Every business needs systems to run smoothly and efficiently. Have you ever wondered why some practices run like clockwork and everyone is relaxed and happy, and then you have others where you are put on hold or asked to wait for an eternity only to be met by frazzled employees?
Here are my 6 favourite practice management tools to make your workflow and systems work cohesively, and in so doing save you time, effort and reduce stress.
Whether you have a small or large practice, it’s essential to choose the right patient management tools to fit your business needs. There is a growing trend towards cloud-based technology for a good reason. They offer powerful, easy to use and customisable options, that are affordable.
Choosing the right patient management system can be daunting as there are so many options. Take your time to research, ask for recommendations, see if any might be industry-specific, and take advantage of the free trials so you can get a feel if it’s right for your business.
Some of the features to look out for include:
- Ease of use and timely, comprehensive customer support
- Calendar management, patient scheduling and reminder systems
- Manage patient files, case notes and records, referrals and claims
- Inventory management
- Financials, automated billing and invoicing and reporting
- Ability to handle multiple health professionals, rooms and locations
- Integrations with other commonly used software
We’ve all experienced terrible customer service and more often than not, it leads to customers going elsewhere. Your patient’s experience is vital in maintaining their loyalty and ensuring they become a repeat client.
The quality of service extends further than the treatment itself.
- Provide your staff with guidelines and training
- Engage with your customers and focus developing long-lasting relationships.
- Provide value to your customers and exceed expectations.
- Develop personable, timely and efficient communication and workflow systems
- Treat your customers as they are individuals and make them feel special.
- Be responsive to any concerns that may arise.
Keeping track of your financials is essential for any business. If you are still using a paper-based or dated system, it’s definitely time to look into an upgrade. There are some excellent and affordable computer and cloud-based accounting systems available. These will not only improve your workflow efficiency, but they will help standardise all your work processes, automate tasks, improve productivity and efficiency and help you scale your businesses. Speak to your accountant and find something that works for you, whether it’s a part of a practice management software or a standalone service.
Leveraging industry-specific software for appointment booking can mean the difference of your practice running like a well-oiled machine or playing catch up with double bookings, missed appointments and disgruntled patients.
Some of the popular features to look out for include:
- Appointment scheduling
- Client self-service and online appointment booking systems
- Waitlist management
- SMS appointment reminders
- Treatment notes, reports and analytics
- Client and Staff management
- Integrations with other software such as Accounting, CRM (Client Relationship Management), Patient Management Software.
How do you find out if your system is working as intended from a client’s perspective? While everything may look like it’s operating smoothly from the outside, it’s only through feedback that we find out what your patients really think about your practice, your staff and your services.
Patient surveys can quickly be filled out either at the practice on paper, via an electronic device, or through sending a survey to their email address. Electronic surveys are not only accessible, but they allow us to compare and analyse data trends and understand customer needs and behaviour. With the help of web-based software, you can create a professional, user-friendly form in minutes using a range of applications such as Typeform, Google Forms and Survey Monkey.
Social media and online networking for health professionals have significantly evolved over the last few years. Blogs in particular have become an indispensable marketing and patient management tool. They allow your message and brand to reach a broader audience, providing both professional networking opportunities, patient management, care and education, promotion of your practice.
“Whatever you do, do it well. Do it so well that when people see you do it, they will want to come back and see you do it again, and they will want to bring others and show them how well you do what you do.” Walt Disney
“Get the confidence of the public and you will have no difficulty in getting their patronage.” Harry Gordon Selfridge
“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning” Bill Gates
“I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better.” Elon Musk
“We take most of the money that we could have spent on paid advertising and instead put it back into the customer experience. Then we let the customers be our marketing.” Tony Hsieh
“The future of communicating with customers rests in engaging with them through every possible channel: phone, e-mail, chat, Web, and social networks. Customers are discussing a company’s products and brand in real time. Companies need to join the conversation.” Marc Benioff
“An organization’s ability to learn, and translate that learning into action rapidly, is the ultimate competitive advantage” Jack Welch
“Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.” Steve Jobs
There’s nothing more important than our good health – that’s our principal capital asset. Arlen Specter