Hospital Call Center Software – Why is it Valuable?
Hospital call center software is a valuable part of the facility’s communication ecosystem. It’s what connects the entire care team, including physicians, nurses, administrators, technicians, and even patients. Call center software automates the ebb and flow of incoming and outgoing calls, and in a healthcare setting, the call center is often where calls and code messages are born—its importance cannot be overstated.
Call center technology has come a long way in the healthcare space, and the modernization of available software has vastly improved how call centers service patients and providers alike. For a long time, this technology existed only in the form of hard-to-maintain, on-premise solutions, but it has evolved into a more modern, cloud-based, Software as a Service (SaaS) form. Even with this evolution, many hospitals and healthcare systems still use multiple (often incompatible) tools for contact inquiries. This leads to lost messages, increased call duration, stale contact information, frustrated providers and patients, and a lack of insight that often means it’s impossible to tell when and if messages have been read or received. There is much room for improvement with these processes, particularly with a single, integrated platform that eliminates siloes by housing all clinical communication.
Common Issues with Healthcare Call Center Software
With that context in place, we can look at the risks posed when communication is inhibited by inefficient technology. Let’s look at the top three issues with today’s hospital call center software:
- Legacy Call Center Technology: Many hospitals and healthcare systems still have on-premise solutions, which may not easily integrate with existing directories, scheduling solutions, patient records, and texting/messaging software. As a result, hospital call center staff have to log into multiple systems to resolve queries and manually connect people, leading to inefficient workflows, workarounds, and message loss. Legacy call center technology can also lead to significant IT costs for overlapping services due to siloed deployments, acquisitions, mergers, and software preferences. Further, the on-premise nature of this dated call center technology brings several drawbacks: facilities have to make space for physical hardware, updates can only happen manually, and connectivity problems can occur with power outages.
- Message Reliability: Call center operators and care team members sometimes lack the tools needed to know if a message has been successfully sent, delivered, or read. This leads to delays in care and potential oversight issues. Operators and care team members should be able to get instant feedback on the messages they send and receive, as well as updates on when these messages are answered and by whom. Message auditing is crucial for resource management and throughout the entire care process.
- Clinician Scheduling: Clinicians can be hard to track, especially in an environment with an ongoing pandemic as a backdrop. Operators need to be able to handle inbound patient and clinician calls without manually looking up on-call schedules and location-specific contact information for clinicians who may be located at a specific hospital, outpatient clinic, or other patient facility. Paper schedules and call center code charts quickly become outdated, inhibiting care team collaboration and slowing down the entire care process.
Benefits of Modern, HIPAA-Compliant Call Center Software
With updated call center software comes modern technology benefits. Let’s look at some of the ways modern call center solutions solve long-standing clinical collaboration problems:
- Seamless Integrations: Modern call center technology that integrates with new and existing clinical communication software enhances speed to care. Call center solutions that integrate with scheduling software, EHR records, and contact directories (among other technologies) allow for improved efficiency and cost reduction. These integrations save a health system time and money while making the lives of call center staff easier and more focused.
- Cloud-Based Technology: With a cloud-based delivery model, call center technology can be installed, repaired, rerouted, and updated from anywhere. This eliminates hardware-bound, on-premise downloads and hardware, greatly reducing the burden on IT staff. Further, if one location within a health system experiences a power outage, cloud-based call center technology gives them the ability to route calls for that facility to any operator on the platform, regardless of their location. This alleviates costly delays and ensures calls continue to get routed to the right provider in a timely manner. While legacy systems often have a physical server, cloud-based systems only require operators to have access to computers and headsets.
- Automated, Real-Time Notifications: Support for two-way communication via secure text or voice is a necessary and beneficial component of modern call center solutions. Automated escalations ensure that every message is delivered to the right place to be properly actioned, and with the right communication platform, you can also gain access to analytics and other valuable insight about call types and message flows to improve resource management.
- Real-Time Scheduling Workflows: Modern call center solutions provide flexibility that improves collaboration for providers. Some legacy call center solutions require manually written, paper-based schedules and code charts for reference. Newer call center solutions integrate into existing schedules, allowing for real-time escalation and call rerouting. Providers often have busy schedules that change frequently, and due to limited integration capabilities, on-premise call center solutions usually require staff to manually track down busy care team members. A solution that can integrate with scheduling software eliminates on-call confusion, automatically updates and reroutes calls, and speeds up care delivery.
Improving Communication Improves Care
Removing technology silos and connecting all existing communication channels improves care team collaboration. Historically, on-premise hospital call center software has been difficult or impossible to integrate with third-party paging or texting solutions, which greatly limits overall functionality and does not support the consumerization and digitization of care. Cloud-based call center solutions have changed the rules of the game by being flexible and location-agnostic while supporting easy integrations that facilitate much-needed vendor consolidation.
PerfectServe offers a range of solutions that enhance two-way communication and collaboration across the care team. Our cloud-based healthcare call center software is reliable and agent-focused, offering the scalability needed to expand during peak operation times. It sits within a broader communication and provider scheduling ecosystem that ensures HIPAA-compliant calls, automated updates and upgrades, reduced IT burden, integrated schedules, virtual call queues, powerful search queries, and so much more.
Schedule a Demo Today
By modernizing your call center, you’re improving your organization’s digital front door and building the foundation for better care team collaboration. Schedule a demo today to learn more about PerfectServe’s healthcare call center solution!