Appointment cancellations and problems are an unavoidable part of running a clinic. There are so many variables that a clinic can not control: traffic, delayed meetings, bad memory recall, or alarms/calendar notifications that never went off. These factors affect the appointment, delaying everyone else’s sessions.

Scheduling hiccups can lead to a decrease in office efficiency and customer satisfaction. Appointment scheduling is one of the most common tasks among practices, yet efficient scheduling is very difficult to achieve.

With late arrivals to emergency cases, there are a lot of things that can throw the day’s schedule off. It is important to remember that  you cannot eliminate scheduling problems, no system is ever perfect. However, there are several things you can do to reduce scheduling hiccups. Most solutions to scheduling problems are automation-based, they help in optimizing repetitive tasks and improve a patient’s experiences and free up staff from mundane tasks.

 

Reminders and Confirmations

Between work, chores, and everything in between, it becomes difficult for patients to keep track of all their appointments. With a thousand things going on, patients can forget about their health appointments, or they realize that they have one after it’s too late.

Many clinics choose to ‘remind’ patients of their appointments, a few use confirmation messages. Confirmation messages are a great way to get the patient to affirm that they will make it to their session. Confirmation messages also allow the patient to reschedule it if they are busy ‌or if there are any changes to be made to the treatment.

Reminders can serve as a “count down” till the appointment time. They are especially necessary an hour or two before the appointment time, to remind the patient of the session. Reminders and confirmation messages, when sent manually, can be incredibly time-consuming. Your staff will have to track each patient’s appointment and create a reminder plan.

A task that can take several work hours from several staff members can be done in a few seconds with no hassle. Automating reminders and confirmation messages is a process that you can easily automate. 

Read More: 11 Ideas: How to Get More Patients in Your Dental Practice?

 

Front Desk Optimization

The front desk is the go-to place for your clinic. It is where patients will go to book appointments, ask for information about treatment and payment options. It’s no surprise that the front desk is the busiest spot in the clinic. So, optimizing front desk procedures is one of the best ways to streamline the clinic. It is one of the biggest areas that can use automation to make things more efficient and simpler.

The staff at the front desk have to assign priority, make calls for confirmation of appointments, create checklists, track appointment statuses, schedule appointments, and they have to do everything by hand.  You can automate these tasks to a certain degree to free up staff to take on other work around the clinic. Having systems in place that allow your staff to complete tasks within a few seconds would increase office efficiency.

Read More: 6 Must Have Features In Your Healthcare Practice Website

 

Track Your Bookings

Tracking appointments and treatment plans for each patient is a demanding task, at the least, and challenging. Manually entering and keeping track of patients is a cumbersome process that you can make so much easier.

You can schedule all your appointments by using software that is geared towards increasing clinic efficiency. You can have your patients book their appointments online and fill in the ‌information. 

Read More: 5 Proven Tips to Increase Productivity at a Dental Office

 

Use GrowthPlug

GrowthPlug is a SaaS that is healthcare-centric with solutions for scheduling problems, acquisition of new patients, and automation, to name a few. It is an optimization platform that aids in streamlining and simplifying front desk operations, using content management systems to establish an online presence. 

 

The platform also provides services such as:

Scheduling solutions

Manual scheduling is a practice that is decades old and something that can easily be replaced with a more efficient method: online appointment scheduling tools. They are easy to use and do not require a bored and stressed staff member to pencil in patient information. With the online scheduling tool provided by GrowthPlug, patients can schedule appointments without having to call the clinic and they can also fill in patient information on the go.

Read More: Top 3 Metrics for Dentists to Help Prevail In Turbulent Times

 

Front desk operations

Managing patients has never been easier. The scheduling software, powerful analytics, and patient engagement provided by GrowthPlug allow you to optimize time-consuming and repetitive tasks. Automating certain processes will enhance the healthcare experience for your patients and staff.

Read More: 6 Must-Read Dental Magazines in 2022

 

Optimize growth drivers

Scaling a business is a decision that takes a lot of research and resources, however, the primary deciding factor of such a decision is the growth of the business. GrowthPlug tracks metrics across platforms to identify trends and patterns on your website, blog, and campaigns. It analyzes these metrics to optimize search engine rankings and boost reach on social media accounts.

Read More: 10 Social Media Marketing Ideas for Dentists

 

SEO optimization

One method to foster trust in your organization and increase traffic to your clinic is to optimize your website so that it ranks higher in search engine results. Ranking up on the results will increase the visibility of your clinic online and make it easier to find. This‌ improves your chances of converting a viewer into a customer.

Read More: 5 Outstanding Local SEO Tips for Dentists

 

Collection and selection of patient reviews

According to Statista, 36% of internet users read online reviews before they buy a product and it takes about 4-6 reviews to build trust. The same stands for services, healthcare, or otherwise. Having testimonials will boost trust in the organization and attract new customers.

Learn 15+ powerful ways to drive more patients and positive reviews to your dental practice. Download your free guide today.

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