We’re talking about Net Promoter Scores. It’s a scoring system, historically used in consumer-based industries, that shows how likely customers say they are to recommend a product or service to a friend.
So, why do our industry-leading health system partners use a metric from a consumer-based world? And what makes those numbers so important? Why should the healthcare industry even care about NPS?
As patients take on more of the financial burden of healthcare costs, they expect health systems to meet their needs and wants in ways similar to how they encounter consumer-focused brands: experiences designed around simplicity and ease of use.
A high NPS can tell a health system that their patients are happy with their experience, and likely to come back to the health system in the future. A low one, however, means something needs to change or the provider is likely to lose patients. Health systems need to strive for patient satisfaction, and Net Promoter Score is a good indicator of that goal. In the midst of a global pandemic and widespread economic challenges, health systems need to not only look out for the health and wellbeing of their patients, they need to ensure their own financial viability as well.
To encourage and maintain patient engagement, health systems need to recognize that the financial experience patients receive is as important as the clinical one. Patients see the two as intrinsically linked, from intake to final bill, and so a poor payment encounter will damage their view of the entire end-to-end journey. Finding your Net Promoter Score is a great place to start. Measuring and tracking your NPS can help shed light on how well your financial experience serves your patients. And the results can be extremely actionable.
For example, when Carilion Clinic decided it was time to build a better financial experience, they designed one that put the patient first. That meant it needed to be digital, compassionate, intuitive, and tailored to the patient. The health system launched a new payment approach and is actively tracking its success by measuring NPS to ensure patients’ needs are met. They’re actually benchmarking performance against companies in industries outside healthcare—another advantage of such a widely used scoring system. The healthcare industry hasn’t traditionally been known for a very patient-friendly approach to billing, and so Carilion Clinic wanted to measure itself against brands that are well-respected as consumer-first leaders.
Customer-focused brands like Nike, Target, and Mercedes-Benz have Net Promoter Scores that range between 30 and 43, with 100 being the highest possible score. The healthcare industry, on the other hand, averages scores between 16 and 27. And that is exactly why seeing our partner health systems with scores in the 40s says so much.
It says that some health systems are changing, improving. It says they are learning from customer-friendly brands. It says they’re putting their patients first. Most importantly, it says that those patients are happy with the new way of doing things.
Simply put: the numbers say it all.
We gathered together our insights and expertise in our latest ebook, “Keeping Score: Why Net Promoter Score Matters to Healthcare.” Inside, you’ll find more information about NPS, why it is a critical new metric for healthcare, and how to put NPS to work in your health system. We encourage you to download it and contact us with questions.