How To Choose The Right Healthcare CRM Platform?

Updated on Dec 20th, 2023

how-to-choose-right-healthcare-crm

The healthcare industry, much like any other industry, is becoming increasingly competitive every year. With so many healthcare providers promising their patients the top medical care money can buy, there are a lot of options available for the patients to choose from. And to stay ahead of the competition, the healthcare industry is depending on their customer relationship management (CRM) solutions more and more every year. 

According to a report released by Stratistics Market Research Consulting, in 2017, the global healthcare CRM market accounted for $7.6 billion and this number is expected to hit the $28.89 billion mark by 2026. In a different study it was found out that around 60% of hospitals and clinics in the United States of America use one form of CRM or other.   

To meet the constantly elevating customer demands, hospitals and clinics are employing these CRM solutions to communicate with their patients in a more meaningful manner. Given the type of sophistication we have seen in every other customer-based industry in the last few years, patients have come to expect the same seamless interaction with their healthcare providers as well.

So if you are entertaining the idea of bringing a healthcare CRM solution in your folds, then follow the below laid out steps to pick the perfect fit for you.

Why does your Healthcare organization need a CRM solution?

Why does your Healthcare organization need a CRM solution?

In today’s market scenario, it is imperative for healthcare providers to maintain good relationships with their patients. The entire healthcare industry is undergoing a massive shift. As healthcare providers increase so do options for the patients to choose from and keeping your customer retention high has never been harder than it is today. 

What patients look for in their healthcare provider these days is a closer relationship with their doctors. Being able to reach their physician via chat or a video call makes it possible for the patients to get a checkup whenever they want. 

At the same time, patients want for their healthcare provider to give attention to the finer details of their case. Patients today are ready to explore various different types of treatment that may help their case and are ready to change their healthcare provider if they feel like their needs are not being met by their current healthcare provider.

Another thing that CRM brings to the table is e-health records. These days, most hospitals maintain digital copies of their patients’ medical history. So it hardly takes any time for a physician or a nurse to fetch a patient’s health record. This saves the patients the hassle of carrying a bulky folder around and also makes the entire process a lot more streamlined.

A CRM software also makes it easier to maintain records and doctor’s time tables. And since it is up in the cloud, it is there for anyone with access to see. E-health records make for a lot less paperwork which is both eco-friendly and less tedious to handle. This also makes your data disaster resilient.

A CRM software can also help you in learning patient trends and studying their behaviour. It can point out holes in your marketing scheme and suggest changes that might help you in customer retention and customer acquisition. Automation is also something that a CRM can help you with. You can automate repetitive tasks such as making appointments, doing follow-ups, updating and adding patient records, etc.

Questions to ask before buying a CRM platform

Questions to ask before buying a CRM platform

Now that you know how a healthcare CRM platform can help you and your patients, it is time to pick the perfect fit for you. But that is easier said than done. Given the size of the healthcare CRM market, there are a lot of platforms you can choose from. It is easy to be overwhelmed by all these choices because at the end of the day, all of these CRM platforms claim to be the best one. So before you commit to one healthcare CRM platform, it is essential that you ask yourself the following questions:

1. Which tasks do you want to automate?

The first thing that you need to do is make a list of all the things that you want to automate using your CRM platform. Things like feeding patient data into a HIPAA compliant cloud storage where it can be accessed and edited by people with adequate clearance. You might also want to automate tasks like taking appointments for doctors according to their time table and rescheduling them if there is an emergency. Reminding patients of their appointments and passing patient complaints and concerns to doctors before the appointment can also be automated. Your choice of a CRM platform will hinge on this list to a great extent. So think carefully before you finalize this list.

