Today, clinics are being financially drained, facing physical distancing challenges, and are competing to attract and maintain patients in their local markets. Clinics falling behind in the adoption of patient self-scheduling tools could experience a decrease in patient volume over the next five years, as competitors that offer convenient self-online booking can generate digital buzz among patients, especially younger ones. Research from American Express backs up this claim as it relates to how future generations will conduct business.
The American Express studies showed about 49% of Millennials said they don’t mind speaking to customer service over the phone while only 39% of Gen Z participants claimed this was their preferred communication method (Oster, 2017). The study concluded that the vast majority of the younger generation participants would prefer to handle their tasks online than in person or on the phone (Oster, 2017). Cutting edge clinics that recognize this opportunity for connecting with younger audiences have already adopted web-based solutions like virtual clinics, and of course, online appointment booking.
Online booking delivers significant financial and competitive benefits, helps maintain patient customer base, boosts operational efficiencies and improves organizational flexibility and agility. Adopting self-scheduling delivers value by enabling call center capacity to be reallocated and schedulers to perform additional and/or more complex activities (Accenture, 2017). By expanding the patient relationship online, providers can establish closer ties with patients that can ultimately improve their ongoing health and well-being.
Accenture. (2017). Patient Engagement: Digital self-scheduling set to explode in healthcare over the next five years. https://www.accenture.com/t20170412T073547Z__w__/us-en/_acnmedia/PDF-6/Accenture-Patient-Engagement-Digital-Self-Scheduling-Explode.pdf
Oster, E. (2017, May 11). New study reveals how the expectations of Gen Z \’Are reshaping brand experiences\’. Adweek. https://www.adweek.com/brand-marketing/new-study-reveals-how-the-expectations-of-gen-z-are-reshaping-brand-experiences/