Q&A: Looking Inside the Organization to Grow Customer Loyalty

Shawn Siegel

Gail Smith, CCO for MetroPlus Health Plan, joined Call Center IQ’s Shawn Siegel to discuss strategies for boosting customer loyalty.

Smith will deliver the keynote "Enhancing Customer Loyalty By Providing Value-Added Service" at the 8thCall Center Summit. Time is running out to register – the event is now less than two weeks away!


Shawn Siegel, Call Center IQ: Can you discuss some of the successes you’ve had enhancing customer loyalty at MetroPlus Health Plan?

Gail Smith, MetroPlus Health Plan: The implementation of the Member Advisory Committee (MAC) and the Medicare Member Touch Campaign have been great successes towards enhancing customer loyalty/member retention at MetroPlus. The MAC meetings, held quarterly, provide our members the opportunity to meet with MetroPlus senior management, including the CEO, CMO, and CCO. Members hear updates about the plan, discuss new initiatives, provide feedback to senior management about their customer experiences with providers, and ways to improve operations. They also give recommendations for articles for the member newsletter. Transportation, lunch and giveaways are provided.

The Medicare Touch Campaigns have allowed us to meet face-to-face with Medicare beneficiaries to go over their benefits, assist them with issues, provide flu shots (when applicable), assist with obtaining other services, e.g., Meals on Wheels, MetroCards for seniors, pharmacy vendors, etc. Seniors love to socialize. This is a great opportunity to do so. We serve breakfast and lunch and have giveaways. MetroCards or other transportation is provided.

Siegel: In your 15+ years at MetroPlus, has technology fundamentally changed the way you handle customer care?

Smith: The changing technology has not had much of an impact on our operations as yet. We do use Facebook, and our members can e-mail us or use the IVR for services.

Siegel: How do you go about representing customer service efforts to your organization’s board of directors?

Siegel: As the Chief Customer Officer (CCO), I attend/participate in all board meetings including the quarterly committee meetings. One of the committee meetings held quarterly is the Customer Services and Marketing Committee where I provide updates to the board on customer service related issues. The two other committee meetings are Quality Management and Finance.

Siegel: Looking forward, what excites you about your future with MetroPlus?

Smith: We are looking forward to participating in the New York Health Insurance Benefit Exchange, and are currently accessing our readiness for it.