As an IT professional, and an IT support group for medical practices, providing healthcare IT brings a whole different level to urgency. Of course, every issue is urgent in one way or another. Especially to the person placing the call or ticket. But what do you do when you need urgency from YOUR vendor? For example, you are a hosted phone provider using a private cloud. The cloud facility is having a problem (although that would be rare). You call them and find out they need to repair a water break. So…it goes from client, to you, to the facility, to the plumber. Trust me…the urgency is lost. I’m sure the facility has bigger problems than your one client. So how do you get urgency from your vendor?
- Build a relationship. You want them to know you, know your business, and know how important you are to them. You want to have that “person” that you can pick up the phone and say, “hey, get on this right away”. Take them for lunch, invite them for drinks, or just call to say hello. You want to have a good relationship with an important vendor.
- Let the, know how much business you can/will bring them. You have many customers, not just one. If you are willing to refer business to them, they need to know they have a lot to gain by providing top notch support to you.
- Hold them to their agreement. You most likely signed a contract, or SLA. Hold them to it. Don’t let them fall outside what they have guaranteed you when you signed on. Your business stands to lose a lot if you do not get urgency from your vendor. Push them, because chances are, your customer is pushing you.
It is mostly good to work with 3rd party vendors, since you, the medical IT support group, does not provide everything, but need to have good resources and connections for your clients. You most likely have vetted your vendors, and decided who is the best fit for your client. You have to make sure you get urgency from your vendor, and that your customer’s issues do not sit in the “ticket queue” with an average priority. Stay on top of them. They will accommodate you!