Healthcare Experience Horror Story
We talk about good vs bad customer experiences. And we give examples of organizations that do things well or poorly. But we rarely are able to shine the light on a truly horrific experience. We found one in our latest healthcare experience.
Complexity is Not an Excuse for bad healthcare experience
When I was in JetBlue Airlines we had a few pretty awful stories that can only come from being in the business of travel in a space as complex as the airline industry. These events do not qualify as horror experiences because they happened as a consequence of bad circumstances. They were never designed to happen, nor were they the result of lack of empathy or care on behalf of JetBlue. In fact, we all felt bad. That is why we talked about negative customer experiences and worked to fix them.
Healthcare Experience Design Horrors
Recently, my experience with my daughter’s healthcare provider was the result of poor design; non existent or bad system interactions; and lack of processes to manage end-to-end patient experience. My experience was horrifying because I, an entrepreneur and new mom, was sent to collections as a result of a mistake.
The Invisible Patient Journey
On June 3rd, my then 7 month old baby got sick for the first time. Terrified, I decided to use the telemedicine visit her provider advertises. When the time came to turn on the app, it prompted me to pay for my visit BEFORE the doctor joined the call. I paid and forgot about it.
Since June 3rd, we have visited our pediatrician four times. After every visit, at checkout I ask if we have an outstanding balance. The answer is always no.
Last week, I returned from vacation to find a COLLECTION letter in my mailbox. The letter states we owe our pediatrician $40. When I called to ask about it, I learned that we owe money from a June 3rd visit. When I proved I paid in June, the representative said I owed money for February and, in June, the system applied my $40 payment to the February bill. So according to them, I never paid for the June 3rd visit.
In response, I paid the $40 via phone. At this point, the representative assured me the provider’s billing department will CALL the collection agency to cancel that claim.
No apology. No acknowledgement of any wrongdoing by the provider. And no email confirmation that I paid and now have a zero balance.
Today, I went to my online portal and saw the annoying “No Name on File” welcome message. Then I found out I now owe them $80!!
Simple Solutions Nobody Cares to Implement
Let’s talk fixes. I never complain without offering a solution. Weill Cornell, if you read this, apply these very simple fixes that won’t break the bank:
- Implement a Data Council that can clean up your data and ensure you have names of each account for the patient digital experience. Stop using bad data. “No name on File” is not how make you make a connection with your patients.
- Integrate your telemedicine solution with your physical practice. Even if it is expensive to fully integrate the systems, find a way to make those experiences unified and on brand. There is no excuse for the checkout personnel in the doctor’s office not to see outstanding balances for televisits. If that is too expensive to do, at the very least, make sure the patient knows that the telemedicine is a separate organization.
- Invest in a mobile notifications solution and tell your patients when they owe you money. Do not let them go to collection over $40!
- Emails – send confirmation emails every time there is a payment. And include a summary of the outstanding balance, if there is one.
- Tweak the algorithm to know that an 11 month old baby should not be the one receiving communications.
- Train your billing team on hospitality. Likely, billing is the team that gets the most calls. The greeting: “What is your account number?” indicates you train people NOT to practice hospitality.
How the Healthcare Experience Should Work (a few ideas to get you started)
Front desk staff should have access to a dashboard that is updated hourly and shows my appointments and my baby’s appointments (physical and digital). Additionally, the front desk should be able to remind us about and collect payment for any service that we might have used, regardless of the internal complex relationship among vendors.
A personalized welcome message that says something warm like “Welcome Back, Ms. Petrova!” (vs. today’s “No Patient Name on File”) goes a long way to creating a positive customer experience.
The account hierarchy needs to make sense. I should be able to see and I should be prompted to open messages that pertain to my daughter’s health. In contrast, under the current design, my daughter’s account and mine are the same level. And when I swap them, I can see Cornell has sent my newborn daughter follow-ups and other messages that she clearly cannot read herself!
Representatives should engage with callers and ask them something else before they engage in the necessary transaction. They should have a dashboard in front of them that includes information about us, including my daughter’s history of appointments, medications, etc.
Personalized emails should be sent every time I incur a new balance. In addition, once a month, we should get a statement that itemizes the transactions for the month and gives a summary of what we owe. I should have received an email confirmation that the letter I received from the credit bureau is no longer in effect so I do not worry about my credit score. Email (or text message) reminders of appointments would be nice.
Other providers already have done this. Finally, remember to send a feedback survey about my experience in a digital form. This reinforces to me that you care about my experience and provides you with the information you need to improve future patient experiences.
How to talk to your CFO about customer experience and revenue growth
Last month we introduced the topic of Customer Experience ROI and the complexity of building a good business case for it. The Customer Experience business case is strong, but not easy to prove. Today we will focus on two big wins of a successful customer experience investment – revenue and customer growth of your business.
