Service research Health Insurers: Three tips on improving your online service

2018-12-05T17:31:58+00:00November 2018|Health Insurance, Insights, Netherlands|

Last summer, WUA conducted a service research among 5,100 customers of CZ, Menzis, VGZ, DeFriesland, Univé, and Zilveren Kruis, with the goal of assessing the insurers’ digital service quality. In the Web Service Scan Health Insurers, the service of CZ is evaluated highest. In all, 7 care responsibilities were studied, such as the search for a contracted physical therapist, and solving payment delays.

In this article, you can read all about how this digital service research was set up, and we’ll give three tips for improving your digital service.

CZ highly appreciated on service tasks Claims and Insight in Health Care Use

For every health insurer, WUA asks between 1,000 and 1,300 respondents to perform 7 service tasks in total. The service tasks come with different task descriptions and are diverse, ranging from solving payment delays to finding a contracted physical therapist, or changing one’s deductible. Each customer performs 1 of these 7 service tasks. On average, CZ is appreciated the highest in this research. The CZ customers are especially happy with the ease with which they can find more about patient transport reimbursement, and insights into one’s health care use. Thanks to this high-quality guidance toward finding the solution, customers give CZ a Web Service Score of 79.

The seven service tasks studied

In the WUA Web Service Scan, there are clear descriptions of what customers expect and experience in digital service. In the health care research, the presented service tasks are the tasks that are most prevalent in the health insurers’ call centers. The tasks below were performed by a total of 5,100 customers of large health insurers.

  1. Payment delays
  2. Reimbursement patient transport
  3. Finding a contracted physical therapist
  4. Filing claims
  5.  Insights in health care use
  6. Changing deductible
  7. Current health plan

The WUA Web Service Scan Model

The Web Service Scan is rooted in the Web Service Model. The more customer comfort you realize in important customer service experiences, the higher the loyalty will be, and the lower the costs in your call center. The WUA Web Service Scan Model consists of the following elements:

Functional
Can customers fix the problem themselves? How much effort will it take to solve the problem (Customer Effort Score)?

Rational
This includes questions such as: are we making things as easy as possible for the customer? Are we offering the right means? Is the navigation clear?

Emotional
This measures whether the provider actually makes the customers happy. We also study whether the website presents information in a pleasant way and whether the provider does more than the client expects beforehand.

Three tips on improving your digital service quality

The research shows, at a task level, the status of digital service quality of large health insurers. Below, we establish a few practical tips that will help you get started on improving your digital service in health care.

#1 VGZ & Zilveren Kruis: filing claims quickly inspires confidence

Zilveren Kruis scores high on the tasks ‘Payment delays’ and on ‘Finding a contracted physical therapist’. Customers of Zilveren Kruis say about finding a contracted physical therapist: “Short and sweet, the point is clear but the information is complete.” VGZ also shows that a short, powerful website is appreciated. The health insurer performs well in service tasks ‘Claims’ and ‘Current insurance’.

The customer follows a two-step process to file their health care claims. This isn’t just easy, it inspires confidence in clients. As a customer says: “They know what customers need from the website.” Zilveren Kruis has the shortest claims process, however: the client instantly gets to the place where they can upload and file their bills.

#2 CZ: Service not only on the website

A “good, fast service”, that’s the response a CZ customer has to a question on why they’d recommend this health insurer. For years on end, the insurer knows to instill the feeling in its customers that they’re the number one priority for CZ. The options for customer service are clearly presented on the website, and thanks to helpful photo usage, the customer service has a face as well.

The customer is also assisted in a friendly manner in the website’s communication. The customer is able to quickly find solutions in the easy-to-use menu, and by using the button stating “the care team is at your service”, the customer can get in touch with the health insurer quickly. CZ doesn’t just offer good service on its website, but also offline for those customers who need more information.

#3 De Friesland: App makes logging on easy

In the final care task, obtaining details on one’s current health plan, customers of health insurers De Friesland and Univé are also included. In this aspect, De Friesland has a relatively low score overall. With a score of 77, they rank below the other insurers, whose service scores are all 80 or above.

However: customers of De Friesland appreciate the process of logging in with De Friesland, using a QR code. This is similar to the process used by ING for making payments in online banking, as well as the process used by WhatsApp when logging on to Whatsapp on a computer. Thanks to this process, they avoid oft-heard complaints such as: “It’s annoying to me to have to log in using my DigiD code” and “I’d prefer not having to use my DigiD code to log in. It’s quite a roundabout way.”

About the research: Web Service Scan Health Insurers

Customers expect excellent online service, in health care as well as anywhere else. This research shows, at service level, the current state of affairs of customer experience of the most important service tasks of four large health insurers in the Dutch health care market. Smaller parties not included in this top-4 also benefit from this research: they can learn from the best parties, benchmark their service performance, and how to take big steps forward in digital service.