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Patient Satisfaction – a key focus in healthcare

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George Alex, Chief Marketing Officer, Jaslok Hospital shares with CSAT360 about customer focus in healthcare.

georgealexjaslokhospital

Briefly tell us how customer focus is central to your business

We are in the business of healthcare and a healthcare service delivery organisation has to be very careful in identifying who is their customer, most healthcare brands confuse patient’s satisfaction only as customer satisfaction. This is not the case; customer satisfaction does not only mean patients satisfaction as the real customer in today’s scenario is not only the patients but the companion, relatives and friends who come to visit them. Customer satisfaction is of utmost importance to our business as healthcare is still more of word of mouth which still drives brand saliency and customer base.

How has SMAC / digitization impacted the way you and your customers interact.

SMAC is has not been able to penetrate deep into the healthcare sector, healthcare brands are still fence sitters who have not invested heavily into SMAC, but its surely the future and brands like ours are very keen to invest in this space which will give us real time customer interaction opportunity both ways and will help us improvise and custom make services for the benefit of the customers.

How are you dealing with this change in customer behaviour?

Customer is the king and should always be treated like the same. Healthcare service delivery organisation has always wanted to improvise and adapt to the changing needs of the customer. Customer expectation has been growing by the day and rightfully so. I compare our business to the hospitality business where a guest check in to 5 Star hotel spends stay for 3-4 nights and pays a bill of 40-50K and similarly a patients who come to the hospital for a procedure /services pays 3-4 lakhs so he /she deserves to be given a superlative experience. Our endeavour in this industry is drive change to improve the experience of the customer and we are prepared for the same.

How are you capturing customer expectations and feedback today?

We have a customer feedback form which captures details on the customer experience at various stages of his stay with the hospital both qualitative and quantitative feedback are captured to help us improve upon on our services and its fed in the system for training of our staff .

What support do you look for easing the challenges towards meeting customer expectations?

I think the only support required is bringing in automation and IT systems which will help give feedback real time which will help us with doing the troubleshooting while the customer is in the hospital and second help us do damage control and help serve the customer.

Your suggestions for marketing professionals in other organizations.

Marketing is the custodian of the brand , branding activity does not only mean building brand by running successful campaigns, Customer advocacy being the top of the pyramid in marketing any brand. It is imperative that customer experience should be an integral part of the marketing KPI and marketing should be responsible to drive the customer satisfaction initiative in any organisation. Its worth the investment to spend marketing monies on CSAT initiatives as it will help retain the customer base which is now becoming a very important aspect with the mushrooming of healthcare centres.

Do you have any recommendation for top management of Organizations to improve customer focus

My Suggestion to Top management is that CSAT should be vertical of business reporting to the CMO department and KPI on CSAT should be tracked on a weekly basis and enough investments should be made in this field by bringing in technology which will build in capability to provide seamless and consistent service to customer and grow their Customer base.

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