New Efforts and Protocol Added to Ensure Company Provides the Best Experience to Every Club Member
SmileDirectClub, the oral care company that created the first direct-to-consumer telehealth platform for teeth straightening, unveiled updates to its customer experience to ensure greater transparency of its procedures for its club members and provide effective training for its team members. The Company conducted a thorough review of its customer experience with the single mission to uphold the company’s commitment to safe, affordable access to care. As a result, the following improvements have been made:
Pre-Screening Requirements: Smile Direct Club is adjusting its customer consent form to ensure customers understand the need to verify that they have visited a dentist within six months of starting treatment with SmileDirectClub and have not reported any pain or other clinical concerns specific to their oral health. A prior visit to a dentist is an important part of any good oral health program, and has always been a requirement to begin treatment with SmileDirectClub.
SmileShop Training: SmileShop team members have received additional training to ensure consistent, clear and effective communication with customers regarding teledentistry and SmileDirectClub’s consent form. Although many of SmileDirectClub’s SmileGuides are dental assistants and hygienists, when they are in the SmileShops they are not engaged in that capacity, do not practice dentistry and are not able to answer clinical questions about clear aligner therapy or treatment plans. SmileGuides provide general information about SmileDirectClub and its teledentistry platform and the SmilePay program, as well as gather patient information for subsequent review, assessment and diagnosis by one of the more than 250 dentists and orthodontists in the affiliated doctor network. Should customers wish to speak to a dentist or orthodontist in the network, SmileGuides may provide information on how to do so. This training is being rolled out across all shops, and is a mandatory part of the onboarding process for all new SmileShop team members.
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Communication with Treatment Team and Doctors: Since its founding, every Smile Direct Club customer’s treatment is prescribed and overseen by a dentist or orthodontist licensed to practice in the state of the customer. Each customer will receive the name and contact information of their treating dentist or orthodontist, upon the approval of the treatment plan, making staying connected throughout treatment simple. In addition, Smile Direct Club will provide a dedicated email and phone number for any customer who wishes to speak with an affiliated dentist or orthodontist prior to starting their smile journey.
Simplified Refunds: SmileDirectClub is improving its refund timelines and making its refund policy clearer. SmileDirectClub’s Smile Guarantee continues to offer a full refund without questions or conditions for any reason within 30 days of receiving aligners. Customers who seek a refund outside of the Smile Guarantee window may receive a partial refund for any unused aligners. SmileDirectClub’s customer service team will continue to work with any customer to offer additional refinements or referral to a brick and mortar practice for follow-up.
Automating Manufacturing: The Company has automated its manufacturing lines to significantly reduce delivery and shipping timelines for both new orders and mid-course corrections and retainers. While SmileDirectClub has a 95% satisfaction rate, the company has grown quickly and that has resulted in complaints from customers regarding shipping time. The shift to automated manufacturing is intended to address this concern and SmileDirectClub has made significant progress in reducing shipping time. Later this year, the company will expand its manufacturing capabilities with the opening of its second facility in Kyle, Texas which will reduce shipping time even further.
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Insurance Coverage: SmileDirectClub’s clear aligner therapy is already offered in-network for adult orthodontia treatment in some corporate plans provided by United Healthcare and Aetna. SmileDirectClub is committed to expanding access to affordable, premium oral care products and will continue to seek additional network partners to join in this mission. Additionally, customers may use HSA and FSA funds to purchase clear aligner therapy through SmileDirectClub.
“We are a mission-driven, customer-first business, and we are taking every step necessary to ensure that all of our club members receive the care and experience they deserve,” said David Katzman, Chief Executive Officer, SmileDirectClub. “As the leader in the teledentistry space, we are constantly evaluating our processes and listening to all feedback in order to ensure our customers receive a positive experience that delivers on our mission to provide affordable, convenient access to care. In a time when the convenience and safety of telehealth is increasingly critical, we are focused on ensuring a safe and effective option for consumers.”
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