Dental offices provide a platform for deep, professional interactions among dental temps, leaders, and patients. The quality and richness of these interactions regarding work culture, values, and dental procedures determine the degree of success. Identifying and improving every aspect of these factors is crucial for every dental office.
Running a dental practice requires intensive management, policies, and procedures. Often, dentists are overworked and understaffed. So, how can they improve their dentist-to-patient experience?
Time to Invest in Your Team
According to an IBM study, employees are 12 times more likely to leave a firm if they don’t feel like they are progressing inside it. Businesses frequently view employer training as an expense rather than an investment, resulting in low productivity and voluntary resignations. Research shows that training expenses for new recruits are significantly more than teaching existing employees. Therefore, offering career progression opportunities for dental temps can establish a successful and smooth dental practice. Rehiring charges account for about 12% of a company’s costs and can reach up to 40% for organizations with significant turnover rates.
Running a dental office requires professional training and ongoing education. Properly training employees can help maximize patient interactions, whether in person or over the phone. A top-notch dental front desk training program can uplift a team, helping them schedule more appointments and boost patient happiness.
Redefining the Patient Experience Through Easy Scheduling
A study published in 2018 reported that almost 50% of patients were late for their dental appointments. Most participants depended on their memory to keep track of their appointments, leading to forgetfulness as a common factor in missed bookings.
It is in a dentist and patient’s best interest to simplify the process of seeking oral care, starting with how patients schedule appointments. Online booking makes it easier for patients to make appointments without having to call a dental office. By identifying a patient’s preferred means of communication, dentists can notify them more regularly about upcoming follow-ups, leading to a reduction in cancellations and delays.
Treat Now, Pay Later: Patient’s Financial Flexibility
One of the most important steps is to inform patients of the procedure’s cost. This can leave them with a positive, up-front experience, explaining why a patient requires a particular treatment and providing a detailed breakdown of the associated expenses.
It is crucial to offer flexible payment options for customers seeking oral care to ease any worry and encourage them to proceed with the procedure. Some patients might prefer to make monthly payments on their medical expenditures, while others may prefer to pay in full. It is beneficial to introduce third-party financing programs that provide dental patients with options to reduce interest costs or monthly fees depending on their financial status. Long-term financing alternatives might be a more attractive option for patients with higher dental costs.
To encourage customers to accept treatment recommendations and return for follow-up dental care, dental offices need to expand their available payment options. Debit and credit cards, personal checks, cash, and special financing are practical payment options, and each can work with most insurance plans. By implementing more options, dental practices ensure that personal financial situations do not influence a patient’s decision to seek regular dental care.
Transform Your Dental Office Ambiance
Office culture is not only influenced by the people in it but the physical environment, including furniture and workspace. Operational excellence and ambiance can increase mood and productivity. These practices attract top-tier talent for employment and keep patients coming back whenever they need help. Dental care environments can be improved with modern technology, furniture, and décor, which in turn can influence an outstanding work culture and customer service.
Nothing compares to a word-of-mouth referral to expand a client base. A patient may decide to switch dental offices due to a reliable referral from a friend, relative, coworker, or even internet reviews. Dental practices can give out referral cards in person, offer unique bonuses for new patients, and provide patient feedback forms and surveys online. Dental temps can also be offered incentives to expand the practice through extended employee discounts. Regardless of which referral strategy is chosen, it is essential for a dental practice to make good on its promise and follow through.
By following these tips, your dental practice can demonstrate its commitment to improving careers, benefiting practices through enhanced customer experiences, and making dental temps more adept at their jobs.
Dr. James Younger graduated from Dentistry at University of Toronto in 1999. Since then has been in private practice, providing a full scope of care, including implants and bone/sinus grafting. In April 2015, James was inspired by the idea of improving hygiene temping through modern mobile technology and thus TempStars was born. TempStars now makes it fast, easy and stress-free for dental offices to find a good hygienist quickly, and allows hygienists to live a busy, flexible and empowered professional life.