We take about 3 months to fully train our receptionists. Their job has a lot more to it than you might think, and you can help make the best use of them if you understand the job.
Using a remote or virtual reception service means that you are sharing your receptionist with other clients. All our clients are health professionals and they have certain things in common – the manner of talking to clients over the phone, polite, helpful, informative, sympathetic. We always aim to choose people to work for us who will fulfil these expectations. If they don’t they just won’t make the grade.
Your job: we train our staff about the kind of work that our clients do. Eg:
- what is a biomechanical assessment?
- What are orthotics?
- What does a chiropractor do differently to an osteopath?
- who does massage?
- If they phone a Chiropractor and start to talk about feet do they really need a Chiropodist?
There is a routine pathway for the booking conversation:
- Have you been to the clinic before?
- Who do you see or who would you like to see
- Take the information – book the appointment
- Remind them of the fee,
- 24 hours notice of cancellation, directions, parking
- Does the clinic take card payments.
All the information our clients give us about the clinic is entered into a desktop software which pops onto a screen when a call comes in. From this the receptionist can see fees, who works there, what they do, all the individual information. They also send messages from here directly. This software counts your calls and activities for billing.
If we are booking we have to see the diary. The calendars tend to be similar but they can have annoying differences. Familiarity makes life easier, so we “suggest” software we use a lot, but if you want to use something else we will accommodate you. Alternatively, if the software you choose links with google diary that works for us too.
Keep it simple
Each practitioner having their own diary is easier to follow than a shared room diary. Our receptionists have a rule that they only book into a white space in the diary. They also only book for practitioners that we know about, so if you get a new associate let us know about it!