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How Rally Health Is Rethinking the Call Center

By Deepi Brar, Catherine Sharpe | February 5, 2016 | Rally Health

With the launch of our new customer service center in Denver, Colorado, Rally HealthSM is ready to transform the way customers think about service and satisfaction in health care. Our users have access to our one-stop support for many of their concerns, whether it's registration help, lost passwords, doctor search, technical problems, or other issues.

Because we’re standing by to help, our customers (health plans and employers) can focus on their business, and we can focus on providing excellent customer service. Unlike typical call centers, Rally support agents have no quotas or call time restrictions – we’re staffed to stick with people all the way to resolution. Our goal is to improve every member experience, and support our clients with high customer satisfaction ratings.

Here's how we do it.

A member of the Rally Support team is available to offer expert guidance and support online, by email, or by phone in both English and Spanish. With friendly voices and welcoming personalities, we respond to each member in their preferred way. Rally brings the consumer-centric experience home.

We know that different users have different needs and deserve customer support that best fits their unique situation.

Rally users who prefer to research their own solutions can use the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section of Rally, which has detailed instructions for solving common problems such as password resets, changing an email address, and much more. Because we monitor the ease of use and relevance of the FAQs, most of our users are able to use these tools to get everything they need.

For more complex or personal issues we offer support online, as well as by telephone and by email. Users can send inquiries 24 hours a day through our "Contact Us" form on the FAQ page, as well as by email at support@werally.com.

By phone

The Rally support hub is open weekdays from 7 am to 7 pm Mountain Time. To improve the user experience, we use limited interactive voice response (IVR) to help guide callers to someone who can help as quickly and efficiently as possible.

After hours, our system advises callers of regular business hours and we provide an email address for callers to reach out.

For users with inquiries that might fall outside our scope, a Rally support team member can access account-specific information to redirect and "warm-transfer" caller to the right place. For example, members with claims-related inquiries will be routed to the best resource in their health plan. With warm transfers from Rally, our callers only need to provide their personal information and explain their issue once – reducing frustration in already sensitive situations.

We take our time

Unlike other call centers, we spend as much time on the phone as needed to support our callers – and we don’t follow scripts or reward agents for spending less time with a caller. Our service philosophy is founded on the same principles used by other consumer organizations known for extraordinary customer service – we take the time to listen, understand, and solve. Customer satisfaction drives our operation every day and we track it with various customer satisfaction scores.

We track and follow up

Follow-up surveys are often sent when a member has an interaction with our support team, but our callers will never receive more than one every 90 days. Users receive an automated survey directly from our contact system by email after the inquiry is resolved.

Our survey questions are short and sweet and designed to keep our support services on track. Here are some examples:

  • Based on your experience today, how likely are you to recommend Rally to a friend or family member?
  • If you owned your own customer service company, how likely would you be to hire the person you interacted with?
  • Compared to your previous interactions with health care providers, how easy was your Rally experience?

Calls and emails are tracked through our contact center software.

Our team and training

We have 27 full-time staff, including our operations manager and director of consumer support, and we're growing. We developed our service philosophy and training by bringing in leaders from organizations with extraordinary customer service orientation known in the industry for fanatical customer service. Our highly-trained product experts provide general support, navigation and technical assistance.

We select polite, empathetic, fast-thinking agents for every customer-facing position. Our support team members must at minimum have a high school diploma, but are also required to pass several screening tests and in-person customer service-based tests. Tests include:

  • Customer service aptitude test
  • Employee personality profile
  • Workplace productivity profile
  • Criteria basic skills test
  • Typing test

In addition, new employees are required to pass intense customer service-related interviews. Because Rally does not use call scripting, each individual in the contact center must prove critical thinking ability to ensure problems are solved accurately and efficiently. We welcome partnerships with our customers to engage in additional customer specific trainings to ensure we are culturally sensitive to their needs.

For general training, agents go through two weeks of initial full time customer service training. Training takes time to ensure that each agent masters the basics of customer service such as empathy, call courtesies, mirroring of pace and tone, and many other valuable techniques. Agents are also trained in computer efficiency so that our customers are assisted as promptly and effectively as possible. We also require one full week of practice calls and emails before team members assist actual users — each of these interactions is scored and monitored internally for coaching.

We love feedback from our users

The support team aligns closely with our partner integration and quality testing teams as well as our product team. Rally support is an important listening post for our continuous improvement efforts. Issues on the Rally site are reviewed and triaged daily by engineering, QA, and product leads.

At Rally Health, we learn from every user interaction and have built that into our product development model. Our enhancement process is iterative and ongoing. We're constantly evaluating our development roadmap based on the feedback we receive from Rally users and customers as well as market trends in the digital health and wellness industry.

Rally is built on an underlying common interface, which allows us to monitor trends and engagement of our users across hundreds of clients and thousands of users. We gather reliable data on how users are responding to our latest innovations and site enhancements. This feedback loop informs and shapes our future enhancements. Rally support adds a qualitative element to our routine quantitative analysis -- hearing what customers are saying has an impact on how we make enhancement decisions going forward.

While we hope fewer users find the need to call our support team, we're always happy to engage with our users and get their honest feedback. Talk to you soon!

Deepi Brar, Catherine Sharpe
Rally Health