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improve waiting room experience

The Ultimate Waiting Room Checklist for 2020 [PDF]

Waiting room experience is one of the most important parts of the customer journey. It does not matter how perfect your service is, if the visitor has experienced a badly organized waiting line, they might connect the entire experience with that negative occurrence.

The good news is that you can use the waiting area to your advantage. Combine good service with a high-quality waiting experience, and you got yourself satisfied visitors that are more likely to not only visit your location again but also recommend it to their friends and family.

That is why we decided to compile a list of best tips on how to make your waiting area as enjoyable and comfortable for your customers as possible.

Improve your waiting room experience: 65+ tips and best practices

To ensure high quality, this checklist will follow the concept of the Customer Experience Pyramid, which consists of 3 parts:

  1. Useful – meeting the needs of your customers while delivering the value.
  2. Easy – simplifying the process of interacting with your business for a customer.
  3. Fun – providing enjoyable experiences that will evoke positive emotions.

You can download the waiting room experience checklist in a PDF format, so that you can print it out and always have a waiting room guide handy.

Not a fan of printout materials? Read on, we will cover the entire PDF below.

Useful improvements to waiting room experience

Let’s start the checklist with things that should meet the needs of our customers. These things are essential for providing a high-quality visitor experience.

Improve wait room experience with queuing

Effective and stress-free queuing is crucial to set the right atmosphere for your visitors from the very beginning. A negative experience due to queuing will follow visitors throughout their whole journey at your service location.

✔️ 1. Substitute outdated pen and paper sheets

✔️ 2. Give up take-a-ticket machines for improved visitor experience

✔️ 3. Implement digital queue management

✔️ 4. Consider self-service kiosks for faster service

✔️ 5. Serve visitors by their name for personal service

✔️ 6. Show queuing status on a screen for less waiting anxiety

✔️ 7. Consider adding SMS-notification so your visitors can roam the area

✔️ 8. Make sure the queuing status is seen by everyone throughout the whole waiting area

✔️ 9. Record the visitor history details for improving the service

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Improve wait room experience with furniture

Appropriate furniture is important for providing the comfort for your visitors while they wait. Your customers don’t expect high-class seating but comfortable chairs with soft seats should be a requisite.

✔️ 10. Chairs with soft seats and arms for increased comfort

✔️ 11. Joined seats for family groupings and social interactions

✔️ 12. Separated chairs for more personal space

Achieve safe wait room experience

Safety at your location is important not only for your visitors but also for your employees. It’s your responsibility and duty to guarantee a safe environment.

✔️ 13. Portable fire extinguishers

✔️ 14. Emergency evacuation plans

✔️ 15. Warning signs (wet floor, do not enter, video surveillance, etc.)

✔️ 16. First aid kit

✔️ 17. Exit signs (well-lit)

✔️ 18. Well-grounded electrical systems

✔️ 19. Fire detection systems

Keep waiting rooms clean for superior experience

Maintaining a clean area is vital for a positive impression. The research shows that visitors connect the quality of the service with the cleanliness of the location.

✔️ 20. Empty wastebaskets daily

✔️ 21. Sort waste for easier recycling

✔️ 22. Vacuum and mop the floors daily

✔️ 23. Sanitize the area with the most footfall

✔️ 24. Clean the furniture weekly

✔️ 25. Remove dust and debris from beverage and snack area

Air and ventilation as key to waiting room experience

Poor air quality can cause headaches, fatigue and other negative effects in your visitors. This threat increases with the number of people in the area. Guaranteeing fresh air is important for your visitors’ well-being.

✔️ 26. Have a proper ventilation system for a higher quality air

✔️ 27. Aerate the space by letting in the natural air (if possible)

✔️ 28. Introduce plants for decreased carbon dioxide levels and better air quality.

✔️ 29. Use humidifiers/dehumidifiers to prevent unhealthy air bacteria and respiratory problems

✔️ 30. Keep humidity levels at 30-50%

Making waiting room experience easy

Once all the necessary things are implemented for a quality waiting experience, we should move to simplifying the steps that your visitors need to undergo when visiting your waiting area.

