23 September 2016
Welcome to my blog; which is fairly short as I have only been back from leave for two days. I always find it amazing that in only six days away from the NHS things move on quickly and you are playing catch-up with many issues.
Creating outstanding customer experience
I want to return to a subject which I have highlighted before - customer service and how the NHS can learn from the best in other industries. Over the last week, I have spent time in South East Asia in a nice hotel, but my stay was made even better by the customer service I received. The individuals in the hotel were totally focused on the customer’s needs, no task was too much trouble and it was the little things that made the stay enjoyable. When I look at the NHS, although care is generally good, we don’t really focus on the individual, we focus on doing what the system tells us. Organisational boundaries get in the way of doing the right thing for patients.
In my experience, nothing got in the way of the hotel and its staff focusing on its customers. If, as the NHS, we focused much more on the individual we would probably do many things differently. I know that many of you will say that the NHS is very different, but fundamentally we provide a public service. In providing that service we should be focused on the people we come into contact with rather than operating within a system where patients are sometimes seen as periphery to the system requirements. This isn’t universal, but you only have to look at some of the complaints I receive to understand that many of them could have been dealt with by focusing on the individual rather than just treating the symptoms.