Digital Solutions to Combat Healthcare Staff Burnout

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By Dave Mastovich

We’re in the midst of the great resignation and the talent wars, where retention and recruiting are so important to every organization, but even more so to healthcare organizations.

This is an ideal time to contemplate how digital solutions can help your team combat medical provider and staff burnout.

And those same healthcare organizations have to continually recruit and retain patients, their clients, or their customers on the healthcare side. 

There are three ways to leverage digital solutions and the power of storytelling to help with recruiting and retention of employees, and to help with recruitment and retention of patients. 

Step 1 is to systematically gather insights. Talk about, hear from, learn from patients and employees. Systematically gather insights by having three to five open-ended questions that you ask patients and employees through different channels at different times, and then you track as much as you hear qualitatively. 

So, you’re qualitatively, systematically gathering insights by talking to employees, talking to patients, asking them, what’s the one thing they’d change to improve the patient journey? What’s the one reason that they stay as an employee or as a patient? Ask them these open-ended questions to systematically gather feedback. 

But then also, systematically gather feedback by studying the length of time that a patient who calls your call center is on the line, the length of time they might be on hold, the length of time it takes to get them to resolution. 

Look at how long your patients are on your website, and what are they doing? Are they able to get the information they need? Quickly? Or are they coming to your website and leaving immediately?

You want to look at what you see that are trends about your patients, what’s their location? Where are they from? What’s their age? What’s their biggest concern? What’s the thing that made them come to you? 

The answers to these questions should enable you to find opportunities to make your patient experience, your patient journey better, which will then lead to more patients, and keep the existing ones and could very well lower your costs. 

Step 2 is to find solutions that leverage digital technology. So, if it is a problem with scheduling, you make ways of doing that scheduling online and more conveniently, and you tell that story again and again about how it happened, why it happened and what’s in it for the patient – the current or prospective patient. 

Once someone is scheduled, you use automatic reminders, and you talk to them about how important that is. You incorporate telehealth to reduce patient no-shows. 

Step 3 then incorporates your storytelling. And there are two or three major parts of the storytelling. 

One is your patient storytelling. That’s obvious. You want to talk to current and potential patients, and you want to use anecdotes and analogies that they’ll relate to. About how you’ve enhanced the patient journey, and how it can be convenient to them through digital solutions, and how your providers have compassionate care and the expertise to get things done. 

You also need B-to-E, business-to-employee storytelling, which are stories built by, for and about your current and prospective employees. B-to-E storytelling helps with the three R’s, recruiting, retention and results. Results because your productivity goes up when communication is enhanced, through business-to-employee storytelling, B-to-E storytelling. 

Your recruiting is helped by telling your recruitment story and B-to-E storytelling. Your retention is helped because you’ve talked about employees and built that story by, for and about employees. That’s the B-to-E storytelling. 

A third type of storytelling is referral source storytelling. You have referral sources who send you patients. It could be other physicians, it could be healthcare systems social services, utilization of review patient discharge, it could be others in health care, could be someone for senior living that was a social services type agency. 

You have referral sources, those referral sources need to have a systematic marketing plan – systematic, the key word – leveraging the art and science of marketing and the art and science of storytelling. And you have to have specific anecdotes and analogies built for those referral sources.

Digital solutions can save time, resources and costs — and build trust. 

This all ties back to your organization, your employees, your providers, and helping reduce their stress, save them time, and save the organization money. That is how digital solutions can combat medical provider and staff burnout. 

Author and marketing trailblazer Dave Mastovich has helped companies transform their messaging and improve their Marketing ROI for decades. He’s founder and CEO of MASSolutions, host of the No BS Marketing podcast and author of the book Get Where You Want to Go Through Marketing, Selling and Story Telling. His blog, Light Reading, has been featured in over 50 media outlets with readership of more than 1 million.