About a month ago I blogged about a bad experience I had going for blood tests. One of the main problems was that there was understanding of the customer or client perspective. It felt as though I was being patronised and that the whole process had lost sight of what was important and that is the individual. It led me to question whether there had been any customer journey mapping done in the NHS, a question that I still haven’t found a definitive answer to.
Today I had to return to have more blood tests done and it was a totally different experience. The nurse was friendly and helpful. Although I was only in for around five minutes she was able to put me at my ease and I felt that she was focused on me, not the process, not the demanding workload, not the targets she may have to meet. I left wishing her a good rest of her day and she said likewise. It could not have been more different.
I left the interaction feeling like a real person and not just a number that had been rushed through the system. Why did I feel like that? It was down to one woman and the fact that she was able to be professional but also a real person. She may have been having a bad day, be under pressure at work (there were around 10 people waiting when I left), or have some personal issues but none of this affected how she was with me.
Being able to focus on the customer is essential no matter what the business is. However, when you are providing a public sector service this is the most important thing. Whether you are a patient, a victim, a resident or something else you should always feel that the support is there for you as an individual. From today, I have revised my views of the NHS and realised that when the people are good the service is good, but like too many others the individual can get lost in the process.
I hope the nurse today realised how much I valued her personable approach that made it a more acceptable experience.