Customer Experience Audit: Cadillac Scores Millennial Customers with Future-Forward Thinking
Editor’s Note: This post is part of a Customer Experience Audit series. See all the audit stories. The automotive industry is right next to the airline industry in terms of…
Lessons Learned at the Forrester Conference: “Data is the New Sexy”
Once a year I look for an event to attend where I can learn something new and get better at what I do. This year, I attended an event hosted…
Employee Engagement and Wellness In The Workplace: Guest Post
Today, The Petrova Experience brings you a guest article about employee engagement, by Natlie DeVito of Commonwealth Joe. Commonwealth Joe is an innovative company, new to the New York City…
Why You Need Culture Not Call Center Training for Customer-Centric CX
If the organization does not understand what customer experience is, you will not get the funding or organizational support you need to build customer-centric experiences.
Why Customer Retention is the True Measure of SaaS Success
Guest Post by Callie Reynolds for The Petrova Experience In SaaS (Software as a Service), like in most businesses, sales is king. Sales gets the glory, and while I’d like…
Autonomous Customers, Traveler Privacy and More Questions for CX Professionals in a Changing World
“As we move toward a more automated culture, most travelers will adapt to a Jetsonian, automated lifestyle. Every industry we know will be disrupted. For those of us in aviation,…
Liliana Petrova Talks Patient Experience in Healthcare Podcast
Recently, we recorded a podcast on patient experience in healthcare with Stacey Richter. And today, we are excited to share it with you. Patient Experience in Healthcare vs Passenger Experience…
Customer Experience Design – How Do You Want Customers To Feel?
Last week, we talked about CX Design in terms of space and function. Today, we continue our CX design journey to talk about the design of emotions and feelings. The new…
Customer Experience, Self Service, and the Gift of Time
Time is the most precious gift in life. If you think about it, time is the one thing we all want more of. As we get older and busier, time gets even more valuable to us.
Aviation Industry, Coronavirus Isn’t the Only Thing Killing Us
Eighteen years ago, September 11th caused a three-day halt of the US commercial airlines and resulted in a 31.6% reduction in travel in September 2001 compared to the previous year….
Are You Ready to Go Exclusive with Jane, Your Digital Concierge?
In 2015 JetBlue introduced bag fees. Seven years after the competition. The media exploded. Many publications were negative. They blamed the airline for “selling out.” One headline read “A New…
Patient Experience Whitepaper: Impact of Patient ‘I Wants’ in Healthcare
Rachel Dreyfus joins The Petrova Experience with a guest blog about patient experience. Background A culture of positive patient experience is increasingly important in Healthcare, affecting patient outcomes and satisfaction….
How to Extend Your Travel Experience Value Proposition
Last December the Ladders published that discusses business travelers who extend travel beyond the timeline of the business trip. The article says, “[a]ccording to a new study by La Quinta by…
Organizational Culture and Access to Information
By and large, people perceive culture as an HR discipline. The most common perception is that culture covers the soft side of performance. Culture is about how you do things, not so much about what you do. This approach to culture could not be more wrong. In fact, organizational culture is about so much more than a few words in a performance review sheet. It is about leaders expressing values, and the action guidance their cultural behaviors provide.
Customer Experience Audit: eBay’s Vibrant Marketplace of the Future
Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series of Customer Experience Audits. See all audit stories. Two years ago RJ Pittman and eBay made a big bet and made…
CX Design Makes Form and Function Beautiful – and Cosmopolitan Magazine Notices
At its core, design is about value creation. In the world of Customer Experience, value-driven design requires CX professionals to use empathy to imagine a future customer experience that is…
Get Customer Experience Basics Right and You Don’t Need to Invest in Wow Moments
Wow Moments are a Customer Experience hot topic. Customer experience professionals ideate how to build, prioritize, finance, and measure these Wow Moments. Chip and Dan Heath wrote a whole book on the topic: The Power of Moments. No Wow Moment saves you from negative word of mouth if your brand fails to get the customer experience basics right or to deliver the expected brand experience consistently.
Why you need a defined culture for customer experience?
When designed and built correctly, customer experience expresses an organization’s brand. Your brand and marketing promises serve as a guiding light to your experience team. Similarly, organizational culture serves as a goalpost for the service side of customer experience.
Create Your Tribe: How Great CX Makes a Lifestyle Brand
Newcomers to the market realize that their business is only as strong as the growth of their customer base. With that in mind, senior leaders work hard to shorten the distance between them and the customer.
What is Customer Experience? What are the Faces of CX?
Each area of CX represents a path for CX professionals to impact business health and build successful careers. One of my favorite CX analogies is that it is like the blood in our bodies. When CX is done well, it touches every aspect of an organization. That’s what makes customer experience so much fun! You will never be bored working in CX.