2. What type of learning curve will your CRM platform require?

No system, regardless of how sophisticated and full of potential it is, is useless if the people who are supposed to benefit from it can’t even figure out how to use it. You will need someone with expert-level knowledge to set up your CRM after which a core team will have to be trained on how to use that system. Also, if you have an internal IT team, they will need a couple of sessions to understand the mechanics of your CRM platform and how it interacts with your network so that you don’t have to call a technician every time there is a technical issue. After that, doctors and nurses will have to learn how to use this CRM. It has to be easy and streamlined enough to replace physical labour. Also, over the course of time you might add new features to the system. So make sure that whichever CRM platform you choose, its learning curve is not too steep and it can accommodate later updates

3. What are the integrations that your CRM platform needs?

Your CRM platform will be a new addition to your existing family of IT solutions. And much like in any family, it will have to interact with other members of your family too. For instance, will your CRM platform need to interact with your website or your payroll management system? Will it need to be integrated with your record-keeping system? Many such internal connections are possible. So you need to make a list of all the integrations your CRM platform requires before you commit to one

4. What process do you want your CRM platform to manage?

A CRM platform can be involved in a lot of processes. It can be used as a way to automate appointment making and scheduling systems and it can be a part of your accounting software. It can be a part of your mass-marketing process and it can be a part of your patient relationship management system. So you need to be sure of what exactly you want your CRM platform to be involved with.

5. What is the level of security that your CRM platform will need?

When it comes to security, the healthcare industry has some pretty high standards. Any software, before it can be cleared to work in the field has to meet certain compliances. Every state has different laws and compliance requirements a healthcare software must adhere to. Your CRM must encrypt the data before storing it on the cloud and should provide accessibility control to an admin who can decide who gets to only see patient data, who gets to change it, and who doesn’t get to see it at all. This makes sure that only people of a certain clearance level get to access your data. Also, you must take into consideration all the ways your data can be lost, damaged or stolen. Data breaches are very common these days and so are random malicious attacks. Loss or damage of data can be countered with the help of regular data backups.

Key steps to choose the right healthcare CRM platform

Key Steps to choose right crm

Once you have listed down all your needs and processes that you want to automate using your CRM platform, now is the time to select the perfect CRM solution for your healthcare organization. And to help you do that, we have prepared a series of steps that you can take. While it may take you some time to get through these steps and make your final decision, it is well worth your time because rushing through the selection process and choosing a suboptimal software will mean suboptimal results and eventually, you will have to invest in changing that CRM software. So to save all that hassle and not to mention the extra time and money you will have to put in, it is necessary that you follow the steps laid out below:

1. Know the market

At any given time, in any industry, there are hot trends that everyone is running towards. You must be aware of all the latest advancements and trends in the CRM market. You need to keep a keen eye on your competitors as well, know which technologies and trends they are adapting and figure out if it will be helpful to your current process as well or not. As a buyer, you need to do your homework and know what options are out there and which out of them are for you.

2. Get your people on-board

While you can be the final authority in your organization, it is important that you get your managers, doctors, and other people on-board with your decision to bring a CRM platform to your organization. In the end, these people will have to use that software and make sure that everything runs smoothly. Employee willingness is always a challenge because nobody likes changes. So you need to talk to your people and listen to their concerns and what they want from your CRM platform

3. Shortlist five CRM vendors

Now that you know what choices are out there in the market in terms of technology and vendors, it is time to use the list of requirements that you made in the above section and pick five vendors. The vendors on this list must offer most or all of the items on your list. If you want you can have as few as three vendors on this list, but make sure that they have the potential of providing you with the services you need. Some of the key features you should look for in these vendors are great customer services, integration to your legacy system, ease of use, lean and quick.

4. Talk to the shortlisted vendors

Get in touch with the shortlisted vendors and tell them about your requirements. It is very essential that you explain your requirements to them in a straightforward way. If they understand what you need, they will be able to tell you how they are the right choice for your organization. They will tell you all the plus points of their system and all the features that can help you turn your healthcare organization into a well-oiled machine.

5. Get a demo from the vendors

Now that you’ve talked to the shortlisted vendors, it is time to see what their CRM solutions can do. Arrange demos with these vendors and before walking into a demo, have a list of things you want to focus on, questions you need to ask, and also how you are going to grade each vendor. It will also help if you make a pros and cons list. Write everything that you like during a demo in the pros column and everything that you don’t in the cons column. This will help you later once you are done with the demos and have to make your final decision. Also, if you are still not sure how you feel about any particular vendor, set up another demo and ask them to go deeper this time.

