With all the tasks on a typical account manager’s plate, it is easy to forget that account management is a customer service position at its core.
Voice of the Customer (VOC) market research by The Brooks Group is a customer-driven feedback process that enables account managers to be evaluated on a customized set of metrics approved by the Organization’s leadership team relative to their competitors. The Brooks Group routinely conducts this research as part of our healthcare management consulting offerings. Our findings have revealed healthcare organizations’ priorities with regards to the account managers who serve them and underscored the importance of giving weight to the customer feedback during the AM evaluation process.
Why Consult the Customer?
Every account manager has room for improvement in some areas. However, many struggle to identify their weaknesses without additional insight from external observers. Feedback is essential for this purpose, and customer feedback is especially useful.
Account Managers’ ultimate responsibility is to their customers. To maintain and grow their accounts, they must first satisfy those customers’ needs. A customer’s evaluation of an AM not only reflects how well that AM is doing now, but also outlines some ways they could secure more business from that account or improve their services when targeting similar accounts in the future. Consistent feedback can even prompt changes on an organizational level by shedding light on what customers really want from their account managers.
Top Customer Priorities
Our 2021 VOC surveys revealed some of the most valued measures of account manager success according to representatives of real healthcare organizations. Respondents are typically asked to rank AMs or other field-facing employees on a custom set of metrics approved by leadership. Some of these measures can include:
- Acts with the highest standards of ethics and integrity (you trust him/her to do the right thing).
- Responds quickly to your requests or concerns.
- Demonstrates that he/she is a true advocate for your patients’ needs.
All of these measures were cited as areas that deserved significant investment to help AMs improve.
Some other general areas of focus in the rest of the listed measures included:
- Knowledge of new developments and trends within the industry.
- Proactive services that anticipate customers’ needs before they are brought up.
- The ability to provide targeted suggestions based on customers’ goals and patients’ needs.
How to Learn from Your Customers
Your customers likely have a lot to say about your account managers’ services, but they may not be ready or willing to divulge their feedback face-to-face. Many people find it difficult to give a meaningful answer while on the spot, especially if what they want to say is not entirely positive.
Instead, it is often more useful to have an independent third party distribute a survey that allows them to provide that feedback in written form. This allows your customers to take their time crafting a thorough response. It also gives them the added benefit of anonymity due to response aggregation. In short, it is the best way to ensure that the feedback you get is detailed, truthful, and applicable to your organization’s goals.
Get the Ultimate Customer Insight with the Brooks Group
VOC research adds an invaluable dimension to your account manager evaluation process. By finding out what your customers really think about each of your account managers’ services, you can evaluate their performance from a new perspective and discover new pathways to improving customer satisfaction. It also helps companies in planning the right account management training for AM’s that will help close the identified skill gap.
The Brooks Group is a leading provider of healthcare executive services including healthcare market research, onboarding training for new employees, and healthcare executive leadership training. Our VOC surveys have given many healthcare firms unparalleled insight into their account management teams’ performance using custom metrics approved by the highest-ranking executives.
Contact us today to learn more about our VOC research and how we can help you better align your organization’s account management programs with the needs of real-world customers.