In the article Hospitals struggle with pay based on patient satisfaction, the article notes how hospitals are undergoing many efforts to improve customer service and the patient experience since a portion of their reimbursement is based on patient satisfaction. There is talk of lattes, valet parking, and noise reduction. Nice tactics and perks, but it’s still a struggle to make a noticeable improvement.
So why the difficulty? As with any business, to succeed in a hospital-wide initiative on a sustained basis, several aspects of the organization need to be consistently addressed:
- Leadership buys in to the effort, preaches, and walks the talk.
- The organization dedicates resources to the effort.
- Management and staff are hired, trained, incented, and held accountable for how well they deliver on the initiative.
- Processes and organizational structures support the ultimate goal.
- The organization communicates internally and externally to promote the objectives and successes.
- The business truly knows how it’s doing – it measures, measures, measures – listening to the voices of the customers and employees.
It’s never easy to get everybody on the same page, going in the same direction. But since that’s necessary to ensure high levels of patient satisfaction, hospitals need a comprehensive, intentional, documented strategy for patient satisfaction success.
Don’t keep pushing tactics and perks to create a customer-focused culture. Address these core components of sustainable success.
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