The current issue of 1to1 Magazine studies companies that deliver truly personal customer experience by phone. One of these companies is Health Advocate, an advocacy and assistance service company that addresses issues Americans encounter while accessing the nation’s complex healthcare and health insurance systems.
Staffed by medical and claims experts that worked in the provider and insurance networks, they know how to cut through the bureaucracies. And they’re eager to help a member solve a problem.
No forms or prequalification
“We designed our call center to be the antithesis of the healthcare customer service you usually get,” says Kelly Johnston, chief operating officer at Health Advocate. “Our intent is to help people navigate the healthcare system, and we let them define what that means on that particular day,”
Personalized service begins with the first call
“We don’t use an IVR or voice mail, and that was a very intentional decision…the intent is that when someone calls us with a need, they are working over and over with the same person for as long as they want,” Johnston says.
Problem-solving is the focus, but operational metrics are still important
“We monitor average speed of answer and answer rates, because we have to make sure we answer calls just like anybody else. We have to keep an eye on utilization, but that means we need to help our advocates get to resources more quickly rather than try to manage talk time or [limit] the number of contacts made,” Johnston says. “We want people to call, so our obligation is to make sure our people have the knowledge they need.”
The formula seems to work. Founded in 2001 by five former Aetna U.S. Healthcare senior executives, today Health Advocate serves more than 6 million Americans.
For more information on this fascinating customer-centric company, check out the 1to1 Magazine article and the Health Advocate Case Study on Cincom’s web site.