Electronic Health Record (EHR) software is a critical part of any modern orthopedic practice. EHR software makes it much easier to capture, store, and transmit patient data as needed to provide high-quality care that keeps patients coming back for more.
While a lot of EHR software vendors like to talk about the size of their customer base, how many medical specialties they service, or their large list of feature sets, there’s one aspect of an EHR that can have a much bigger impact on your user experience: the EHR customer support you get from the vendor.
Why EHR Support Matters
How long does it typically take for your orthopedic tech vendors to respond to a question you have about their software? The average customer support response time is about 7 hours and 4 minutes (Source: JitBit).
This is just the time it takes for the average company to respond to a support ticket. According to JitBit, actually fixing the issue typically takes about 82 hours—which can vary greatly depending on the exact nature of the issue being fixed.
For example, fixing a typo in a template can be done in a few minutes, but finding and remediating issues that could cause errors in a calculation may take much more time and labor.
What do you do in the nearly four days of the average response and resolution time that the typical software support team needs to address your issue? How many patient interactions would your clinic have in that time which would be affected by the problem? How much more work would the issue generate for you in that time?
The delay between reporting an issue to your EHR support team and getting a resolution to it can make a major difference in your own clinic’s operations. Being stuck with a vendor that has merely “average” EHR software support can mean having to put up with long delays that can affect your own business.
Another reason why EHR support matters is that it can be an indication of how responsive the vendor is to feedback. Proactive EHR vendors that focus on their customers’ needs tend to be more responsive and likely to act on suggestions than ones that treat software support like it’s an afterthought.
This can translate into more of the features (or fixes to existing features that make them more convenient) that customers request being made a reality. Of course, no EHR vendor has unlimited resources to follow up on every suggestion immediately, but responsive vendors who care about customer support will be more likely to prioritize frequent requests.
What Makes for Great EHR Customer Support?
Now that we’ve discussed why great EHR support is important, what does great support entail? How do top-class EHR vendors make their support systems better than the competition to increase customer satisfaction and convenience?
Here are a few things that define great software support from EHR vendors:
1. Time to Respond
Nobody likes feeling ignored. However, the average wait time for a response to any support ticket is often so long (over seven hours) that it feels like you’re being ignored.
There are a number of reasons that this delay can be so long:
- The vendor’s support system is overloaded with requests and they don’t have the resources to respond in a timely manner.
- The vendor uses outsourced support services that operate independently of their main business—and the support techs/call center employees have nothing to do with the software’s development or maintenance.
- Issues in the ticket reporting system can delay the vendor’s support team from seeing the ticket.
An EHR vendor that has the resources (and motivation) to create a support ticket system that is responsive is a crucial indication of quality.
2. Issue Resolution Rate
How frequently is the customer support department able to successfully resolve the issues you bring up to them? While not every issue can be addressed immediately, an EHR vendor should be able to consistently address common issues.
3. Frequent Communication and Status Updates
If you’ve submitted a customer ticket to the vendor, how often do they proactively communicate with you? Updates about your active support tickets are important because they help you navigate any issues while the vendor works to resolve them.
4. Acceptance of Customer Suggestions
Does the EHR vendor have a system in place for accepting requests to modify the software—like a support email address you can submit requests to?
Being receptive to customer suggestions and attempting to integrate them where possible is the hallmark of a great EHR vendor. Although not every suggestion can be implemented in a timely and practical manner, top-class EHR providers will review the requests their customers ask for the most frequently and try to implement what they can.
For example, Phoenix Ortho has a Community Forum where users can submit ideas for improving the software.
5. Live Training Sessions
Is the EHR provider willing to spend time and resources to help you master their software so you can get the most benefit out of it? Live customer training can make a huge difference in how well you (and your staff) are able to use the EHR to improve your clinical workflows.
So, when evaluating EHR vendors, be sure to look for their customer training options (if they have any)!
Additionally, check to see if the training is included in your EHR service or if it is something that you have to pay extra for. With training being included in your subscription, you can avoid unexpected cost increases when you have to train your staff in using the EHR. The best EHR vendors won’t nickel and dime you with extra training costs.
Experience Superior EHR Satisfaction with Phoenix Ortho
Phoenix Ortho goes the extra mile to ensure that our orthopedic software suite’s users are satisfied with their experience. In an industry where the average customer satisfaction rate is 76%, Phoenix Ortho maintains a 95.77% customer satisfaction rate.
We work with our customers to refine our EHR software’s features and interfaces to ensure that you are presented with the software features orthopedic practices need—and nothing that they don’t! We do this to help you save time so you can reclaim your day, help more patients, and improve your clinic’s cash flow by eliminating distractions and time-wasters.
Our rapid response to customer tickets is a major part of what drives the overall EHR satisfaction rate we enjoy. Our average response time to a support ticket is around 10 minutes—putting Phoenix Ortho in the top 5% of companies when it comes to speed of response!
Are you ready to transform your orthopedic practice’s clinical workflows to save time and improve collections? Reach out to Phoenix Ortho today!