phone coverage

Costly (and easily correctable) telephone mistakes

All of us by now have had the feeling of being held captive by a merciless phone tree or being asked, "Can you please hold?" before being left in limbo for five, ten or even fifteen minutes or more.  Like you, patients don't like having their time wasted when calling your practice. Nonetheless,  many practices have taken high demand and technological developments as an excuse for failing to review and refine the systems they have in place for serving their patients over the phone.  If you've recently reviewed your online presence and encountered a negative review, you can appreciate how important it is to establish with your patients a sense that you are dedicated to taking good care of them regardless of whether they are in or out of the exam room. Improving patient phone service needn't be an overwhelming chore for your all-ready busy office. In fact, this process is ideally suited for working on around your schedule as there are many components that can be improved in fifteen minute blocks. Most modern telephone systems have impressive reporting capabilities, despite the fact that most practice staff usually know nothing about them. Make it a priority to generate reports that can serve as benchmarks for your practice's performance in this area. How long do callers wait on hold? How many calls come in relative to your patient visits? When are calls coming in? One very common problem is the rush of calls that often occurs as the practice opens up after the lunch hour. As the lunch hour is the most convenient times for many of your patients to call, the simple fact is that you should have telephone coverage over lunch.  Rotating this assignment through your staff is easy to implement -- you'll get more new patient bookings and smooth the flow of calls, meaning happier patients and staff. You should have a current diagram of your phone tree that illustrates that patients can find their way through the tree in a timely manner.  Consulting with your systems reports, eliminate branches of the tree that are infrequently accessed. You've

By |2022-01-01T22:52:39-08:00May 10th, 2012|

The Lunch Hour Debacle

If you shut down the phones during the lunch hour you are on the fast track to losing potential new patients and aggravating existing ones. It also results in greater phone traffic when the lines open up again, resulting in chaos.Other service industries would never dream of closing down their phones at lunch. Why? Because being available opens the door to serve their customers better and to gain new business. If you lose 2 new patients a week it could cost you more than $36,000 in lost revenue a year. Employees can stagger their lunches to give you telephone coverage. So stop the lunch hour debacle!Judy Capko is one of America's leading practice management and marketing consultants and author of the runaway top-selling book Secrets of the Best-Run Practices now in its second edition. Check it out by clicking on the book icon at www.capko.com

By |2011-03-13T12:22:56-08:00May 29th, 2010|
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