Tips to Boost Customer Satisfaction at Your Optometry Practice
Patients aren’t just patients. They’re customers of your optometry practice.
If they’re not satisfied with the services and goods you’re providing, they might take their eye treatment and eyewear needs elsewhere. If they’re really not satisfied, they might share their opinions and convince others not to visit.
By keeping your customers satisfied, you’ll be helping them (and you).
Create a clean, welcoming environment
Appearances matter, even in optometry offices.
Your office should look (and smell) clean because it is clean. It’s a medical practice, after all. Cleanliness will reassure patients that your office is sanitary, that it’s doing all it needs to do to keep them healthy and safe.
Little touches also go a long way. Offer patients water. People get thirsty, and water is also good for their eyes. It stimulates tear production and prevents dry eyes.
If your patients are hydrating, you could praise them for doing that and for making other healthy choices. You could use the opportunity to discuss how consuming the right food and drinks and making other health-conscious choices could improve their vision.
Providing an inviting environment could also provide a warm welcome. Include welcoming seating in the waiting area as well as places to charge patients’ electronic devices. Such touches offer coziness and convenience, creating an atmosphere that’s more homelike and cozier than sterile and impersonal.
Your optometry office doesn’t need to look like a luxurious spa. But keeping the office decor inviting, attractive, and up to date could show patients that your medical expertise is also staying current with the times.
Keep track of records and other information
Staying abreast of current developments also extends to your patients’ medical records.
There’s a good chance you use electronic health records and software to manage your practice. If you’ve been working a while, your practice might even have paper charts.
No matter the format, then, your office has a lot of medical records and other information. To corral this information, consider investing in a current EHR system. This software could help you keep on top of patient records and other data and allow you and patients to access it quickly and easily.
Do you have older records and other legacy data from your practice? Store them securely.
For electronic files, you could use a remote dedicated server. This means that your office could store your information off-site in a server all its own, so you won’t have to worry about viruses and other malware from other users. Or you could keep your data in the cloud (on the internet) for another remote storage option.
When you send electronic files, you can encrypt them, which involves translating them into incomprehensive strings of letters and numbers. People who want to translate this information will need tools known as keys that only you will provide.
Paper files also need attention. To secure them safely, you could keep them in locked cabinets at your office or off-site. Only your most trusted employees should have the keys or other access tools to such files.
Track billing information and provide assistance
It’s also important to create and track accurate billing information.
Many insurance companies penalize medical offices if they submit claims incorrectly. They might ask for more information, which could delay payment. They might reject claims entirely, which could prevent any sort of financial compensation or lead to a lengthy appeals process.
Integrating your optometry office’s EHR software with its practice management systems could prevent such errors. You’ll find accurate, updated medical information on EHR software. This accuracy could help you correctly complete forms and create clear, comprehensive bills to send to your patients.
But if the bills still aren’t clear, your practice should make efforts to explain them. Hire someone on your staff who is talented in technical matters and train them on your systems.
This expertise could help many. For one, these tech-savvy employees could become superusers, which means they could train and assist fellow employees.
Knowledgeable staff members could also guide patients who are new to your office’s technology and be on hand to answer any questions. Patients will be reassured that you’re available to help with their technical needs as well as their medical ones.
In fact, hiring different types of experts could improve your practice and your patients’ satisfaction with it.
Do you know office managers who manage optometric practices and make it look effortless? Opticians who offer personalized customer service while managing to always make the sale? Consider hiring such professionals.
They might require higher salaries. But consider their paychecks an investment in the future.
Efficient office managers may create streamlined processes that save time and eliminate extra work. With this time, you might be able to see additional patients or complete other tasks.
Opticians who are good at sales will convince patients to become eyewear-buying customers. They’ll generate additional revenue for your office, and their customers might recommend your practice to others, which could further boost sales and patient volume.
Shorten waiting times
More patients could mean more potential problems, though.
A popular practice might mean patients could be waiting longer during in-office visits. If their waiting times are too long, they may become discouraged and consider going elsewhere.
Hiring could prevent this. Again, more people could cost more money at first, but if additional employees are available to assist and process patients, people might face shorter waiting times and view your practice more favorably. If they view your practice positively, they’re more likely to stay and even mention you to others.
Technology could also help you reduce these times. You could ask people to join online patient portals so they could add updates and submit questions. Before they arrive for their appointments, you could ask them to complete insurance-related forms using their phones, computers, or other devices.
Sharing information before and after visits means patients could spend their appointments addressing other matters and working with you to resolve them.
If you need help resolving your own matters, contact Eye Care Leaders. We’ll help you develop technological tools and professional solutions that could provide many forms of assistance.
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