hospital

Create a Common Definition of Customer Service - 9/15/20


Peter, Paul, and Marie are co-workers. They are all customer service representatives.  When Peter thinks of good customer service, he defines it as being friendly to the customer. “And I am friendly,” Peter says.  “That’s why I don’t know why they send me to customer service training.” Paul thinks customer Read more

COVID-19 Demand Management Strategies for Customer Service Channels


We all want demand for our products or services.  This helps us to generate revenue and to provide something of value to our customers and communities.  But customer demand does not strictly relate to products and services.  Demand also relates to communications, information, issue resolution, education, and other aspects Read more

Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance? - 9/8/20


This is a quote by Edgar Bergen.  He’s one of the most famous ventriloquists of all time, but I guess he wasn’t necessarily one of the hardest workers of all time.  By sharing this quote, I am not supporting the idea that we shouldn’t work hard…or am I? We only Read more

Reach Out More for COVID-19 Customer Retention


Ever since the Coronavirus pandemic became a reality for individuals, their communities, and their countries, it became clear that people were going to be hurting…that lives were going to be changing…that the realities of the past were going to be very different from the current and near-term future realities. When Read more

Using I, We, or You in Customer Service - 9/1/20


It’s amazing how many conversations can go horribly wrong or incredibly right, not because of the use of a 4-letter word, but simply because of the use of a 1, 2, or 3-letter word – I, We, You. The incorrect use of I, We, You in conversations causes problems more Read more

Get Your Guru On - 8/25/20


You may have heard of management gurus - these people who seemed to know all and be all, to have the wisdom of 1000 leaders.  Maybe you’ve heard it in your industry as a guru in sports psychology or the master of economics or sociology or human behavior. And so Read more

Whether You Believe You Can Do a Thing or Not, You Are Right - 8/18/20


This is a famous Henry Ford quote, and the quote is all about self-belief, all about confidence. We’ve often spoken about the need to be confident and how to gain confidence, because that confidence - or the lack thereof - is imparted on the customer. But how does a customer tell Read more

Grind it out Today for a Better Tomorrow - 8/11/20


It’s been said that You Learn Perseverance by Persevering.  You are becoming mentally tougher right now.  The pain and the difficulties and the change today are making you stronger for dealing with the uncertainties of tomorrow. We’re all having to be more flexible.  We are all facing less consistency, less Read more

Increase Research for Improved Customer Relations During COVID-19


What makes a relationship? Many actions can make or break a relationship, but all solid relationships require at least two things: Communication and Caring. And customer relationships are no different in this respect. No Communication = No Connection If we don’t have some frequency of dialogue with the customer, then we Read more

Never Before… - 8/4/20


The importance of customer service is at the forefront again in our economy.  We noticed this clearly in the early 2000s when the country’s economy struggled, and we noticed it again during the Great Recession several years later.  Today, with yet another set of unexpected and extreme economic challenges, Read more

Don’t Wait on Fixing Waits

Posted on in Business Advice, Healthcare Please leave a comment

Where do you hear the loudest customer complaints in the typical hospital of today? It’s the Emergency Room.

“Why have I waited so long?!” “Why did that person on the stretcher go back to a room before me?! I was here first!” “I’ve been here 2 hours, and nobody’s told me anything!”

These complaints are pervasive, but they also point to the impact of customer service. Remember that customer service involves processes. Customer service is part employee attitudes/skills/knowledge, and the other part is process. How long something takes, how long are the waits, how efficient is a process, how redundant are the processes, how smooth the flow of information and people is or isn’t – those are all characteristics of process.

And whereas businesses spend lots of money every year to have employees trained on how to deal with irate customers, a tactic just as valuable as that is to identify the root causes of why customers are irate and to address those root causes. In healthcare, so many of those complaints are about one thing – process.

So if you want your organization to be better from a customer service-perspective in your customers’ eyes, if you want to reduce the number of conflicts with customers which your employees have to address, then fix your processes. Find out where waits exist, the cause of the waits, the communications during the waits, and perceptions of the length of the wait time, and address them.

Many of our clients redesign departmental layouts, they change processes, they do a better job of scheduling staff to flex up/down with variations by time-of-day or day-of-week with customer volumes or arrival rates. They train staff on how to and how often to interact with customers during wait to provide updates, keep them engaged, convey they care, and – ultimately – to reduce the perception of the wait time. The clients create activities for the customers or distractions which help to reduce the perception of the wait times.

In other words, the hospitals and other organizations best at dealing with waits try to reduce wait times while at the same time reducing the perception of waits.

Wait times are a symptom of an issue with your customer service. Don’t wait on fixing waits.

Interested in improving your company’s customer service? See more information at: http://www.cssamerica.com/


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