Dentist’s revenue jumps with one simple process change

Jun 20, 2016

Amanda started a modern and progressive dental surgery three years ago. She had grown the business from nothing, reaching breakeven quickly through word of mouth and then moving into profitability. But she felt there was so much more potential in her business. When her accountant suggested they sit down to talk through how she might grow her revenue further, she was all ears.

During the course of the discussion, the accountant asked Amanda some questions around the make-up of her firm’s revenue, specifically:

  1. How many active patients did she have?
  2. How many times a year did they visit her?
  3. What was the average transaction value?

Amanda was able to find out the answers to numbers 1 and 3 from her practice management and billing system and her accountant helped her work out the answer to number 2 (number of visits per year). Amanda was shocked to discover the answer was 1.3. The reason for her surprise was her policy with her patients was to encourage them to come in for a check-up twice a year.

Together, they walked through the process that was supposed to ensure that happened. They observed the receptionist working with patients as they left their appointments and in doing so, they heard the following:

“So we’ll send you a reminder when you’re due for your next appointment.”

That process sounds all well and good on paper, but it relies on three things to secure a second appointment in a 12 month period:

  1. The dentist’s system being reliable enough to send out the reminder
  2. The dentist’s team following up the reminder with a phone call
  3. The patient accepting and booking in the appointment.

With that in mind, the accountant and dentist came up with a simple solution. During the payment process, immediately after an appointment and with the patient feeling good about having healthy teeth and gums, the receptionist simply said:

“Let me book in your next appointment for you right now.”

They tracked the results and 85% of patients booked in a second appointment for six months’ time on the spot!

As you would expect, revenue jumped significantly as a result of understanding the numbers. This is where we can help you – get in touch if you’d like to see how this works for you.