Blog - Marketing

Balancing the Two Prongs of Healthcare Customer Service

10/22/2013

In the world of healthcare, agents are required to strike a delicate balance between serving existing clients or patients and helping generate new business. For example, the insurance industry is presently managing a significant increase in transactions due to Healthcare Reform. Coupled with many organizations also managing open enrollment, and insurance companies are really hopping to maintain high levels of customer service for their existing customers.

This is also an excellent time for insurance companies to embark upon campaigns to get new clients. Why? Because the topic of insurance is so top-of-mind. It’s the perfect opportunity to let potential new clients know that your organization has good options for them and now is the time to consider a new individual healthcare plan. Or that from a business perspective, if your plan is not grandfathered in, your company would be wise to review and renew your plans as soon as possible in order to maximize opportunities available now versus the 2014 plan year.

This balancing act can overwhelm even the most sophisticated healthcare customer service group. Keeping existing clients happy is so critical, particularly when there are options placed in front of them at every turn. And capitalizing on the buzz around healthcare is also important.

The key to balancing these two prongs is to maximize existing resources, and then devise a strategy to get some assistance in other areas. Obviously outsourcing is a good way to manage the extra volume without leaving good opportunities behind. But how do you decide what types of transactions to outsource? They are both critical to the success of your organization. Consider these tips:

  1. Determine the Best Use of Internal Resources – do you believe they are best suited to handle existing customers, but perhaps do not have the savvy needed to handle a more sales-oriented transaction? Or is the existing customer maintenance something easier to outsource? What about a blended approach? Perhaps dividing the internal resources will ensure the best coverage.
  2. Determine the Best Transactions to Outsource – before you think simple, remember that this is an opportunity to bring in experience you do not presently have inside your contact center. Perhaps now is the time to really boost the sales side of customer service. Or consider more complicated customer service transactions that take more time and cause internal resources to fall behind.
  3. Interview Outsource Partners – find a partner who has the ability to manage multiple types of transactions and can ramp up high-end agents quickly. Also, consider outsource partners who can manage to short increments and volume spikes to provide much-needed relief for your existing resources.

It is rare that an opportunity comes along that puts your industry so top-of-mind. The important thing is not to miss out on opportunities to really stand out from your competition. Get the contact center in tip-top shape by aligning with an outsource partner that ensures success for your agents and your company.

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