Stephanie Dwilson

Health Care Involvement: 5 Lessons Businesses Can Learn From Banks

You can improve health care involvement at your business by looking at how banks engage their customers. Even if you invest in a high-quality plan, it’s only as helpful as the employees who use it. When it comes to increasing involvement, many banks have successfully traveled this road long before you. Here are five tips you can learn from them.

1. Help Employees Understand that Switching Is Easy

According to a report from BancVue, although many Americans are willing to switch banks to improve their financial health, most don’t — partially because they believe switching is difficult. That’s why successful banks often focus on teaching customers that switching is easy. The same holds true for health plans. Some of your employees may avoid switching to a health plan or even using their current one because they think it’s difficult. It’s up to you to educate them that adding and using a plan is easy. Meetings and brochure guides can help, along with an open-door policy with an insurance agent.

2. Focus on Education, Not Numbers

When banks educate their customers about financial literacy, they build longer-lasting relationships, Hartford Business reported. Employers can do the same with health care. Don’t leave your employees feeling like they’re a number and you’re trying to reach a quota. Instead, show their value by educating them on healthier living. One way to do this is by starting a wellness program. This might include exercise classes, weight-loss or smoking-cessation programs, chronic disease management, health screenings and more. Not only will you increase engagement, but healthier and happier employers tend to be more productive, too.

3. Use the Latest Technology

Banks that stay on the cutting edge of technology are more attractive to customers. You’ve probably seen banks add digital deposit options and apps, and you might have even chosen a bank based on those options. Many of your employees may feel the same way about digitally modern health care. When choosing a health plan, look for plans that offer apps, telehealth advice, online tools and other options that appeal to the digitally savvy. Also look for ways your business can be more digitally health conscious. For example, you might provide wearables that track health goals or integrate with your wellness program.

4. Seek and Value Feedback

Banks know that if customers feel like their voice is important, they’re more likely to continue using their services. BBVA Compass, for example, learned that simply switching to digital deposits wasn’t enough, BAI noted. They had to listen to customer feedback and add features their customers wanted, such as increased check amount limits. The same holds true for engaging your employees about health. Poll your employees to find out if they’re using your current health plan. Ask how they feel about deductibles and premiums, if the network includes their preferred doctors and if they’re happy with the ancillary options.

5. Look for Great Customer Service

Good customer service goes a long way towards increasing involvement. As Gallup reported, customers who have positive experiences at banks are more likely to increase their deposits, investments and continue doing business at that bank. This is why many successful banks and credit unions put a premium on a positive customer experience. Health carriers experience similar trends. Your employees might not renew their plan or they might quit using the services if they have a bad customer service experience. So when you’re picking health plans, look at customer reviews and steer toward the carriers with positive feedback.

If you want to increase health care involvement, just look to banks for ideas. From going digital to focusing on people — not just numbers — you can learn many valuable lessons from banks on how to build trusting, fruitful relationships.

Stephanie Dwilson has extensive experience providing expertise on topics including health, law and marketing. She’s a science journalist published by Fox News, a marketing expert and a non-practicing attorney with experience in personal injury law. She’s also a small business expert featured by Businessweek and has worked as a PR lead for one of the largest churches in America.