6. Ask the vendors to give you a quote

Ask all the vendors to give you a quote of their solutions. Most vendors have different pricing structures. Some work on a subscription basis with different subscription plans offering different features and some require extra money for integrations and add-ons. What you are looking for is an all-inclusive pricing, which will include the cost of storage, support, training, upgrades, etc. 

7. Check references

Make sure that you get in touch with some of the organizations who have worked with your shortlisted vendors in the past. They can offer you insights about the customers services they provide and how much their CRM solution has helped their organization. Most vendors like to flaunt their clients on their website. So you can see who’s worked with them in the past and get in touch with them. And if there are no references mentioned on the website, which is a red flag in itself, then ask the vendor to provide you a list of their clients. Usually they would be happy to but if they don’t, then that means there is something fishy.

8. Negotiate the best deal

Now that you have chosen a vendor who meets your requirements, it is time to finalize the deal. If an account is big enough, then these vendors are happy to cut you a special deal and throw in some extra features just to sweeten the pot. It all depends on your negotiation skills.

Top five healthcare CRM platforms in the market

1. Salesforce Healthcloud
2. eVariant
3. Deskera
4. IDology
5. Salesboom

1. Salesforce Healthcloud

Salesforce Healthcloud

Salesforce Healthcloud is one of the top healthcare CRM solutions. It is a proven winner in this category when it comes to sales acquisition, providing a more connected healthcare experience to the patients and customer retention. It works on a one-to-one patient journey concept that works on enhancing patient experience by providing a healthcare biome across which they are always connected. Salesforce Healthcloud is also loaded with great collaboration tools that help teams in different departments to communicate and synchronize with each other.

2. eVariant

evariant

eVariant helps hospitals in building strong relationships with their patients. It provides a multi-layered security for patient data and allows you to analyze that data to get insights that can be applied by the marketing team to form better marketing plans. eVariant provides a suite loaded with healthcare CRM features that automate the outreach campaigns across multiple social media platforms. It also helps in building stronger doctor-patient relationships, patients acquisitions and retention, etc.

3. Deskera

Deskera

It is an easy to set up healthcare CRM tool that provides full HIPPA compliance and adheres to other such regulations as well. One of its key selling points is its ability to fit into your existing IT spectrum. It provides connectivity to your patient management and billing system, content management system for your websites, and our accounting system. It tracks patient interaction across multiple touchpoints and uses positive online reviews to their capacity to get new patients.

4. IDology

IDology CRM

A new player in the CRM market, IDology is breaking new ground by being able to tell organizations about prospective new patients. IDology gathers data from multiple resources and then gives your profiles of the patients that might be interested in your services. It then tells you what type of personalized content you can send them and over which channel to engage with them and get them in your folds. IDology has the real-world data of 280 million patients from across the country

5. Salesboom

salesboom

Salesboom caters to many industries but provides specialized tools for the healthcare industry. With the help of emails, social media and other such platforms, it helps you in staying connected with your patients between their visits. It also provides a tool kit to connect your organization to referrers in order to get new patients.

Conclusion

A CRM software can help you in changing the face of your healthcare organization. It can help you in making your process more efficient and cost effective. With the addition of automation, you can save a lot of man hours by getting your CRM platform to do repetitive and trivial tasks that don’t really require human intellect. At the same time, it can help you in analyzing patient data and suggest ways you can reach out to them with better healthcare options that may speed up their treatments. With the help of data that sits in a cloud behind multiple security layers, you can also derive insights about patient behaviour and study it. You can use all this data to form better outreach plans and increase customer acquisition and retention numbers. 

A healthcare CRM software will not only make your organization a well-oiled machine but it will help you in providing better care to your patients. It will help you in enhancing patient engagement by making the checkup process more streamlined and giving them multiple ways to reach out to their physicians.

If you are looking to get a custom-made healthcare CRM platform built for your organization, then Matellio has years of experience in developing top notch healthcare solutions that meet various compliances. Hit us up to get a quote!

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