Behind The Math

2 min read

Tracking call metrics is an essential part of monitoring the performance of your healthcare call center. Call metrics can reveal the effectiveness of internal processes and indicate areas where agents might be struggling. Beyond performance, these metrics can provide opportunities for broader analysis, assisting in developing trend data about scheduling preferences that can be used to improve access and maximize scheduling volumes. With such a wealth of performance data available, it can be easy to get mired down in the numbers but it’s important to remember…

Those aren’t just numbers, those are patients.

In our experience, call metrics are rarely mutually exclusive; they all connect to shape a bigger picture of your patient experience. To provide a simple example, high abandonment rates are usually directly tied to a poor speed to answer, and this tells us that your patients are waiting for assistance long enough to simply give up. When you perceive these metrics as individual patient experiences you get a clearer view of the seriousness of your call center’s performance. Metrics like abandonment rates don’t just translate to a bad patient experience, they also are representative of missed opportunities for prevention and treatment.

Doing the math…

Call volumes can vary greatly based on practice size and specialty. Looking at the daily call volumes for some of the multi-practice organizations that we serve we arrived at 2000 calls per day as a conservative estimate for the typical inbound call volume. If your practice only takes calls during regular hours of operation (and doesn’t break for lunch) then that means you are processing roughly 220 calls per hour. A recent Talkdesk survey reported average abandonment rates between 5% and 8%, with the benchmark for healthcare being at nearly 7%. Combining these numbers with survey data about patient behavior we can begin to understand the full impact of this single metric:

A 7% abandonment rate out of 2000 calls means 140 patients gave up on reaching your practice.

If 69% of patients would switch providers for better service then that means you could be losing as many as 96 patients to competitors per day—

That’s more than 10 patients an hour!

Moreover, of the 31% who wouldn’t switch providers, that means you have more than 40 loyal patients delaying care a day.

Poor call metrics are motivation enough for improvement but when you start to interpret your metrics in this way, you begin to measure their true impact. For the sake of your patients, and the ensured continuity of your brand, the focus of performance monitoring at your healthcare call center cannot simply be agent efficiency or execution. You must go beyond the math to reveal the realities of the patient experience that these metrics represent.

Contact us for a consultation today.