Does the NHS really care about the Voice of the Customer?

Posted by Rant & Rave

May 2, 2014



I recently had the unfortunate experience of visiting my local NHS walk-in centre, after an incident with a can of Deep Heat spray and my eye.


Thankfully my local centre has just been renovated. As well as the fresh paint on the walls and some fancy new LCD screens I noticed this box on the wall...

Screen_Shot_2015-01-19_at_16.20.11At the start of my visit I was quite pleased to see this, well done NHS for asking what I think of the service, bravo!

But fast forward 3 hours and my patience had worn out. So I decided it was about time to make use of the ‘box on the wall’.

I must admit, it was quite daunting; because the box was placed at the front of the waiting room where around 50 people were seated - hardly an anonymous process.

I walked up to the box to see “Tell us your opinion by placing the token in the collection box and completing the feedback form”.

Just one small problem - there was no token or form. Under the instructions was a handwritten note saying “collect from reception”.

Oh great. So now not only would the whole waiting room know that I was going to have a moan, reception would too – the people who control how long I have to wait and would be watching me like a hawk to see which slot I put the token in. So... unsurprisingly, I didn't bother.

Regardless of whether I did it or not, what exactly was I being asked to review here? The initial question is quite open; they just want my opinion by putting a token into the box with the face that best describes my emotion - happy, sad or indifferent. But the sign also says “How did we do today?” and “Would you recommend this centre to a relative or friend?”.

Did that mean one token answered three questions?

What if I had been happy with the overall service, but thought they could have done better that day and wouldn't recommend them? Which face should I have chosen then? I was beyond CONFUSED!

You might have noticed the last request was the trusty NPS® question, but what relevance does that have in a walk-in centre? I wouldn't recommend a walk-in centre to anyone, besides the fact that it’s the only one that exists in my hometown. Even if it was relevant they have gone about it the wrong way, Fred Reichheld would hit the roof if he saw this!

If you are using NPS®, make sure it is relevant and measured in the right way on a scale of 0-10, and most importantly give your customers (or patients) the ability to explain the reasons behind their score.

Net Promoter Score, Net Promoter and NPS are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Satmetrix Systems and Fred Reichheld.

Take a look at our Infographic for a few reasons why you need to rethink your survey strategy:

Get your copy

© 1996-2013. Bain & Company

Topics: NHS, NPS, Patient Satisfaction

Recent Posts