By Andrew Wyatt, COO, Lumeon
FY2018 is just around the corner, so you’re likely to be focused on your plans for the upcoming year. Have you thought about your technology and how it can help you achieve your strategic goals?
As you start to plan for the next year, I’ve put together a checklist exploring where technology can help.
1. Increase your portfolio of self-pay packaged products
With the self-pay market set to grow at over 3% per annum, many private providers are looking to increase the number of packaged products available to this lucrative segment. However, each product requires its own care pathway and, as the number of pathways increase, so does the potential for waste and inefficiencies due to manual processes.
These inefficiencies can easily wipe-out any potential profits, so providers should look at technology that automates the care pathway. By removing the risk from manual processes, organizations can enable the efficient delivery of their packaged products.
2. Create a compelling customer journey
Lumeon recently commissioned a mystery shopping research project into the workings of the UK self-pay market. What we found was that although many providers market a clear self-pay proposition on their website, once calls are made to an inquiry line, staff were unaware how to direct them. This resulted in our enquirers speaking to several people to get answers, or kept on hold for long periods of time. There were also lucrative upsell opportunities that were missed (e.g. of private GP services).
Technology can create a more compelling customer journey by deploying system-driven processes that direct staff through every stage of a specific self-pay pathway. Automating these pathways allows you to rapidly coordinate the right staff and resources to deliver a consistent patient experience within your SLAs. It also means you can bring new products to market much more quickly. This becomes even more important to maintain a competitive edge. Self-pay patients are on the look-out for competitively priced ‘packaged’ procedures with tiered ‘gold, silver and bronze’ options, so these processes are critical as you start to release new, more complex products aimed at this market.
3. Boost your brand with positive outcome data
As it becomes increasingly important to demonstrate value-based versus volume-based care, more providers are publishing outcomes data and patient satisfaction scores across their marketing channels and information provided to GPs.
To do this, you need a clear, consistent way of tracking and visualizing outcomes data across every site and practitioner. Technology can help to collate and consolidate patient feedback on how they think they are progressing towards their personal goals, as well as outline objective outcomes indicators, by automatically prompting patients to share data via app or web-portal.
You might also want to use automation as a back-stop to ensure patient satisfaction scores are always collated, so you can review and rapidly publish to Trustpilot.
An increasing number of our clients are using Care Pathway Manager’s customer engagement modules to help them embed automation into customer retention strategies. Customers are profiled and communication is automated into a co-ordinated series of activities aimed at building brand loyalty, promoting wellbeing and generating revenue. These range from reminding patients about annual check-ups to upselling health assessment upgrades, cross-selling additional products (e.g. private GP or travel clinic services), or offering friend and family discounts. Automated contact can take place in the form of transferring patients into a call list, sending branded emails, letters or notifying them via our app.
Through this, customers are able to create a compelling customer journey and, in turn, build their brand credibility within the market.