One thing that you need to do first and foremost is charge a fair amount for your services. If you are not getting paid enough to cover your expenses and your payroll then you will end up cutting corners. Corners that your clients WILL notice! I realize that there is a lot of competition out there (more in some states then in others) however charging far below the minimum of your closest competitor is not the way to go. My suggestion is to first figure out how much your competitors are charging and for what services. Next look at what you are offering and your overhead costs. Remember that it takes time to build a great reputation and a lot of hard work before an agency starts to make a real profit. Quick example: In the case of the effort spent on behalf of the surrogacy agency, it may take 3 IVF cycles and 2 surrogates for some IPs to reach the goal of having a baby. This could take 2 years of your agency’s time and commitment.
What is great customer service? You don’t have to look far to find out the answer…you only need to ask yourself what you would expect if you were in the same shoes as your clients. I know I may be preaching to the choir here because quite a few agencies are owned by past Intended Parents, Donors or Surrogates. Below is my short list for exceptional customer service:
*Phone calls or messages answered or returned promptly
*Easy Accessibility to you or your staff (24 hour hot line available to clients who have retained your services)
*Taking responsibility for problems that may arise with you or your staff
*Going above and beyond when necessary
*Don’t avoid ‘difficult’ clients
*Never let more than 2 weeks go by without a phone call or e-mail to all parties involved (especially when things are going well)
*Refund when warranted (Read the post on Refunding)
*Offering up-to-date educational information to all clients. This means attending conferences and workshops within the infertility field so that YOU are educated and well informed!
So what if one or two of these little points are not on Your list? That doesn’t matter…because these items ARE on your potential client’s list along with many others. As I stated above, all you need to do is ask yourself how you would like to be treated, how you would feel "IF" and go from there. The way to build a great reputation is to offer the very best of you all in the name of customer service!