Service Recovery is Essential to Your Organization’s Survival

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The Power of Service Recovery

If your healthcare organization subscribes to M3-Patient Experience®, you and your team have perhaps the most powerful service recovery tool available on the market today. One of our largest physician groups recently had this to say.

“The service recovery feature that MedicalGPS has developed as part of M3-Patient Experience allows our practice managers to reach out to patients in near-real time, immediately after the visit, whenever a service failure occurs. I have never seen, or do I know of a system available on the market today that even comes close to M3-Patient Experience.”

Errors Are Inevitable, Dissatisfied Customers are Not

In today’s consumer-driven healthcare environment, performing service recovery is not only critical to compliance and outcomes, I would argue it is THE key factor in building stronger, heather relationships with patients, allowing your organization to move from just surviving to thriving.

When patients are willing to invest their time and energy to tell you that their expectations were not met, reaching out to the patient with a quick phone call, personal email, or even a timely text message will restore consumer confidence and create patient loyalty.

According to the Harvard Business review article titled, “The Profitable Art of Service Recovery”, by Christopher W. Hart , James L. Heskett and W. Earl Sasser, Jr., we find the following.

“Mistakes are a critical part of every service. Hard as they try, even the best service companies can’t prevent the occasional late flight, burned steak, or missed delivery. The fact is, in services, often performed in the customer’s presence, errors are inevitable.

But dissatisfied customers are not. [Underline and bolding mine for emphasis] While companies may not be able to prevent all problems, they can learn to recover from them. A good recovery can turn angry, frustrated customers into loyal ones. It can, in fact, create more goodwill than if things had gone smoothly in the first place.”

Not Performing Service Recovery?

The inability (or unwillingness) to perform service recovery can lead to significant legal exposure, especially for medical practices and healthcare organizations according to one American Medical News article.

As medical reimbursement is more closely tied to quality and outcomes, service recovery is essential. Overlooking, or taking a casual attitude toward service recovery will cost medical practices and healthcare organizations significantly.

Angry to Loyal in Four Steps

In the Forbes article, “4 Steps From Customer Anger To Customer Loyalty: The Expert Customer Service Recovery Method”, by Micah Solomon, there are four basic steps to take a customer/patient from angry to loyal.

1) Apologize
2) Review
3) Fix
4) Document

As part of MedicalGPS’ basic training for all medical practices deploying M3-Patient Experience, performing service recovery is taught right up front as part of the core curriculum for all front-line managers.
Because M3-Patient Experience allows for a continuous flow of patient feedback, on a daily basis in real-time, up to 100% of your patients have an opportunity to provide feedback. (1) As a front-line manager you and your team have the ability to hear from and take care of every potentially dissatisfied patient.

“Done well, service recovery can shore up your brand and build trust with customers. They see that your service policy isn’t just a bunch of words posted at the front of the store. It’s a living, breathing process that all of the company’s employees take seriously.” (2) — Quint Studer

Please let us know if you have comments or questions, and subscribe to our Email Updates, so that you can be assured to receive Thinking Thursdays TIPs.

Thank you!

Jerry L. Stone
MedicalGPS, LLC.

(1) Note: Some healthcare organizations intentionally limit the frequency of patient feedback solicitation
(2) “How service recovery can turn dissatisfied customers into raving fans”, by Quint Studer, to the Pensacola News Journal, published July 4, 2020 7:00 AM CDT

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