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When running a business, particularly a consumer-facing one, your company’s online reputation is everything. In today’s always-on, ever-connected world, this is more true than ever. The proliferation of online services reviewing everything from dog walkers to restaurants to hospitals has made it easier than ever for your customers to let the world know what they think of your medical practice. But what’s involved in urgent care reputation management and how can you make sure you’re doing everything you can to improve it?

Here are five ways to optimize your processes to increase your reviews and your online rating.

1. Improve the patient experience with patient engagement

It sounds obvious, but a patient’s experience is the single biggest driver of your urgent care center reputation, both online and off. Of course your staff strives to provide incredible patient-centered care, but what can you do about things like a long wait that can tarnish the patient experience before they even set foot in the door?

This is where patient engagement tools come to the rescue. They provide you amenities like online scheduling, pre-registration, and smart queues — that help level-set wait time expectations, and also cut down wait times by letting patients arrive at the clinic when you can see them, and giving staff visibility to optimize throughput.

Patient engagement tools also help you connect with patients after the visit. Post-visit surveys open the door to feedback, and they can also prompt patients to write an online review. The more positive reviews you can earn, the more insulation you have against the inevitable negative ones.

Learn more about strategies and benefits related to patient engagement here >>

2. Use reputation management software

Speaking of software that lets you collect feedback from patients, now there is technology that lets you manage your Google reviews right from your patient engagement system. Here is what some features in a reputation management system look like:

  • Survey feedback is scanned to generate team scorecards and engagement metrics that show providers a snapshot of their NPS relative to other providers in the organization, as well as verbatim comments related to their visits.
  • AI-powered ticketing system scans feedback and automatically opens tickets and assigns to specific clinic managers for follow-up (specifically for complaints.)
  • Dashboards let you see and manage Google reviews from inside your system – so you can sort Google reviews by your chosen metric, and also reply or leave comments as needed, all in one place. You can also compare your clinic against up to three competitors’ star ratings.
  • Provider-specific reporting of net promoter scores – post-visit text surveys can ask questions specific to the patient’s provider, so managers can gauge the overall experience vs that with the individual provider.

By using the right data, you can aptly measure your performance so you can make meaningful improvements to your clinic and processes. And individuals can see not only where they can improve, but also see where their efforts are being recognized. It’s just as important for staff to see positive feedback as it is negative.

3. Incentivize your teams to improve/maintain reviews

People value what they work hard for, and they work harder when they’re rewarded. In the Experity webinar Improve Your Front Desk Efficiency With the Right People and Tools, Kami Scruggs — COO of  iCare Urgent Care Centers — explained that rewarding staff works well for their clinics.

Many patients find their clinics by Googling “urgent care near me,” so Google ratings and reviews play a major role in attracting new patients. iCare uses patient engagement software to send 100% of patients a link to Google to provide feedback. Patients even receive a reminder if they don’t act upon the first request. To help ensure they receive more good reviews than bad, staff is incentivized with a quarterly bonus if the rating is 4.7 or higher. Staff knows every patient will be invited to leave a review, so every single patient encounter matters.

4. Focus on your team culture

If your staff is unhappy, unengaged, or working through broken processes, it’s likely to be reflected in your overall brand. By building a strong and consistent team culture, employees are more invested in the success of the clinic. Some things that exist in a positive work culture include:

  • Employees are routinely asked to contribute ideas and feedback regarding goals and metrics, and they are heard
  • Expectations are clear and consistent
  • The clinic’s brand is well defined; leadership lives it and employees understand how to embody it
  • Wins are celebrated
  • Employees are empowered to reward each other and hold one another accountable

Learn more about how to do this in the blog How to Differentiate Your Urgent Care through Team Culture >>

5. Improve efficiency

Inefficiencies create bottlenecks and other unnecessary steps that can tarnish the patient experience. Most often it hurts wait times as well as door-to-door times. When your clinic is a well-oiled machine, patients get seen faster, get more attention from providers, and can get out the door in a timely manner. This matters a lot when it comes to their impression of your clinic. Here are some of the most basic ways you can improve efficiency.

  • Use your tools to automate and cut out paperwork everywhere possible, like preregistration, credit card processing, patient queues, and other patient communication
  • Create standard operating procedures (SOPs) so that staff is consistent and also clear about expectations
  • Use integrated solutions that can pull data from one system into another
  • Tighten up training or offer more routine training to ensure staff knows how to use the tools at their disposal and are using your SOPs
  • Get the right information from patients to get them through the visit faster, like reason for visit to prepare the room with the appropriate supplies
  • Make sure the right people are in the right roles, and that duties are combined or separated as needed to reduce efforts

Want more insights into how to make your front desk an efficiency machine? Download our free eBook Your Urgent Care Guide to Front Desk Efficiency.

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