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Six Top Tips to Improve Your Clients’ Home Care Experience

Published on November 29, 2022 by Sharon Morrisette

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Finding ways to improve how your home care business interacts with – and provides value to – your clients/patients and their family members not only helps you deliver the best care possible but also gives you a significant competitive advantage.

Focusing on your clients’/patients’ needs – and putting strategies in place to ensure a flawless experience along all the touchpoints of their home care journey with your company – offers considerable business value. 

The benefits of moving toward this more client/patient-centered care include the following:

  • Improved operational efficiency
  • Increased revenue and profits
  • Reduced costs 
  • Improved company reputation
  • Increased referrals
  • Better brand awareness, trust, and loyalty
  • Increased client/patient and family satisfaction
  • Higher office staff and caregiver satisfaction 
  • Increased client and caregiver retention
  • Lower litigation risk
  • Business growth.

Most importantly, a positive client/patient experience is fundamental to ensuring positive health outcomes.

For these reasons and more, smart home care providers are continually looking for innovative ways to improve their clients’/patients’ experience and engagement and see it as an investment in improving and growing their business.

Here we look at six ways to improve the client/patient experience your home care company provides to reap the benefits.

1. Build a cohesive team

scheduler given recognition_

The client/patient experience is directly impacted by every interaction with your home care business, from initial phone inquiries to visiting your website for information, making a complaint, caregiver visits, scheduling changes, paying bills, and completing feedback surveys.

This makes it vital that your entire team is fully engaged and working together to pursue a common goal: ensuring each client/patient experience is exceptional.

You can start by mapping the patient journey to identify current and potential client/patient touchpoints, and then work with your team to identify strengths, weaknesses, challenges, and opportunities.

To be sure that all team members are on the same page and working cohesively will require:

Building an effective team and providing everyone with the tools they need to perform their roles and collaborate successfully is a best practice that will contribute to delivering a top-quality client experience and the overall success of your business.

2. Fine-tune client-caregiver matching

Making great matches between your caregivers and clients significantly impacts the client/patient experience. If you can get this right, strong and lasting bonds can be built, proven to enhance client/patient satisfaction and reduce caregiver turnover.

Matching requires an excellent understanding of what each client/patient needs and what each of your caregivers can provide. In addition to physical and medical factors, coordinators/schedulers must consider location, language and cultural preferences, personalities, lifestyle habits, skill sets, and availability. 

Investing in the right technology can help you fine-tune this process, providing unique machine-learning technology and matching algorithms to ensure the right caregiver is assigned to the right client every time. It can also assist in tailoring your matching solutions to local market criteria, further strengthening the client-caregiver connection, enriching the client experience, and driving satisfaction and retention.

3. Maximize care time spent with clients/patients

Home Care Software for Caregivers

While the client/patient experience is affected by every interaction with your home care business, the primary influence will be the face-to-face time spent with their assigned caregiver(s). So, in addition to making a great match, it’s vital to maximize the care time they spend together.

Tech tools that support your caregivers on the job are ideal for enhancing both the client/patient and caregiver experience. Mobile technology, in particular, can help to simplify care management and reduce time spent on routine admin tasks, so your caregivers can spend more time engaging with clients and delivering higher quality care. 

By optimizing caregiver workflow efficiencies, providing real-time access to care plans, scheduling, route details, time tracking, documentation, and more, your home care business can deliver time-efficient and cost-effective results that will significantly improve the client/patient experience.

4. Leverage effective two-way communication

To build lasting personal relationships with your clients/patients and their families, and deliver a positive client/patient experience, requires consistent and effective two-way communication

Providing access to information and communicating effectively with clients and families are essential components of client and family-centered home care.

Streamlining and organizing all communication improves outcomes and brings many other benefits for home care providers, including:

  • Creates higher client/patient and family engagement 
  • Develops rapport to build trust and loyalty – increasing lifetime customer value (LCV)
  • Improves client/patient safety
  • Provides instant access to client and family feedback 
  • Delivers patient and family health education, improving health literacy
  • Improves office staff and caregiver job satisfaction, increasing retention
  • Simplifies care coordination (and avoids gaps in care)
  • Encourages greater medication adherence
  • Supports effective collaboration
  • Results in a higher percentage of client referrals, including positive reviews.

There are multiple ways that your home care business can facilitate excellent communication, including weekly check-in calls, virtual visits, automated texts, and more.

More tech tools are available than ever to enable communication between your remote workers, office staff, agency management, and clients/patients and their families – ensuring everyone is always connected.

It is important to remember and respect that while some clients/patients are keen to include family members in their care plans, others may want to restrict information sharing. 

5. Measure satisfaction through client/patient and family feedback 

Building online reputation

Crucial to any client/patient experience strategy is incorporating the voice of your clients/patients and their families. They can tell you better than anyone what is working well for them, what frustrates them, and which of your contact points need improvement.

It’s essential to be proactive in gathering feedback and measuring client satisfaction, for example, through regular surveys, questionnaires, focus groups, online reviews, team feedback, and in-app feedback tools. 

It’s even more important to act promptly on the feedback you receive, to show that you’re committed to delivering what your clients/patients want, that they can trust you, and that you’re listening to and respecting their preferences. 

By genuinely listening to your clients/patients and families, you’ll discover exactly where to focus your time, energy, and resources to improve the efficiency of your home care services – saving time and money.

Using home care software, like Smartcare’s Family Portal, you can give your clients and families access to tools that allow them to send instant feedback via a mobile app. For example, they can rate their experience of shifts, caregivers, your agency performance, and more. Capturing client and family feedback in real-time gives your team operational insights that will help enhance your home care services, improve the client/patient experience, and grow your business.

6. Use your data 

Regularly reviewing and analyzing the information you collect will help identify ways to adapt and improve the client/patient experience your home care business provides.

For home care providers who don’t have the time or resources to analyze multiple survey results or collate feedback from other channels, outsourcing this stage to someone specializing in home care data analysis is an option.

You can also consider setting up a ‘satisfaction team’ in-house to get the most out of collected feedback and ensure timely action is taken. This team can meet regularly to review all inputs and recommend action points based on their findings.

It’s important to remember that not all feedback will be negative! Make sure you acknowledge the positives about the many things your team is doing well and celebrate every win together. 

The bottom line is that clients/patients and their families are attracted to, and stay with, home care providers who can offer client/patient-centered care and deliver a consistently positive experience.

The efficiency and effectiveness of your home care office systems will affect your ability to provide a great client/patient care experience. At Smartcare Software, we understand the many challenges home care businesses face and how important it is to keep clients/patients and families satisfied. 

Call us today to discover how our home care software can help your business deliver first-class care consistently and realize your goals or request a free demo.