Every healthcare vendor I have ever spoken with always insists they value customer feedback. Of course, then I find out they don’t ever ask for it. Or I find out they have a system in place ostensibly to collect customer feedback – yet the system itself prevents any real information from being collected. Either way, you risk losing business by missing a chance to help a customer in need.

Avoid Last Interactions Only

It is very common for feedback platforms to ask for details about your “last interaction” only. The problem with this is when the last person you spoke with was as helpful as the company allows them to be, yet your issue is still unresolved.

In healthcare, people are often dealing with complex patient needs and ongoing situations. If they are having a problem, it is unlikely to be only about the last contact. What is far more likely is that they have been going back and forth with your support team for weeks and getting nowhere.

If you are truly interested in hearing how well you are serving your customers, then you cannot limit all your questions to the last interaction. In fact, I wouldn’t even lead with it. Read on to find out what you should lead with instead.

Ask Outright

One of the more frustrating parts of customer feedback tech is when it only asks an open-ended question at the very end. This forces someone experiencing a complicated problem to have to click through a number of potentially meaningless questions before being able to tell you the problem.

Why frustrate a customer who is already upset? Instead, ask immediately if they are having a problem with a product, customer service, or a company-wide policy or system. If it’s a product, you can get them rerouted to tech support immediately. If it’s customer service, then you can ask them about interactions with your employees. But if the problem is systemic, then you have just opened the door to important information that a “last interaction only” approach might have missed.

Use a Human

Algorithms cannot provide real customer service. Even if you are using AI, you still need a human being overlooking the summarized data. Even better, make sure they periodically review items that were NOT flagged, just to be sure important information is not being systematically ignored.

A human helps maintain a balance point with your technology. Too much automation, you come across as uncaring. So little automation that you can’t keep up, you also come across as uncaring. Having a person run their eyes over the data regularly can help ensure your customers feel taken care of.

Customer Feedback

Customer feedback needs to be handled delicately. If the information you ask for is too narrow, you might not be told the whole story. If the information you ask for is too detailed and cumbersome, people may also click away without sharing the whole story. Either way, you can wind up baffled by unhappy customers and lost business. By asking about all interactions, clarifying the problem area upfront, and having a person keep a close watch on the technology, you can ensure you are on top of all the customer feedback you receive.

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash