How Healthcare Organizations Can Improve their Net Promoter Score

May 28, 2019

It’s undeniable that delivering a positive customer experience is key to building a strong brand and maintaining customer loyalty. However, the importance of customer experience in healthcare is magnified significantly due to the personal nature of the services and interactions. Delivering an exceptional experience beyond medical care is among the most important measures a healthcare organization can take to ensure brand loyalty.

Many companies rely on the Net Promoter Score (NPS) to measure overall customer satisfaction. It’s a useful metric that can offer valuable insight into the total customer experience delivered. 

A Bain analysis shows that companies that provide ongoing value and achieve long-term growth have NPS scores two times higher than the average company. And companies with top scores grow at more than twice the rate of competitors, on average.

However, NPS presents a unique set of challenges relative to the healthcare industry due to the many interconnected variables that contribute to the overall patient experience. From care to insurance coverage, to communications and billing, each touchpoint along the customer journey contributes to their overall experience and level of satisfaction.

Understanding NPS

Before we dig deeper, let’s understand the NPS score and how it is determined. Ultimately, NPS is a measure of the efficiency and effectiveness of an organization in delivering a rewarding customer experience. The metric indicates the loyalty that exists between your company and its customers. A positive NPS indicates that you have more advocates (or promoters) willing to recommend you than critics (or detractors). Further, NPS can be a valid indicator of the financial performance of a company since it considers the likelihood of receiving a favorable recommendation from the respondent. An NPS trending positive indicates positive financial results, and vice versa.

Consider the Entire Customer Journey

The personalization and ease-of-use delivered by beloved brands like Apple and Netflix have paved the way and shaped the expectation of today’s consumers, regardless of industry. Consumers expect convenience, hassle-free experiences that are tailored according to their personal preferences.

Personas can serve as critical tools in understanding the unique expectations of the healthcare member, and where opportunities exist to delight them along their journey. It’s looking beyond demographics and recognizing their unique wants and needs, expectations and motivations. Organizations that are willing to rethink their operations to deliver tailored and rewarding customer experiences will thrive. Those that continue to do business as usual will be forgotten.

Start at the Start

When planning your healthcare member journey, consider each and every touchpoint at which they interact with your organization, online and offline.

Among the most common areas of frustration in healthcare is the benefits enrollment process. Customers overwhelmingly find it to be antiquated, cumbersome and confusing, which negatively impacts the relationship between the provider and the insured, jeopardizing the NPS.

O’Neil Digital Solutions set out to rethink the entire enrollment process by enabling their healthcare clients the flexibility to create, manage and order enrollment materials for new and existing customers. ONEkit™, the new enrollment kit solution, was created with the goal of helping sales representatives for the healthcare clients improve the sales experience for potential members and also to strengthen their relationships with existing members, by improving communication through customized messaging and simple to use enrollment kits. This approach ultimately eliminates static and non-relevant content within the enrollment materials. The O’Neil ONEkit solution also reduces cost and obsolescence by producing more personalized and  timely content on demand.

Rather than independent, loose print collateral and separate mailings in a folder, brokers, agents and sales representatives can now provide new and existing members with “all-in-one” bound personalized booklets, all produced on demand. This innovation does not increase pricing for the healthcare clients, and radically improves the customer experience, enabling clients to gain a higher level of member satisfaction, which begins the journey with a positive experience.

Build Better Member Relationships

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a useful tool in helping build a deeper understanding of your members and what they value. But to get members to participate and share their insight you must first establish trust and a solid relationship with them. One of the most effective means to bridge the gap is to personalize your communications so members don't feel as though they are merely a number, but a valued customer. Just as big brands deliver highly personalized communications and brand experiences, the same will be expected of healthcare members.