There are so many great things that technology has brought us. When I speak to my grandmother, who was born during the tail end of the Great Depression in the late 30s, she always reminds me to be grateful for the comforts and quick accessibility that technology has granted us. Things like lights at the flick of a switch, and knowledge within a few clicks. And for the cosmetic industry, it has brought about wider exposure and acceptance.
Most of us will admit, especially those of us who remember a time before portable electronic devices, that life has become a lot more convenient. This shift toward consumer convenience has pushed many businesses to expand availability, points of contact, and focus on expediting processing times. As a recent Forbes article states: “convenience is the new competitive.”
This hard-core carpe diem, societal attitude has forced companies into approaching everything with a “get it done quickly” mentality. However, there is at least one area that consumers do not want rushed—customer service conversations. As a matter of fact, a recent study by Gallup found that customers want “thorough” as opposed to “quick” service when it comes to you addressing their concerns. Because of this, one of the most difficult aspects of business right now is determining how to delicately balance getting things done more quickly, and yet building a positive relationship with patients/potential patients at the same time.
If you ask 99% of the workforce how their day was, they will tell you “busy,” and for most of us who are gainfully employed, we can attest to this. In truth, job titles are more like novelties nowadays, that is, not really capturing the scope of work that many employees encounter on a daily basis. Regardless of how busy you and your staff are, based on all indications, in order for your practice’s front desk to be a successful component of your growth equation, patient engagement must be a top priority. In order to accomplish this task, it must be maintained by staff who possess the ability to embrace real-time changes and focus on assisting your customers as they reach out to you. Whether it is an in person or over the phone, contact, adaptability, and expectations are imperative.
For you and your front line, being adaptable means having the ability to switch gears quickly and focus on what is happening in the here and now, no matter the external circumstances. For example, at Dexcomm, we run operations with the mentality that every call is our most important call. It does not matter what other projects staff are working on; our operators are expected to stop all and give each caller on the line their full attention when the phone rings. And, as a matter of fact, every staff member in the company knows that helping our callers is our number one priority. Why mention this? Because when people know what their priorities and expectations are, they will execute plans more quickly, effectively, and consistently.
So, to recap. The two important factors in making it all work cohesively for your practice when it comes to a great customer experience are:
1.STAFFING ADAPTABLE WORKERS
- Some people are very good a quickly switching focus between tasks. Seek those individuals who enjoy the challenge of juggling more than one project at a time.
- How we implement this: Adaptability is one of our staffing and hiring core values.
2. ESTABLISHING PRIORITIES AND EXPECTATIONS FOR CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENT
- Remember that good customer service is subjective. If you are not spelling out exactly what you want accomplished, then you are leaving it up to individual interpretation.
- How we implement this: Expectation or priority of caller treatment is known by all staff members and enforced with quality assurance checkups.
It simply can’t work without both you hiring staff who are equipped to do the job, and you letting them know how you want it done. For example, your staff might be adaptable, but if they don’t know what you expect during customer service interactions, then they won’t know how to proceed in order to effectively assist you. On the other hand, if you have expectations and priorities but nonadaptive staff, then they may not be able to fulfil your requirements.
If you are looking for an answering service partner who knows that every one of your callers is a top priority for your practice, please reach out to us to let us know how we can help. 800 252 5552