Pubton’s St. Swithin’s Imperial Hospital (PSSIHT) is the sole provider of National Health Hospital care and treatment for the Pubton City. It was originally founded in the late 19th Century and underwent a series of relocation and redevelopment in the 1960s. PSSIHT operates as a hospital trust and a referral hospital affiliated with the Medical School of Pubton University. Also, PSSIHT also provides health services to about 3.7 million Pubton residents. Due to the uprising trends in the service delivery in the UK, the hospital calls for a need of advancing its marketing strategies to be of high quality based on patients’ demands. Changes in the UK National Health Services have resulted in the reconsideration of modifying the hospital’s traditional user-supplier relationships to cope up with quality health service standards. The changing of the hospital’s organizational culture would lead to achieving the client-driven strategy and customer satisfaction.
How Can PSSIHT Measure Customer Satisfaction?
Customer satisfaction abbreviated as CSAT, is an effective strategy that creates happiness to customers due to the delivery of quality services. Customer satisfaction is a measure of how commodities and services provided by a firm meet or surpass clients’ expectations (Chapman and Theo 13). For a firm to ensure its products or services meet the expectation of their customers, effective marketing strategy and fair practices are necessary. Meeting the demand of customers at the right time possible improve the customer satisfaction and happiness.
The measurement of customer satisfaction by the PSSIHT mainly relies on the patients’ turnout and the quality level of the services provided to the clients. In any service organization, quality services are the key factors that improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. PSSIHT can be able to analyze the degree at which patients are satisfied by considering the way patients are treated and served. As a result, the outcomes of the patient turnout indicates the level of satisfaction in a directly proportional manner, the higher the turnout, the higher the level of satisfaction.
Another factor that can be used by the trust to determine customer satisfaction is the efficiency and effectiveness of the service processes provided to customers (Scott par. 4). As a heath institution, PSSIHT is obliged to provide quality health services in an effective manner. The effectiveness of the service provision is facilitated by efficient organizational structure between the operational and marketing departments of the hospital as well as the good relationship among staffs.
The relationship between provider staff and customer groups act as a yardstick against which the customer expectations and demands are met. The positive relationship between staffs and patients promote the delivery of services as per customers’ requests. Also, the strong relationship between the parties facilitates the attainment of the patients’ expectation and demand. As a result customer loyalty that encourages the customer to seek services more often is developed (Scott par. 6).
Practical Steps to Be Taken
The PSSHIT has to change its culture to make itself more responsible to customers’ needs through initiating a strong cooperation between its marketing and operation departments. Operational departments involve the organization of the staffs in ensuring efficient service delivery. Therefore, for the results of well-organized staffs to be clearly visible by the public, an effective market strategy should be executed. The strategy would improve the external culture of the hospital by promoting strong public relations to the patients.
Moreover, the firm should implement an effective positioning strategy to understand the market demand at the same time to increase personal contact methods between practitioners and patients. The personal contact methods act as gate-keepers to the patients or any customer who require services from the trust. Through efficient positioning strategy, the trust can estimate the customer’s demand for their services; hence, creating a balance between the supply and demand.
The PSSHIT should adopt an operative marketing philosophy that guarantees equal sharing of marketing roles and responsibilities among the organization’s members. The philosophy would involve the appointment of a Director of Corporate Communications and Marketing to support the organizational activities in both internal and external environment. Effective organization of internal operations and marketing creates a close relationship between consumption and production through quality management and customer service measures (Krstic, and Sonja 120).
Also, observing Patients’ Charter rights is an essential practical step that the trust should take to guarantee the delivery of services according to the needs and requirements of the end users. Meeting the requirements of the final consumers is an operative strategy that improves customer loyalty and satisfaction. Also, the increase in customer loyalty as a result of proper observation of the Patients’ Charter rights create a positive image of the hospital to the public.
Factors Limiting PSSIT’s Ability to Satisfy Customer’s Needs
Financial factor is among the several issues that contribute to the failure of the PSSIHT to meet the demands of its patients. The shortage of funds deteriorates the expansion of the trust’s services to cater for the needs of its patients more conveniently. Moreover, the inability of the firm to expand its services and structure result into small scale operation; thus, the number of patients treated by the firm is limited. Poor financial strength causes the trust not to implement its marketing strategy in an efficiently and effectively.
Unavailability of doctors, delayed responses, and poor consultation services is another challenge that the trust is supposed to encounter it. In most cases, doctors take long to respond to the patients’ inquiry; thus, providing poor services to patients. Apart from the delayed response, doctors provide poor consultation services in an unfriendly manner that discourages patients ever to come back again to the hospital. Customer satisfaction is met through quality service delivery; therefore, poor services fail to satisfy customer’s needs (Zeithaml, Parasuraman, and Leonard 22).
Implications of a Service Provider
The fact that PSSIT is a service provider, it is necessary for it to ensure quality service delivery and customer satisfaction through effective marketing strategies. Marketing strategies are external activities that organizations, especially, those providing services, need to advertise themselves to the public to create awareness and promote their services. Marketing strategies significantly contribute to the creation of a positive image of a firm; thus, for better results, PSSIT should implement an effective customer-oriented marketing strategy.
The efficiency of a firm is judged by the quality of the services offered to customers. The efficacy of a firm involves the provision of a high level of quality services at very lower costs. As a service provider, PSSIT is highly expected to be efficient in its operation activities to ensure delivery of services that meet customer’s demands. Fulfilling the demands of customers are based on their expectations act as a marketing strategy that promotes customer trust and loyalty (Randall and Martin 48). Therefore, for the firm to attract as many customers as possible, it should be efficient in the delivery of its services to patients.
Marketing involves the establishment of customer –centered approach through an effective line of communication between the marketing executives and the senior managers of a firm (Easton 53). Therefore, PSSIST needs to observe an operative communication system between its executives to improve the mode of service delivery by the doctors to their patients. Effective service delivery has an impact on its marketing strategy of the firm; thus, improves the company’s image to the public.
Health facilities are important centers in the life of a human being that require efficient and effective management to ensure the provision of quality health care to patients. Several factors contribute the delivery of quality health services that a firm need to consider. A heath center needs to consider the extent to which patients are satisfied, and the service providers meet their demands through effective customer satisfaction measures. For a firm to understand the level of customer satisfaction, several factors such as customer turnout and the rapport developed between a customer and a service provider portray a positive signal. Specifically, PSSIH, as a health center should adopt an operative marketing philosophy that guarantees the efficient observation of the Patients’ Charter rights and customer oriented approach. The firm should also ensure the implementation of effective positioning strategy that would accommodate the customers’ demand.
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Scott, Smith. How to Measure Customer Satisfaction: Do You Overlook these 4 Key Customer Satisfaction Measurements? 3 Dec. 2012. Web. 16 October 2015.
Zeithaml, Valarie, Parasuraman Bob, and Leonard L Berry. Delivering Quality Service. New York: Free Press, 1990. Print.