Customer experience (also known as patient experience in the healthcare world) is crucial to the overall growth and profitability of your practice.
According to AHRQ, patient experience encompasses the range of interactions that patients have with the healthcare system, including their care from health plans, and from doctors, nurses, and staff in hospitals, physician practices, and other health care facilities.
And although many things can impact the patient experience at your practice, research shows that the most influential element to improve your PX is the employee experience.
This is why we believe that sustainable growth happens at the intersection of culture, brand, and experience – and that’s what we’re going to be talking to you about today.
How can patient experience drive business growth?
We’ve talked about this at length on our sister brand before, but in short – a good patient experience leads to happy and return patients, which in turn leads to revenue and growth.
If you think about it: patient experience and loyalty are tightly connected. If you feel super well-cared-for at a particular practice, you’ll be more likely to come back to it next time, instead of going to a different practice in your area, right?
While this may sound like a simple fix (just be nice to your patients and they’ll come back time and time again), don’t be fooled. It does take time, strategic planning, and teamwork – hence why a lot of practices resort to focusing on other areas such as marketing to drive growth.
And while we’re not saying marketing isn’t worth it, and that you shouldn’t market your practice, we all know how new patient acquisition (aka marketing) is much more expensive than patient retention.
Savings opportunity: by providing your current patients with a great experience at your practice, you’ll be decreasing patient churn, saving money, and increasing your profit margins (all while making your patients happier!)
But how are patient and employee experience related?
This isn’t rocket science – happy employees simply perform better at their job, therefore leaving patients happier with the care they receive.
Imagine having a cranky employee answering the phone or – even worse – at your reception desk. We’re sure you can picture how that would lead to a not-so-great patient experience, right?
This is especially important to be mindful of when it comes to healthcare, as your patients are often at their most vulnerable state when reaching out for help. You want your team to be aware of that, and your strategy to reflect the best ways to deal with the different types of sensitive situations you may encounter.
Not only that, you should work on perfecting your employee experience program, in order to see a ripple effect across your patient experience AND the overall growth of your practice!
Bonus savings: this will not only rub off on all the different areas of your practice, but it’ll also increase employee retention, which can save you up to 6-9 months of their salary, on average.
So, how can we improve patient experience?
It’s simple: make it a priority! It’s easy to read this and go like “yeah, that makes sense, we just need to improve our employee experience and it will all be fine”, but where many fail to do this is they don’t prioritize this action, so it ends up getting lost in the day to day priorities that come up.
In fact, a recent McKinsey and Co. study revealed that 48% of leaders do not spend their time on the company’s most important strategic priorities.
This study goes on to suggest that to solve this reality we need to address problems systematically vs. just assigning them to an individual.
This means you should work with your team to come up with a systematic approach that attaches your priorities to actual data and then aligns your organizational resources for change. This takes time, prioritization – and teamwork – and shouldn’t be just another item on someone’s to-do list for the month (or even worse, for the quarter).
(See the 4 key questions to ask when developinc a Patient Experience program for your healthcare business)
If you’re not yet convinced of the potential of this approach – our client Growing Independent Eaters saw a 200-300% YOY revenue increase just from aligning their message, the service delivery model, the value and benefits of their program, and setting up a system that maximizes clinician time on the patients they serve, all with our help.
So, let us ask you – are you ready to see your people, your patients, and your business thrive? If so, we’d love to connect and explore your priorities. Get on our calendar for a no-pressure exploration call today.