Create A Waiting Room Your Patients Love (Part One)
Transform your waiting room through quality furniture and its arrangement to cultivate a space that your patients love!
Waiting rooms are notorious for being sterile and uninviting and when you’re sitting in uncomfortable furniture, reading dated magazines, and breathing in that weird waiting room smell, it doesn’t rank highly on things you want to be doing that day!
But, it doesn’t have to be this way. You’re one step closer to revolutionizing the patient waiting room experience!
At LUi Plus, we make purchasing and implementing commercial furniture in your waiting room functional, appealing, and affordable! Be that office that goes the extra mile and dive into ways you can create a waiting room that your patients love!
Your Waiting Room Sets The Tone
Your waiting room is the first impression your patient gets. It’s like a first date or a new book club — if you don’t connect, they’re toast — and client retention is probably a high priority to your business model.
So, solidify the first impression and show your patients how much you care and how invested you are — this begins with a well-arranged and thoughtful waiting room.
You know what’s terrible? A patient who can’t escape their neighbor playing a game on full sound or the awkward person who can’t take social cues and stop engaging in conversation with you.
Create a better waiting room!
How do you cultivate a waiting room your patients will love? Let’s get right to it!
Know the movement.
You know your waiting room the best, so it’s important to first identify how and where the traffic flows. Does it get congested in the busy hours and do people have enough room to sit and spread out (because who really likes to sit directly next to someone they don’t know)?
Begin with the basics, which include:
Clearly mark entrances and exits – The most awkward thing can be walking into a waiting room and not knowing where you’re supposed to go. Or, has the staff told you how to exit and then leave you high and dry trying to figure your way out of the maze? Clearly mark and make signs for everything!
Avoid bottlenecks – Lines can be offputting — especially when people tend to stand too close when you’re talking sensitive information — so, try and leave enough space where people don’t have to wait in line. Make your front desk highly visible so people can come and go as they need — this is an ideal way to forego lines.
Select the right furniture.
The furniture is what makes or breaks the waiting room experience, truly! This is what patients first see and it’s what they spend their precious time waiting in, so be kind! Not only should your waiting room furniture be clean and inviting, but it should also be comfortable!
Important things to consider include:
- Placing your front desk in a highly visible area
- Leaving enough space for patients to walkabout
- Finding the perfect arrangement of waiting room seating (more about this below)
Get into the waiting room seating details!
This may be the most crucial piece to creating a waiting room that your patients love! It’s all in the seating arrangement!
Unfortunately, you can’t just haphazardly place furniture in your waiting room, you have to be more intentional about the placement.
It begins with measurements. Measure the space you have and compare that with the size of the waiting room furniture you have in mind. If you’re ordering from an online commercial furniture retailer, try and find a similarly sized piece so you can physically see what it will look like in your office.
What type of seating pattern do you want to create? There are many different layouts such as U-shaped, where the patients can face the front desk, or placing chairs back-to-back in a couple of rows. Below are a few more things to consider about your waiting room seating.
Is the seating comfortable? When you have to sit uncomfortably this can make a five or 10-minute wait seem like an eternity, so test out the furniture and see if it passes the test.
Consider your patients. Every patient is different and you need to consider that. Consider their age, size, and mobility — these factors determine what kind of seating you may need. From larger chairs to seating they are able to get in and out of easily.
What fabric fits best? Believe or not, the upholstery can make a huge impact. Vinyl fabrics are the standard in high-traffic waiting rooms because they can be cleaned and disinfected easily, but they’re not the most aesthetic.
If you opt for more of an aesthetic fabric material, choose a tighter weave because they tend to be more durable. A tighter weave also makes upkeep a little easier, but spills and general wear and tear happens a little faster with fabric material.
A waiting room says so much about your business and what you’re willing to invest in the patient experience! Be the difference and distinguish yourself with a waiting room that is as inviting as it is comfortable! From identifying the flow of traffic to selecting the right furniture (including the seating!), these small details can transform a patient’s experience.
Are you loving where this is going and curious about more waiting room tips? Stay connected for part two very soon!
For more information about the premier commercial furniture we carry, peruse our inventory online today!