14 Jan 5 Tips for Investing in Office Technology
If your dental practice hasn’t upgraded to a digital workflow, it would be wise to take a look at the many benefits of doing so. If you have already adapted or plan to do so, you may be uncertain of the next steps… and who could blame you? There is no shortage of new office technology, with an even greater number of manufacturers and silver-tongued salespeople. Sometimes it can be hard to know where to begin. The purpose of this guide is to provide clarity regarding the ins and outs of this very worthwhile investment.
1. Is It Manageable?
The number one question you should ask yourself before putting your money on the line is whether or not you can swing it. Is it in the budget, or are there proven systems in place to justify a hefty loan? It’s important to remember that a good investment will pay for itself by its very nature, but it won’t happen overnight. Will your practice be able to manage in the interim between making the purchase and achieving return on investment?
2. Research, Research, Research
One universal hallmark of a sound investment is due diligence. If you are ever approached by a salesperson, make sure to take note of the make and model(s) of the products they’re selling, along with a business card. Politely tell them you’ll think it over and stay in touch; don’t put anything in writing right off the bat. Compare their product(s) with those of competitors and leave no stone unturned. Compare and contrast specs, cost, reviews, videos, testimonials and any other product-related information available online.
3. Deal Only with Reputable Manufacturers
In the vein of #2, researching the manufacturer is just as important as researching the product. Take a look at the company’s track record. How long has it been around? Does it have offices globally? Also pay attention to how closely it stands by its product and how willing it is to keep in touch with you. Offering on-site training, a comprehensive warranty and continuing education opportunities are usually signs of a reputable company.
4. Keep Longevity in Mind
When investing sizeable sums into new tech, it’s critical to put your revenue into something that will maintain its value long enough to provide ROI. Stay abreast of what technologies are being phased out and replaced across the board. Consider the transition from the spittoon to the suction system. When did you notice the change and when was it implemented by your office?
5. Focus on Patient Experience
In the age of extreme dental competition, generating positive reviews and word-of-mouth referrals are integral in helping a practice generate new appointments from fickle prospects. Positive patient experiences resulting from office technologies keep appointments full and new patients coming through the door, leading to new revenue and a healthy ROI. Think about the patient experience from start to finish. Online booking software may help them easily book an appointment after hours while a cone beam CT scanner can help expedite their visit with more comprehensive diagnostics than traditional x-rays.