Culture Is King – The Power Of Employee Engagement
In 2017 we introduced our ROI series recognizing the challenges all customer experience professionals have to obtain funding for CX initiatives and to prove their positive returns. Our second ROI…
What is Telemedicine? Keeping Medicine at the Heart
Guest Post by Dr. Melynda Barnes for The Petrova Experience. In this post Dr. Barnes answers the question “what is telemedicine,” and reminds us to keep medicine at the heart…
From Pain Points to Magical Moments: Transform the Customer Experience
Argyle Journal interviewed Liliana Petrova about emerging self service technology and meeting and exceeding customer expectations in airports. In the below recording Liliana explains how JetBlue addresses the pain points…
Customer Experience Design – Make the Customer Know Who You Are
Now that we have helped you become experts in the design of space and function and the design of feelings, it is time to turn our attention to aesthetics, and to connect customer experience…
United CEO does not care about #customers happiness. Really?
Lately, I have been thinking about United Airlines. In the beginning I thought about them because someone asked whether it is possible to build a customer-centric culture in a company…
Customer Experience Audit: Domino’s Making the Right CX Choices
Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series of Customer Experience Audit – as series of articles featuring examples of good customer experience and bad customer experience in practice….
Poor Integration is Bad for Customer Journey and Worse for Brands
Although we all have bad customer experiences, there is still a big debate about “the CX field” and whether it will survive the test of time. There is no doubt…
Let’s Get You Certified as a Customer Experience Professional!
Like all mature professions, customer experience has a certification that is internationally recognized. Adding it to your resume will signal to the business community that you are serious about customer experience and your aspiration to be part of its leadership ranks…
Would You Pitch In To Save Toys “R” Us For Your Children To Experience? #ToysRUsGoFundMe
Last week we laid out the big moves that the leadership of Toys ‘R’ Us failed to take to evolve with customer needs and thus joins other brands as examples of…
Customer Experience Tips and Best Practices In 2017?
In Post 2 of Liliana Petrova’s series on customer experience tips, lessons learned, and best practices for the new year on JetBlue, she explores the importance of “keeping the human…
What is the survey question that will prioritize your #CX roadmap?
As customer experience professionals, we need to factor in this disconnect when we design surveys. And when we react to survey results. Customers have an image of who they want to be. However, their behaviors do not always reflect that image.
3 Ways to Create a Better Employee Experience Strategy
Guest Post by Gabe Smith, CCXP for The Petrova Experience The relationship between employee experience strategy and customer experience has long been discussed. Without engaged employees, we’re told, it’s difficult…
WeWork Does CX Right with a Wow Moment
Used at the right time and place along the customer’s journey, the Wow Moment is an excellent retention technique. When a brand creates personal, relevant experience at exactly the right time, it can build a lifelong, loyal customer relationship.
CX Skills Builders: You May Have a CX Job and Not Know It
Last week we talked about the identity crisis of CX professionals and we urged you to fix any small problem or seam on the customer journey in order to build internal brand equity and buy in.
Airport Experience: Are You Letting Down Your Precious Travelers?
A month and a half ago, as part of our ongoing conversation about airport experience, we introduced the concept of revenge travel. We pleaded with the public to trust us…
How To Define Your Purpose And Have Unique Culture
If you Google the word “purpose” you get the definition “the reason for which something exists.” This is a challenge if you think about it in the context of an…
Hiring Tips: Who Should I Hire First on My CX Team
The pressure to demonstrate business impact and ROI on your Customer Experience initiatives quickly makes your first hire even more important. As usual, there is no answer that fits all scenarios perfectly. We have some helpful strategies to consider based on the structure of your organization and your goals.
How to Prepare for AI: Dispatches from CR Summit, Charleston
On the eve of the #CRSummit in Charleston, customer experience leaders from various industries held the first AI Committee meeting. AI is a challenging topic to cover because it has…
Human Experience: Do You Really Know Your Customers?
Steve Jobs said: “Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need before they realize it themselves.” He did not just say that….
Customer Experience Technology View of your Call Center
By 2022 the global cloud based contact center market is growing from USD 6.8Bn in 2017 to 20.93Bn in 2022. This makes for CAGR of 25.2%. If you do not…
The One CX Goal You Need to Set for 2019
For 2019, I urge you to make only one CX goal – bring about business success with your customer experience work. Don’t just do work in the general sense. Rather, set a CX goal that has a real impact on your customers and their experiences with your brand.
Customer Experience Audit: Starbucks Bets On The Physical Experience
Starbucks is opting in for the physical experience in order to become a lifestyle brand while other brands are investing in omni-channel experience.
Our Holiday Wishes for Great CX
Every successful customer experience initiative starts with a skilled CX team. Brush up on your CX skills to strengthen the business case for CX; to develop relationships within your organization; and to deliver standout customer experiences in the new year.
Leadership During the Pandemic: Guest Post by Rachel Dreyfus
This is a guest post by Rachel Dreyfus, President, Dreyfus Advisors, who researched leadership during the pandemic. How has Covid19 influenced leadership over the past three months? Research results show…
Customer Experience Audit: Uber Bets On Self-Driving Cars With Big Volvo Purchase
The question that remains unanswered is who will be part of the future of transportation. Uber is going for the vertical integration – the whole pie. The future industry of urban transportation will be made of players in three different categories: cars, self-driving software, and ride-sharing network. In contrast, Lyft approaches the future through partnerships.