Large Employers Market Research for Physicians’ Group Growth

Organizational Overview

The physicians’ group is a multi-specialty physician practice, including family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, women’s health, orthopedics, podiatry, sleep medicine and hospitalists, with office locations throughout central Florida.

Business Challenge

This company needed a strategic plan to sustain growth in a rapidly changing marketplace. In support of this initiative, they wanted to develop and deploy a plan to penetrate large local employers and their employees to choose physicians, be the healthcare brand-of-choice, and increase corporate visibility within these organizations. To inform the efforts, the organization needed market research from both internal and external audiences. Success in this endeavor would leverage the corporate brand, strengthen its local reputation through helping companies reduce their healthcare costs, and increase its own reimbursement rates to offset the operating costs of its physicians.

JRG Solution and Implementation

J. Robinson Group recommended qualitative research both internally with key employees in the physicians’ group, and also with large employers in central Florida.

The first initiative was a series of employee focus groups within the physicians’ organization, including all departments and levels. The purpose was to assess what features and benefits they believed that large local employers desired, identify new services that could be offered, and identify service gaps that may need focus and attention prior to launching any marketing initiative. In addition to gaining a better understanding of the opportunities within the organization, this effort also created advocates and ambassadors for the new initiatives. Three informal focus groups with employees, segregated by the types of job responsibilities (physicians, nurses, office management) were held. JRG developed both the recruitment script and the facilitation guides for each group and managed the entire recruiting/scheduling/facilitation/follow-up processes.

Following the internal research, JRG reviewed both the Orlando Business Journal and the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission lists of large employers to select organizations appropriate for the qualitative research. This research would be in the form of focused one-to-one interviews. The purpose of these interviews was to identify key service attributes that were highly desired by healthcare benefit providers and to identify industry best practices for increasing employee awareness and pinpointing key employee preferences and/or influences when selecting a physician.

J. Robinson Group scheduled appointments with human resources professionals (primarily Benefits Managers) of 10 large local employers, representing both public and private enterprises. The interviewees had been in the human resources field for most of their careers, and most had been in the benefits arena for a significant period of time. The employers included two school districts, two local government entities, two governmental agencies, one private nonprofit, and three commercial organizations, representing in total about 75,000 employees in the area. Interviews lasting approximately 60 minutes each were conducted. J. Robinson Group planned and implemented the entire recruiting/scheduling/interviewing/follow-up processes.

Results and Outcomes

The internal groups and large employers identified a number of key issues and opportunities, including:

  • The aggressive pursuit of health and wellness programs (with attendant ROI)
  • Patient access, including convenience of office locations, patient wait times and hours of operation
  • Deductibles and co-pays, with organizations beginning to offer a number of choices
  • Health risk assessments
  • Requirements for employee physical checkups/exams
  • Cost containment efforts
  • Pursuit of the “medical home” concept

The results of the research provided rich information and strong direction to support specific areas and goals of the resulting strategic plan for the physicians’ group. View Media and Digital Campaign Details