How BlueCross Is Meeting Customer Needs

April 13, 2023

Last year BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina brought in Kelly Wage to lead its Consumer Experience and Market Solutions (CE+MS) department. Wage oversees a diverse team that provides solutions for members and employer groups. 

“We are a little like a pit crew in motor racing. It is a great analogy for the work we do. How well we execute as a team can make the difference between getting a checkered flag and losing the race,” she says. 

The CE+MS team is responsible for digital experience, member experience and marketing. It also oversees more than 20 products, programs and services offered to members. This includes well-being programs and telehealth. The team also focuses on employee engagement. 

“All of these areas need to be aligned and in lockstep to ensure we deliver the best member experience. That starts with giving our business partners the solutions and information they need to meet their business objectives,” Wage says. 

Here’s what Wage is focused on and how her team plans to meet the needs of BlueCross members and employers. 

Kelly wage Hover image

What are your priorities this year? 

The last few years have been a whirlwind of activity. The product teams have been in reaction mode. I’d like to get in front of delivery and provide strategic services for all products, programs and solutions we offer. On the digital front our capabilities continue to expand, yet the acceleration of technology will force us to think differently. We will also continue to expand and mature consumer experience solutions across the organization. When I joined BlueCross, there was an initiative linking employee satisfaction member satisfaction. I love this idea and we’ll be implementing several pilot programs this year.    

How will data and analytics help? 

We look at what is happening with customer service and report back on the calls, length of calls, wait times, voice of the customer, and more. We gather information and provide the line of business with recommendations on ways to improve member experience. We can take that a step further and use data to meet other business objectives. For example, we can use data and analytics to close gaps in care, to introduce next best action and in predictive modeling.  

What does your work mean for BlueCross clients? For members? 

Improving the member experience is always our top priority. Health care is complex. We’ve got to simplify all of it, from finding care to understanding your benefits to coordinating care. Engaging members is an opportunity. That’s where working with our group clients and providers is so important. The more we align as a team, the better the member experience.

What role do employers play in this work? 

We need members to be informed. BlueCross offers a large number of programs and services focused on well-being and managing health conditions, however the challenge is engagement. This is where working with our clients and groups is so vital. We need their help with communication and education. 


Advancing the well-being of our members is closely aligned with the need for affordable health care. It all comes back to cost. Depending on the situation, changing behavior, or having easier access to care may result in a healthier individual. That lowers cost and everyone wins. 

How would you describe BlueCross’ approach to consumer experience?

It’s now an old adage, but we want to meet members where they are: right care, right time, right place. I would add right technology. We have to be ready in an omnichannel environment for any situation and we have to make it easy. Comparing the health care experience to an Amazon shopping experience is a bit unrealistic. But it does highlight the need to simplify.

How is BlueCross offering members the ‘right technology’? 

We want a member to connect with us easily using whichever communication channel they prefer. If you are not comfortable with technology, you can call us. If you don’t want to talk to someone, there is an app. No matter where a member is, we are ready the moment he or she needs us, however he or she wants to interact. 

What sets BlueCross apart from other health insurance?  

I have worked with three different Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans. What makes Blue Cross Blue Shield unique is that we are a national association of 34 independent, community-based companies. Being independent and community-based lets us serve our local communities in a very real way. At the same time, we can offer national solutions that serve members no matter where they are.  

What do you think is the future of consumer experience in health care? 

What I see is that health care is personal. The need for in-person care will never go away. However, the use of technology will continue to increase, changing both how and where we get care. Your smartphone is already an entry point to find care, make appointments, talk with care teams, learn about benefits, access your ID card and do just about anything else you can think of. Apps will gather and send your health data to your doctor. In-home care will grow. It’s an exciting time to be in health care!

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