Many assisted living facilities erroneously believe that good customer service just means having enough staff on hand to assist residents with everything, from getting them admitted into a facility to arranging transportation for them to a doctor’s office or hospital.
Good customer service means much more. It also means delivering marketing promises made when admitting new residents. Unless service managers know what their customers want and how they can help them out, they will, by default, provide insufficient customer service.
Here are three ways these centers can ensure their residents receive the quality of customer assistance they need to thrive in an assisted living community.
1. Smart Technology
Assisted living technology refers to a variety of user-friendly tech that helps people with disabilities live independently. For instance, wearables, mobile devices, EMR, and predictive analytics noticeably improve the quality of life at a center.
Here’s how they provide value:
- Wearables and mobile devices empower seniors to remain independent. With wearables, they can track their physical activity levels or sleeping patterns. With mobile devices, they can stay connected with family and friends, read eBooks, and watch movies.
- An Electronic Medical Record (EMR) allows residents to benefit from the use of telemedicine, an effective way to get personal medical care without visiting a healthcare professional.
- Predictive analytics help seniors feel safe and secure when they step out of their room. This technology can identify patterns in sensor data and lead to the early detection of potential life-threatening problems. Additionally, they can provide incident response recommendations that can reduce the severity of a health crisis or prevent it altogether.
2. Quality Control
Customer service managers need to know how visitors and residents feel about the quality of the services they’re getting.
Asking residents and their families to fill out a survey after a customer service experience is an uncomplicated way to gauge the level of satisfaction. These surveys take anywhere from five minutes to an hour and can be used to improve customer service.
Customer feedback—data in the form of answers, comments, and requests—can be analyzed to enhance quality of care. If, for example, service managers learn residents feel dissatisfied when contacting customer service, they can set up a system to quickly respond to inquiries or requests for assistance.
3. Personal Care Services
When families visit an assisted living center to see if their loved ones would be happier there than living at home, many people are surprised at the number of personal care services available.
For instance, basic residential care centers offer a range of services, from light housekeeping and meal preparation to transportation and 24/7 assistance with activities such as bathing, dressing, grooming, eating, sleeping and toileting. Things get even better with luxurious assisted living communities. Besides providing these services, they also provide residents with all the amenities of a resort hotel.
By adding what personal care services seniors desire, a center can improve the benefits it provides its residents.
The Long-Term Cost of Neglecting Customer Service
Assisted living centers are ideal for seniors because they offer them a place where they can live comfortably while receiving medical treatment, therapy, and enjoying recreational activities.
Unfortunately, there are two distinct types of centers: those that neglect customer service and those that prioritize it.
Centers that neglect customer service will have trouble attracting and keeping residents. Residents who feel like they’re not getting the care they need will eventually leave for a better place.
By contrast, centers that prioritize customer service have invested time and money to create a culture of excellent customer service so that their residents feel valued. These progressive centers recognize that the demand for assisted living will only increase as society develops at an accelerated rate.
With the number of seniors over 65 in the US expected to increase to almost 90 million by 2050, centers with good customer service will increase in demand revenues while those with bad customer service will struggle to stay in business.