Veterinary Curbside Communication Series: Pick-Up Communication Processes to Optimize Workflow
Use these tips to streamline your curbside pick-up workflow.
Don't let curbside pick-up processes impact client satisfaction and staff workflow -- use these tips to improve the experience for everyone!
Many clinics have reported pet owner confusing stemming from curbside pick-up protocols. Often you have properly communicated procedures to pet owners but either they missed your email, didn't read everything you sent, or the person doing pick-up and drop-off is different than the person who scheduled the pet's appointment.
Fur Baby Tracker can help streamline your pick-up process with real-time text-message based communications that don't require an app download. Here are our top tips for reducing pick-up friction points:
Where do I go? Using your note database save a note that provide exact instructions for where the pet owner should go. For example perhaps you have a specific parking spot with a sign designated for pick-up. Send a pre-loaded note so they know where to go. An example note could be "Please park in pick-up parking spot #1, when you arrive call 111-111-1111 to let us know your'e here!"
How does the staff find the right car? Save a note to your note database that has a message such as "In the Fur Baby Tracker app please enter the make, model, and color of your car in the drop-off notes section, thanks!" This will allow you to see on the tracker record what kind of car the pet owner is driving to streamline the pet return process. This can be helpful if you have a high volume clinic with multiple pick-up parking spots.
How do I pay? Send a note from your saved note database that includes the phone number to call, and instructions for how they'll pay over the phone. Consider customizing the note to include a picture of the invoice so they can see the individual line items. Also consider editing the note to include to total amount they'll pay to make the payment call more efficient. Make sure the payment phone call is very personal and makes the pet owner feel appreciated. Thank them for their patience with the new protocols and make sure to ask them if there is anything you could be doing better. They'll appreciate the opportunity to provide input.
An opportunity to strengthen the bond? Curbside protocols have strained the client/doctor relationship, here are a few ideas for how you can create an opportunity to strengthen the client/doctor bond #1 Send a picture via the Fur Baby Tracker app of their pet and the staff, or their pet with a special background that says "star patient" or some other positive message to make the pet owner feel special and included. #2 Send the pet home with an unexpected surprise for the pet owner -- something simple designed to make the pet owner feel good about the experience and considered as a participant despite their physical distance #3 Send the pet home with a personally signed note from the staff/ doctor thanking the pet owner for their business and patience with curbside communications and a small note about their pet.
Continuous improvement. After the pet is checked-out and picked-up send a survey to the pet owner via a saved note in the Fur Baby Tracker note database. This will help you get quick real-time feedback and see how you can continue to improve the pet owner experience. Keep this survey to 3 questions for optimal participation. You can use a free tool such as Survey Monkey to create your survey.