I went to the doctor the other day for the first time in a long time, I was asked had I been here before which is a standard question, if I had not been before then I would have to start by filling in a lot of paperwork which normally takes 5 to 10 minutes, as I had been in previously I was ok to proceed……what got me writing this article is the time I stood at the counter to complete the obvious which was then followed by a not so enthusiastic receptionist who had clearly been having a tough day.
I have been providing visitor sign in systems for many years. Where our job is to help the receptionist make the day to day chores easier. So every day I am talking to reception staff, for the most part they’re all pretty happy. But we have all experienced a receptionist is not having a good day, it’s nearly always not their fault.
Now I have no idea how many patients a doctor can see in a day but it my visit takes 10 minutes and their are 60 minutes in an hour and the doctor works 10 hours a day seeing patients then my doctor could see up to 60 patients a day. At my local doctor’s surgery we have around 6 doctor’s, this means they may see up to 360 patients a day.
When we talk to customers of our visitor management software one of the questions we ask is how many visitors they might receive each day and second question is how many employees actually work in the building this helps us to understand how busy the location will be and also what features might help the location provide a better service for the visitors and also help the receptionists at the same time.
I wonder about the new technologies and how much doctors are embracing technology?
While I was standing in front of the receptionist at my doctor’s surgery to let the receptionist know I had arrived the receptionist was on the phone. I completely understand why as she was booking in another patient, it seemed to take a lot longer than I would expect but I could hear from the questions that the patient was having trouble making the booking over the telephone. A couple of minutes passed and I was still standing in front of the desk the receptionist had hung up the phone but as quickly as she did the phone rang again with another patient wanting to make a booking to see a doctor, I stood there patiently waiting for my opportunity to check in.
This all got me thinking about the visitor management kiosk that we provide to businesses to allow visitors to sign themselves in and sign themselves out providing instant notification of the arrival of the visitor and I wondered why my doctor could not have the same system……
What if I could have signed myself in arriving at the surgery instead of standing in front of the receptionist for 8 minutes waiting for her to be available to sign me in I could have signed myself in and been sitting down reading a book or checking my emails as I more than likely would have been doing either way I would have preferred to be doing things in my time not waiting for as long as I did. What if when I signed in I actually got a message that told me my doctor was on time or running late…… how good would that be?
Out of the box our visitor management software would do more than 85% of what a doctor would need, so now I am excited to help my doctor and your doctor resolve these issues, help the receptionist and take away some of the workload that through the day make reception staff unhappy due to the heavy load they must manage with unlimited interruptions. I know the reception staff are front desk people and their days are constantly interrupted as part of their job but I also know that be a whole lot happier if they didn’t have customers standing in front of them waiting getting impatient while they are currently trying to help another patient on the phone.
The bigger medical centers become the more system like this must be put in place
If you would like to contribute to making the life of reception staff in doctor’s surgeries healthier reach out to me and we can talk some more.