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4 Ways NEMT Companies Can Deliver Exceptional Customer Experiences 

Imagine that you have an important doctor’s appointment, and it’s your first time using a ride service to get there. 

You’re already anxious about the appointment and have never relied on non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT), so you’re a bit nervous about this new experience. 

They said your driver would arrive at 9:30 a.m. but were five minutes late. What if you miss your appointment? 

The driver gives you a nod and a brief hello and opens the door for you, but that’s it. When you enter the van, it smells terrible and needs cleaning. 

As you make your way to the appointment, the driver is silent, and you’re too nervous to say anything. Besides, he’s driving very fast, making you uncomfortable. You want to make it on time, but not at the expense of your safety. 

You finally reach your doctor’s office; the driver gets out and opens the door but barely says anything to you as you exit. You were already five minutes behind, and the van got into some traffic, so now you’re 10 minutes late and afraid they’ll make you reschedule.   

You probably wouldn’t use this transportation again, or if you did, you’d ask for a different company. 

Customer Service Matters 

While this is an example story, it’s always important to remember that NEMT providers must provide their clients with a safe, comfortable experience. 

Unfortunately, too many customers have had a similar experience to the one described above. They’re likely nervous about their appointment and using a new service, so if they’re not treated kindly or feel uncomfortable during the ride, they will only choose you again if they have to. 

Bad customer service leads to a poor customer experience, negatively impacting your company. For many NEMT providers, reputation is crucial to earning business. That’s why ensuring every client has a great ride is essential. 

Thankfully, providing a stellar experience isn’t that difficult, especially when you have help from the right NEMT software, which allows you to focus more on your customers. 

Let’s look at four simple—but vital—ways your NEMT business can provide incredible customer service. 

1. Be on Time and Reliable 

Punctuality can make or break a business in the NEMT industry. 

It’s critical for any transportation company, but arriving promptly is vital when your clients must be at their medical appointments at a specific time. If they are late or miss an appointment while using your service, that responsibility falls on you. 

Investing in an efficient scheduling system can help you organize and optimize your scheduling workflow more effectively. 

Still, even with the best systems in place, things happen that are out of your control. That’s where clear, immediate communication comes in. 

Your drivers and dispatchers must be able to maintain constant communication, updating each other on schedule or route changes, travel issues, and more. The more effective the communication they have, the easier it is to keep customers updated on any changes in scheduling so they’re not left wondering. 

Reliability is what matters. When your company consistently shows up on time or communicates to the customer any issues and what they should expect, you earn their trust and are much more likely to keep their business. 

Customers who trust a company are often quick to tell their friends and family about it, which provides more potential business. 

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2. Make Them Feel Comfortable and Safe 

First impressions matter; if your vehicles look beat up on the outside or unclean and smelly on the inside, your customers likely won’t enjoy their ride much. 

Ensuring each vehicle is well maintained both inside and out is essential. Especially in medical situations, you can provide greater comfort by creating an environment that looks, feels, and smells clean. 

Ideally, you clean and sanitize your vehicles daily to ensure they’re always ready for the next day’s passengers. 

If you want to go the extra mile, provide small amenities like bottles of water and blankets to help make them feel extra cared for. 

While comfort is important, feeling safe is imperative

You can make them feel as comfortable as possible, but if they’re on the edge of their seat for fear that they’ll fly out of the vehicle at any point, that’s not a good sign. 

Safety starts with ensuring the proper accessibility for wheelchairs and harnesses for all riders. Once everyone’s appropriately secured in the vehicle, your driver must provide a smooth ride to the destination. 

Hiring drivers with clean driving records and providing the proper training, such as PASS and defensive driving courses, can ensure passengers are in safe hands with them behind the wheel. 

Drivers must pay attention to the road and their surroundings, as distracted drivers become dangerous quickly. This includes driving the speed limit, making full stops, and observing proper driving etiquette. 

3. Be Professional and Compassionate 

Everyone in your organization who works directly with customers must always possess a courteous and thoughtful attitude toward them. 

The best way to incorporate professionalism and compassion into your customer service is by practicing empathy with each client your team interacts with. Empathy is simply putting yourself in your client’s shoes and understanding and appreciating their perspectives. 

Every day, your operators and drivers interact with clients who are elderly, disabled, or struggling with a medical issue. Showing them kindness and treating them with dignity and respect goes a long way to earning their trust. 

Communicate with each client. Understand and do your best to accommodate their needs. Go out of your way to make them feel special. 

Treating every person in these ways not only makes for a better experience for them but it helps build a strong relationship with your clients. 

4. Provide Flexible Booking and Payment Options 

If you’re trying to expand your client base to include more private pay customers, making it easier to book and pay for rides is beneficial. 

When customers visit your website, make it easy to find the link to book a ride, with a user-friendly form for them to fill out. This is an excellent place to set clear expectations for your process and services. 

By utilizing an online booking platform, you can connect it with NEMT software to streamline your scheduling process

Some customers may prefer to reserve their ride over the phone. Train your team on the best way to input this information into the system to ensure quick and accurate scheduling, making the customer’s process as painless as possible. 

For additional convenience, offer customers a variety of accepted payment methods. Cash, check, credit and debit cards, and private insurance billing are typical, but you may consider electronic payment methods like PayPal and Venmo. 

NEMT software can also help you process payments and track invoices more efficiently. 

How NEMT Software Can Enhance the Customer Service Process 

Using a comprehensive NEMT software like Tobi frees up your team to focus less on the mundane details of business and more on the quality of care they provide your customers. 

Scheduling and Booking: Tobi automates tasks, generally taking dispatchers hours to finish. 

Communication: Enhance communication between drivers and dispatchers to react swiftly to trip changes and vehicle availability. 

Billing and Payments: Handle invoicing, manage claims, and track reimbursement issues, all from a unified, cloud-based platform designed for seamless billing and claims management

Are you curious how Tobi can help you run your NEMT operations more efficiently? Sign up for a free 30-day trial and experience how Tobi makes your business better at every turn.