3 Key Components of Successful Practice Operations

Tuesdays with TransitionsHow does your practice fare when it comes to hygiene retention, filling your schedule and setting production goals?  There are 3 key components that require consistent monitoring, with an awareness of what to look for and how to find the correct information.  The 3 key components of your operations that have an impact on your practice operating at peak efficiency are:

Ideally, at least 80 percent of your patients will attend their recommended hygiene visits. Do you know the current percentage for your practice? It’s common that many dentists are not aware that their patient base is deteriorating as ever greater numbers slip through the cracks.

It is, therefore, crucial to let none of your patients leave without their next visit being scheduled. While it is not a guarantee that they’ll show up at the appointed time (more on that in a moment), but it’s a vital first step. If fewer than 90 percent of your patients are departing without booking their next visit, you’ll start to see that retention number sag.  It sounds simple, however you will be surprised at how often things slip through in a practice.

One of the biggest challenges any practice faces is how to get away from merely “filling the white space” in the appointment book and instead engineer each day with an eye towards variety, reduced staff fatigue, good patient flow and consistent production.

The benefits of good scheduling are legion: It offers a road map for each subsequent day, week and month. You’ll be able to see fewer patients, yet do more dentistry per patient. It reduces stress, shows your patients you respect their time and even makes dealing with last-minute emergency care much easier.

Say your practice’s financial need is $50,000 a month and you wish to practice four days a week. That’s $3,125 a day. Add 25 percent to that (roughly $800 in this case) to give yourself a cushion. That’s  $3,925 is your daily production goal.

Then, work with your staff to engineer 16 days a month to get you there. Doing so will help coordinate your scheduling and ensure you’re not just randomly booking patients into oddball slots.

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