Provide clear signage for visitors

Well-placed signage will decrease the number of confused visitors while guaranteeing a smooth journey from their point of entry at your location until the point of destination.

✔️ 30. Place signs at the visitor entrance points

✔️ 31. Identify other high traffic areas

✔️ 32. Continue placing the signage until the end of the visitor journey

✔️ 33. Use an eye-catching, colorful background for increased visibility

✔️ 34. Contrast the text from background for easier readability

✔️ 35. Use arrows for simplified navigation

✔️ 36. Consider the visitor’s vision area when placing the signage

✔️ 37. Use simple language and be economical with the text

✔️ 38. Make sure that there are no information gaps in the customer journey

Accessibility

Ensuring that your location is reachable by all persons, regardless of disabilities, is important and helps your business be seen in a positive light.

✔️ 39. Allocate dedicated parking space for people with special needs

✔️ 40. Identify the dedicated parking spots with the International Symbol of Access

✔️ 41. Make sure that at least one entrance at your location is accessible to a wheelchair user

✔️ 42. Test the customer journey in a wheelchair to make sure that disabled visitors can easily access everything

✔️ 43. All the gadgets, refreshments, merchandise, etc. in your waiting area should be accessible to visitors with disabilities

✔️ 44. Ensure that pathways are wide enough for people with a wheelchair to pass

Making waiting room experience fun

When our visitors have all the useful things for their waiting experience and their journey is intuitive and simple, we can start creating an experience that brings positive emotions.

Offer beverages for enhanced experience

Drinks like water and hot beverages are not a must, not a bonus. A cup of coffee/tea is something that your visitors already expect from you.

✔️ 45. Water cooler with hot/cold water

✔️ 46. Coffee with options of different additions (milk, sugar, cinnamon, etc.)

✔️ 47. Different choices of tea (green, black, fruit)

✔️ 48. Cups (ideally eco-friendly)

✔️ 49. Napkins

When it comes to hot beverages like coffee or tea, you should consider the type of your location. If it is a dental clinic, your visitors might not appreciate your effort.

Improve visitor experience with entertainment

This is the best opportunity to utilize your customer’s idleness and promote the information you want to them.

✔️ 50. Provide a high-speed internet connection in the waiting room

✔️ 51. Ensure that a good internet connection is available in every part of the waiting area

✔️ 52. Install multiple power sockets

✔️ 53. Place power sockets next to seats

✔️ 54. Consider in-seat power supply for increased comfort

✔️ 55. Consider extra TV screens with advertisements and tutorials

Ensure correct lighting

Lighting is a strong influence on the mood of your visitors. Just by its placement and color tone, you can change the feel of your waiting area.

✔️ 56. Provide soft and bright lighting for a calm ambiance

✔️ 57. Equip the area with warm and low light for more pleasant and relaxing atmosphere

✔️ 58. Consider cool-white lighting to keep visitors concentrated, active and energized

Create an enjoyable waiting atmosphere with music

Music has been proven to influence the emotional state. It relaxes your visitors or energizes them. It all depends on the type of music you play at your location — and that depends on what your goal is.

✔️ 59. Put a smooth mix of relaxing music for a laid-back atmosphere

✔️ 60. Put faster and more engaging music for setting more energizing vibe

✔️ 61. Make sure the music is consistent throughout the whole area to avoid disparity

✔️ 62. Set music on reasonable volume so it does not annoy the visitor

Add a children play area

Children get bored quickly. Having a dedicated area with appropriate games and activities will help them pass the time, and make their parents experience more enjoyable too.

✔️ 63. Use soft lighting for a calmer atmosphere

✔️ 64. Interactive toys to keep kids entertained, active and happy

✔️ 65. Decorate children’s play area with warm colors for a welcoming and happier ambiance

✔️ 66. Incorporate soft furniture to reduce the risk of damage

✔️ 67. Introduce extra soft furnishings for noise absorption

✔️ 68. Make children’s area visible from the waiting room

✔️ 69. Consider streaming children’s area on a screen in the waiting room for extra security

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Like the list and want to save it for later? Download the waiting room experience checklist in a PDF format, so that you can print it out and always have a waiting room guide handy.

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