Heritage Engages Consultant As “Secret Shopper” in Continuous Improvement Effort

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Heritage Engages Consultant As “Secret Shopper” in Continuous Improvement Effort

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This year has been an exceptional year for Heritage in terms of referrals. We have been serving families for nearly 35 years. Within the past 2-3 years Heritage started to more effectively tell the story of our exceptional, tenured staff and the clinical sophistication of our Peers and Elevate Academies. These efforts resulted in a substantial increase in national recognition, referrals and referral sources.

A cultural cornerstone at Heritage includes continuous improvement by all employees and in being a “learning organization”. Our staff believes  there is always room for improvement. To assist us in recognizing areas for improvement and avoiding blind spots, Heritage actively seeks third party opinions. For example, we recently engaged a “secret shopper”; someone who acts as a parent considering Heritage for their son or daughter. We wanted them to experience the entire admissions process, learn all they could about Heritage and provide feedback about their experience.

While having lunch with an educational consultant from Boston earlier in the year and listening to her story, it became apparent she would be the perfect “secret shopper”.  She has been consulting for several years. Additionally, though, her son was in a residential treatment program a few years ago. Hindsight is always 20/20 vision and we wanted this exceptional hindsight to give us unfiltered feedback. This consultant quickly caught our vision of what we were trying to do. In an effort to help us to better help families, she eagerly agreed to participate.

In cognito, our consultant called our admissions team, planned a visit to Heritage, toured our beautiful campus and then sat down with our executive team to share her experiences. Her candidness made this effort a tremendous success. We learned what impressed her and what will help us improve as an organization. Her suggestions will help us improve both the admissions process and our clinical programs.

We will continue to strategically employ this “secret shopper” process in our effort to continuously improve, to gain a larger perspective from parents and professionals. It demonstrates Heritage’s bedrock commitment to being a world-class residential treatment center and therapeutic boarding school for adolescents.

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