Calculating the ROI on healthcare telephone sales training

During his 6 ways to grow your business examination call we asked Mr. Darnay what his telephone conversion rate was. He replied 20%.

“And how did you arrive at that figure?” we asked. He replied that this was his general sense, because he didn’t actually count how many enquiries he received.

Uh-oh, we thought.

“Why don’t you count your enquiries?” we asked.

“Well, we have only ever logged appointments in our diary. Besides, asking my telephone receptionists to log every call might prove a bit burdensome.” said Mr. Darnay. “Is it important?”

“Yes, it’s very important,” we replied. “If you don’t know how many enquiries you get every month, how do you know you’re getting enough enquiries to sustain your goals? And how do you know if you’re converting enough of them?”

Calculating your enquiry conversion rate: as easy as 1, 2, 3

Enquiry conversion rate: If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it. In fact, the failure to count unique enquiries is one of the most common problems we see in healthcare marketing today. An old business adage, often attributed to the famous management consultant Peter Drucker, is “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. How can you possibly improve your enquiry conversion rate if you measure it?

Count your unique enquiries

We’ve heard all sorts of reasons why healthcare business people don’t measure their conversion rates, but it mainly stems from a failure to count unique enquiries.

Most doctors and medical professionals know how many appointments they have a month. And, they often know how many patients they treat every month. Usually, this information is available from receipts or from common practice management software reports. These figures, however, tell you nothing about improving your enquiry conversion rates.

We’ve supported practices in installing sophisticated marketing databases, but all you really need to get started in counting your unique enquiries is an Excel sheet.

Download a basic enquiry tracking excel sheet for free.

Counting your enquiries has 3 big benefits:

  • You can actually measure what you’re conversion rate really is, as opposed to what you suppose it may be. The number may really surprise you
  • You can measure seasonal differences in your enquiry volume. Should you do more to generate more enquiries in the summer or the winter months?
  • you can measure the impact of your marketing activities. Does your marketing actually work to generate more enquiries?

Calculate how many unique enquiries resulted in first appointments

After you have counted your enquiries for a period of at least two weeks (10 days), you will have some actual data that can help you determine your conversion rate.

Then perform the following calculation:

Enquiry conversion rate = Number of first appointments / Number of unique enquiries

Of course, the rate may mature over time (i.e. more unique enquiries may convert at a later time) so it pays to update your calculations every month. We can help you find sophisticated healthcare marketing software that enables you to do just that.

Calculate the ROI of increasing your conversion rate using telephone sales training

There are 5 ways to evaluate the impact of training and each has their own evaluation methods:

  1. Reaction (did your staff like the training?) – measured with participant surveys (most training is evaluated in this way)
  2. Learning (did your staff learn from the training?) – measured by testing participants on the learning objectives of the training
  3. Behaviour (did your staff apply the learning?) – measured by evaluating behaviour changes on the job (e.g. mystery calling)
  4. Results (did the training have a business impact?) – measured by evaluating indicators before and after the training (e.g. impact on conversion rates)

The 5th, and arguably the most important, evaluation level is Return On Investment (ROI). To measure the return on investment on healthcare telephone sales training:

  1. collect post-training data (e.g. conversion rates)
  2. isolate the effects of training (control groups are useful for this person – e.g. trained and untrained)
  3. convert data to a monetary value
  4. tabulate program costs (including fees and staff costs from missing work)
  5. calculate ROI

Although it may seem like a great deal of work, it will be worth it if you need to provide evidence regarding the value of training – to yourself or somebody else.

Calculating ROI in healthcare telephone sales training – Mr. Darnay does the math

LiveseySolar helped Mr. Darnay calculate his prospective return on investment on training his telephone staff. To do so, he simply needed to:

  1. Take the expected training fees for 2 of his 4 telephone staff members (about £1000)
  2. Add the cost of staff wages (about £250 for two staff on one day)
  3. Predict the increase in conversion rate (a conservative 10% increase – from 20% to 22%)
  4. Convert the increase in conversion rate to a monetary value (for his business, a 10% increase in conversion rate would result in an additional £105,000 in gross margin over a year)
  5. Divide the costs from the predicted gains to derive a predicted ROI (over 4000%)