availability of email, phone, or text reminders about upcoming visits.
Consider the direction that private practice customer service has been moving. Some or all of the things we’ve just described will be standard practice soon. You can institute a culture of innovation around customer service for your private practice that will continue serving your business for years to come.
Wrestling with customer service expectations and other private practice conondrums? You don’t have to go it alone. Take a look at our program 12 Secrets of Private Practice Mastery.