Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
CEO Minute: Lessons Learned From Across The Pond

CEO Minute: Lessons Learned From Across The Pond

CEO Minute: Lessons Learned From Across The Pond- image0If you watched the London Olympics, you couldn’t help but notice that along with the beauty and history of the place, London is a huge city with a lot of traffic, people and congestion. Therefore, a London-based company called eCourier caught my eye in a business journal I was reading.  eCourier is one of about 350 courier companies that operate in this crowded city. What a mundane industry, you might say. But eCourier stands out from the crowd. They have made a name for themselves by providing superior customer service and through the use of technology — Two things I believe can help Texas Tech Physicians.

Most folks know that TTP has made some great strides in patient satisfaction over the last few years, as well as in the use of technology.  But we are just getting started, and there is much more we can do.

For example, eCourier uses operational business intelligence to keep real-time tabs on customer satisfaction.  As we all know, people tend to vote with their feet and we can lose a patient from our practice and never know about it.

With operational business intelligence,  a sharp drop or increase in bookings or a change in dormant account activity generates an alert sent to that client’s account manager. This person then uses the opportunity to problem solve and regain the customer.  In other words, eCourier knows their customers. Not in a big brother way, but in a way that says, “You are important to us and we are here to serve you.”

The other big factor in eCourier’s success is technology. In 2009, eCourier reached No. 6 on Deloitte's list of fastest growing United Kingdom technological businesses over the preceding five years.  They seem to know what their customers want before the customers do. They anticipate needs of their customers using a sophisticated data system that stores a customer preferences and information.

In another clever use of technology, 95 percent of eCourier’s deliveries are booked online, while a majority of their competitors still rely on the phone.

What goal, in terms of percentage of our appointments made over the patient portal, would be appropriate over the next three years?  What is the best way to tell patients of appointments?  Texting? Should we do something like our friends at UMC/PNS and set up a wait-from-home type program? A friend told me recently he loves our practice, but he has to answer the same questions every time he comes to one of our clinics and this is information that does not change.  Surely we can do better.  Maybe we can learn some lessons from a courier service that is across the pond and on their game.