Why We Are Better...
We are consultants, but a client recently said we were really fixers. We start with the premise that your practice is great, and it can only go up from there.
We have a New Approach to Consulting
No one in the dental community disputes that there are some great consulting companies out there. There is nothing wrong with their approaches, but a new day in dental consulting has dawned. Although we certainly see the value in understanding patient types, personality profiles of the staff, and team building - these are often secondary concerns to the real issue that plague many dental offices. What makes us different, and better, is that we are not cookie-cutter consultants. We do not have one binder, plan, or approach to every office. We treat every practice as a new patient, assessing their needs and wants, and focusing on fixing the deepest decay first. Think of it this way, patient types and personality tests for staff are like whitening, you see it and it looks pretty but it doesn't always address the underlying issues. Collections and production activities are more like bridges, they fil the empty spaces and allow the patient to look better, feel better, and have a more complete smile. Just like you, we want our patients to address the most severe issues first and then focus on the aesthetics.
We are cost effective
One of the chief complaints we heard from dentists was the astronomical costs associated with getting good consulting help for their practice. It seems some consultants, like some patients, think dentists are made of money. We know that this isn't true. Actually, the majority of dentists came from middle or lower-middle class families and are essentially self-made people. Adding that most of your parents probably aren't independently wealthy, so you had to pay for all that fancy schooling, and we know cashflow can be a real issue in a dental practice. And let's not even talk about the super high overhead! So, that's great but what does that mean to you? Well, we are affordable. We charge hourly, and roughly half of the hourly rates we usually see for consultants. We are boots on the ground, in your office, teaching and adjusting as we go to get you the best results in the least amount of time. We know that you work hard for your money, and our goal is to help you make more of it and keep more that you collect. Although every office is different and we cannot give you exact figures, we can tell you that the average cost for 50 or so hours of consulting plus the tandem training and initial consult is around $18,000. Compare this to the average going rate for consulting companies of around $30,000 to $60,000 for far less actual hours of consulting. We are confident that once you meet us and see our plan for your office, you will agree that the modest investment in your practice is worth it.
Initial Consultation and Reporting
This is an opportunity for us to see the inner workings of your office in it's current state. We will take a day or day and a half and observe every aspect of the office. This will include watching the flow of patients, checking in and walking out of patients, flow of the appointments (hygiene and Doctor), and staff relations. We will also run reports to get a feel for the health of the practice both financially and systemically. We then take this information and synthesis it into a business report that we present to the Doctors. These reports include a detailed analysis of the strengths and weakness of the practice and all the players. Additionally, if you choose to provide payroll information we can assess your staff overhead costs in comparison to your productions and collections. We are often told by our clients that this is the most helpful tool in the running of their practice. They read it thoroughly and refer back to it often. The end of this report provides an estimation of the required coaching hours and time frame to transition your practice into it's best version. Now is a good time to note that our fees are significantly lower than traditional consultants and are done without sacrificing quality.
Tandem Team Training
Tandem team training is one of our favorite times in working with your office. We get to know the staff and Doctors on a more personal level, focusing on team building exercises that incorporate new approaches, or slightly modify old approaches, to interactions between the staff and the patients. This is our opportunity to review the often under-utilized verbal skills necessary to make patients feel valued and understood. We focus on the idea that presentation of treatment will be the start or stop to patient acceptance. We touch on building the practice from the ground up, starting with teamwork as a foundation for growing the practice. Where we stand out from other consultants is moving the team forward with implementing new processes and systems rather than focusing on hyper-detailed team building or patient types. The experience of growing and learning together is itself a team building process, and a much more organic one than forcing people into uncomfortable conversations in front of their boss. Tandem team training is the first interaction your staff really has with us, and it gives them an outlook on where we are, and where we intend to go. It helps them learn from us, learn to trust us, and unlocks the potential they didn't even know they had.
Administrative coaching is at the forefront of our systemic approach to perfecting your practice. These are the details, the little things that must be done correctly to ensure the patient experience is positive from the time they call to schedule their first appointment to the time they walk out the door. It is difficult to say what your practice may need until we see it in person, but in general we focus on these areas"
- Maximizing your schedule to increase production without making you nuts.
- Increasing your collection ratios, and making sure the collections flow is even, so you don't have weeks with very little cashflow.
- Teaching your staff how to collect at time of service.
- Treatment plan presentations and financial acceptance.
- Insurance aging reports (don't worry we'll explain these to you), eligibility, and benefits - not only the best ways to get it but where to put it for the whole staff to access.
- Training new staff or re-training current staff.
- Updating your office (if you desire) to a paper-less office.
- Effective Accounts Receivable collections.
Once the practice administrate staff gets the patients in the door, the clinical staff can shine. Your clinical staff has the education in treating your patient, our job is to teach them timely approaches to comprehensive care. Just as with administrative, every clinical staff has it's own strengths and challenges, but most often we see practices needing training on:
- Consistent clinical charting across all staff members.
- Best legal approaches to clinical notes.
- Treatment planning in the dental software and treatment acceptance from the clinical side.
- Hygiene retention plans that work now.
- Auditing of appointment types and times.
- Keeping the schedule on time, and running smoothly for providers.
- Incorporating new technology into appointments.
- Ensuring open communication between back of house staff.
- Making sure your practice meets the minimum requirements of the legal standard of care.
Insurance, Accounts Receivable, and Collections
Arguably one of the most important and often overlooked reasons why practices are not as successful as they can be, collections is much easier than people think with the proper training and language choices. We develop your staff with skills on how to increase collections, not only from patients but also insurance companies. Although as a law firm, we can take on collection accounts from your office, we would rather not. That sounds funny, but it makes much more sense for you to have staff you are already paying to collect money, then it does to pay a lawyer to do the same thing. Certainly there are some accounts that will have to go to outside collections, patients and even insurance, but our goal it to help you keep these to 5 or 6 a year instead of 5 or 6 a month.
Another place we really rise above the rest is in our commitment to staying with you beyond our initial training. Our clients are clients for life, not because they need constant help, but because they recognize the value of having outside administrative review. With a minimum of 4 coaching hours per quarter, we will review your important reports monthly and keep you advised of any issues we see. This is a wonderful way for you to have some business back-up from people who have their finger on the pulse of the dental community at large. Of course, we can always come back in to your office at any time to address specific needs or train a new staff member.