The definition of a ‘great’ practice is down to the personal preference of the principal or practice owner, as a solutions provider we are not prescriptive about what any given practice should strive for. But we do have some data-led models for setting targets and benchmarking, which can help dentists understand what’s possible and facilitate the creation of a financially sound business that underpins their life choices.
Setting objectives and making these known to the whole team is the starting point for every successful business. Every member of the team should be able to clearly articulate what the practice’s objectives are and furthermore, understand their role in helping achieve them.
Core business targets are generally concerned with finance, such as revenue and UDAs and patient satisfaction, for example the practice’s online reputation, patient referrals and in-practice reviews or FFT completion. But whatever targets are set they should be ambitious but not unrealistic, otherwise this can quickly become demoralising.
Assessing business performance based on gut feeling is simply not good enough when you are trying to maximise the potential in your practice. Using the software tools now available in EXACT V12, principals and managers can regularly track data and understand exactly how their practice is performing.
It’s always important to react to data, as immediate action can help to solve any potential problems. As an example, if one measurement for patient satisfaction is patient referrals, there needs to be a process established by which this data can be captured on a regular basis. The process needs to be understood and followed by every member of the team. Similarly if UDAs are a key metric, they need to be tracked weekly to spot any early issues rather than chased at the end of the financial year.
It’s crucial to get team ‘buy-in’ to the targets set, because only in this way can you create accountability for the success or otherwise of the business. If weekly or monthly targets are occasionally missed then it doesn’t have to be the end of the world; rather the reasons need to be understood so that continuous improvement can transpire and overall targets can still be met. In the same way, there must be rewards when targets are achieved that enable the team to celebrate success together.”
‘Using Your Data to Transform Your Practice Performance’ is a series of free Business Insight Seminars running throughout 2017. Visit softwareofexcellence.com/uk/event/using-your-data-to-transform-your-practice to reserve a place.