From airline tickets to restaurant reservations, we live in an era in which the DIY (Do it yourself) philosophy has gone digital. Thanks to websites like Expedia, Open Table and countless others, millions of people can buy products and schedule services without ever stepping into a business or talking to another human being.
It’s a trend that appeals to people because it provides both convenience and control — and, as this infographic from Accenture suggests, it’s poised to play a big role in healthcare as digital self-scheduling of appointments is set to explode:
As noted above, the ability to book, change or cancel appointments appeals to today’s time-pressed and tech-savvy consumer. And if the number-crunchers at Accenture are correct, it should also appeal to providers as the nearly 1 billion self-scheduled appointments predicted in 2019 translate into $3.2 billion in savings in that year alone.
True, the bulk of those savings will accrue to large healthcare systems with large call centers or scheduling departments but forward-thinking aesthetic professionals are already using such systems to streamline their operations. And with dozens of vendors now offering scheduling software and services, it’s safe to say that large systems aren’t the only ones who stand to benefit.
Patients like convenience, control and doctors who enable it
For many of today’s tech-savvy consumers, the ability to book services online is more or less a birthright — if they can’t do it themselves at a time that suits them, they’ll find another service that will accommodate them. In that light, doctors who incorporate self-scheduling into their practices create a key differentiator between themselves and less forward-thinking providers.