Everyone knows that the current state of the economy is stormy. However, not everyone knows what it takes to build the best shelter. Many industries, healthcare included, are taking a hit, and it's important to note that while the financial uncertainty justifies any emotional volatility felt, it’s not a conducive business practice, and there are precautionary steps you can focus on in order to increase the chance of your business’s survival.
Being able to adapt to the changing economic environment is the key to weathering the storm. In the world of senior care specifically, adaptability takes many forms.
Here are six:1. Fine-Tune Your Marketing & Sales Approach:
During a down market, many companies choose to scale back their marketing expenses. However, when it comes to senior care facilities, that’s not necessarily the best approach. The aging population of America continues to grow, and consumers are always on the lookout for their future residences. Thanks to the internet, research is easily had, and most consumers do plenty of it. After all, choosing a senior care facility is often an expensive, lifelong purchase. Therefore, it’s important to have a very strong online presence through a user-friendly website, newsletters, blogs, testimonial videos, and online reviews and ratings. You must make it clear what you are selling by touting the superior experience and level of care you provide to your residents compared to your competitors, and this makes marketing an integral part of the resident-curating process.2. Remain Resident-Focused
Consumers want to feel as though they (and their loved ones) are treated as a priority in whichever residency they choose to invest in. A simple way to do that is to ensure that residents and their families have an easy time navigating the ins and outs of the facility as far as making appointments, speaking with residence staff, touring the facility, and having a knowledgeable representative available to answer any questions that may arise. Showcasing such a high level of care in the early days leaves consumers with a good impression of the level of care and safety that can be expected should they choose to commit to your residency. Stand apart from your competitors by demonstrating a higher level of organization, attentiveness, and responsiveness.3. Personalize the Residential Experience
Consumers, current and future, want to feel as though they are getting the best deal and experience available to them. However, what one consumer may define as the “best” may not align with another’s definition. By identifying individual needs and values, you can tailor the overall experience to retain better current residents and increase your attractiveness to future residents. If residents feel as though you “get them,” they are more likely to choose your facility over one that provides a more generic-feeling level of care.4. Improve Your Internal Operations Processes
Once in the facility, it’s important that you demonstrate a consistent level of care to retain residents, as well as take advantage of opportunities later down the road with brand ambassadors and positive word-of-mouth reviews. One highly effective way of keeping residents satisfied is by improving the efficiency and productivity within your facility. Residents want fast care, meaning that if you are able to demonstrate that you understand what their problems are and how to solve them quickly, there is little room for lingering frustrations or complaints. By staying on top of your facility operations through digital platforms like primeVIEW, where you can track your census, labor, clinical, and five-star, you will not only make residents feel well-tended to, but the increased level of organization will help simplify your day-to-day workflow as well.5. Customer Service
Customer service includes everything from answering questions and fulfilling general physical therapy to providing personalized tech support services for residents on an as-needed basis. The process of moving away from home, away from friends and family, and moving into an unfamiliar facility is an often-overlooked sacrifice, meaning that for residents and their families, communication becomes key. Communication reflects competency. Therefore, facilities that make a conscious effort to prioritize high levels of communication between residents and their families are seen as more attractive, as the increased transparency allows families to rest easy knowing that their loved one is being well taken care of.
6. Keep Your Finances in Order
Senior care facilities have many moving parts, and sometimes, items fall through the cracks — including payments. One issue many facilities face is managing the billing process, thus prolonging payments and cash turnover. Luckily, platforms such as our primeCLAIMS can act as your revenue cycle management system, allowing you to streamline the billing process by reducing DSO, time spent collecting and organizing paperwork, and offering unique claim-to-claim reviews. During a time when financial resources are already scarce, the last thing you want to do is approach claims with negligence.
It’s not a matter of if but when the economy will begin to recover, and while not everything is within personal control, taking the above measures will serve to protect your business during the darkest days.
Focus on the positives, on the areas that you can improve upon, and you will be able to take advantage of the circumstances rather than become a victim of them.
Have any other tips you’d like to share with us? Let us know!