They say communication is the foundation of every great relationship. So often we take that to mean our personal relationships—with spouses, loved ones or close friends—but I think communication is foundational for a great client experience too.

We’ve tried hard to put that into practice here at Zelis, working relentlessly to modernize the healthcare financial experience for all. I’m both proud and humbled to share our efforts were recently recognized by KLAS, a leading healthcare IT research company. Zelis was named a top performer in KLAS’s inaugural Payment Accuracy & Integrity Solutions 2023 report. We received a score of 93.9, the highest across all payer-measured segments.

What have we learned from this honor? How did we achieve the high rating, and what does that mean for the year ahead?

Be trustworthy.

You want to be a trusted advisor to your clients, and that’s a role you have to earn every single day. No exceptions. No glossing over difficult conversations.

So often a vendor-client relationship is superficial. They go as deep as necessary to get the sale. That’s not enough. Building a remarkable client experience means shifting from an acquaintance mindset to a relationship mindset.

You need to understand the why behind your client’s needs. Take time to learn who your clients are and how you can support them. Understand their biggest challenges and celebrate their victories alongside them. Know their customer base as well as they do.

One of our clients shared this feedback with KLAS, and I think they sum it up well:

“One thing that is important to mention is that Zelis Healthcare seems to be interested in and understand our operations. I can compare them to another very important vendor of ours who always wants to learn more about us so they can sell us more products. Zelis Healthcare is willing to engage with us and understand our business model, whether that means they can sell us more or they just want to do a better job for us.” VP[i]

At Zelis, we have a vested interest in being a differential business partner. We want to understand our client’s business at a level of depth others don’t take time to do. We do it because it’s the right thing to do. We work to earn their business and trust every single day.

Building trust takes an ongoing commitment. It’s a never-ending effort that takes a long time to secure. Unfortunately, that trust can erode in an instant. That’s why we work so hard to earn our clients’ trust. We believe it’s a core tenant of a successful relationship.

Being a “trusted advisor” is a bit of a buzz word these days. But having a sincere desire and intentionality to being someone a client comes to when they have issues or needs is what can set you apart. At Zelis, we don’t take our relationship with clients lightly and are invested in deep consultative and collaborative experiences with our clients.

Be flexible.

None of us are immune to the rapid changes in the healthcare industry. New requirements are emerging constantly. Add to that the challenge of keeping up with billing trends and concerns about inappropriate coding, and it’s no wonder health plans and TPAs are overwhelmed. That’s all the more reason for us to stay nimble. The more agile we can be this year, the better.

But how do we practice agility while we are also evolving, growing and building for the future?

One way to help balance all this is to leverage both artificial and human intelligence. AI is getting a lot of well-deserved attention, but human intelligence must come alongside that technology to provide a well-rounded, experience-driven outcome. A member of my team, our Chief Medical Officer Dr. Timothy Garrett, recently wrote an article about the intersection of automation and human expertise along these lines.

The benefits of leveraging clinicians and coders in the claims review process speak for themselves, as a client shared during an interview with KLAS:

“The vendor always provides insightful information. I recently got a call from my Zelis Healthcare contact reminding me about our annual review. The vendor is very good at being insightful when looking toward the future and being proactive.” —VP/Other Executive[ii]

A team of expert coders—like those on our team here at Zelis—has the clinical experience to uncover hidden insights. They have decades of experience understanding medical records, healthcare claims and coding, and clinical considerations. They’re able to comingle all that experience to ensure claims are being paid accurately. That additional perspective can help you adjust accordingly when hiccups arise along the way. It provides for a more well-rounded approach that gives you more room to be flexible.

Be sincere.

Invest in your clients, and you’ll have a partnership for life. We all keep busy schedules, and it can be time-consuming to nurture client relationships. But it’s worth it. Carve out time for that this year. Your clients deserve that commitment from you.

We’re proud of our commitment to partnership at Zelis. Whether it’s managing high-cost claims or finding additional ways to lower costs and reduce administrative burdens, our team is here to help. Connect with us today to get started.

If you would like a copy of the KLAS Payment Accuracy & Integrity Solutions 2023 report, you can download it here.

[i]KLAS Payment Accuracy & Integrity Solutions 2023. Page 9.

[ii] KLAS Payment Accuracy & Integrity Solutions 2023.