The Importance of Measuring the Success of Your Dental Practice

June 2019 | Article

By Dustin Wheeler

You’re pulled in many different directions as the owner of a dental practice. You’re tasked with maintaining healthy smiles, managing employee schedules, paying the bills and planning for the future growth of your practice, among other things. With such a busy schedule, it may be typical for you to not have your business performance numbers well-organized when you need them, let alone understand how that information may help you make informed decisions.

Determining key metrics for your dental practice is a critical process for measuring and determining your success. These metrics can tell you if your business is heading in the right direction or if you need to make changes to your strategy or how you operate.

Here are a few keys to successfully developing metrics:

  1. Keep it simple. Select about three to 10 key metrics to track, so that collection and review of the data is manageable.Some common tracked metrics for dental practices are listed later in this article.
  2. Have a benchmark. While the numbers by themselves may be interesting, you’ll gain more insights by measuring your actual performance against a budget, goal or industry standard.
  3. Make people accountable. Assign each metric to an individual to establish accountability. For example, a receptionist responsible for scheduling may have a goal of having a certain percentage of all hygiene patients scheduled for their next appointment.
  4. Consider incentives. Incentives generally lead to increased drive to achieve the assigned metric. Plus, it’s a morale boost for employees to celebrate milestones.

Some key quantifiable metrics your dental practice may be interested in tracking:

Cash Flow: How much money is owed to you by your patients? How long after procedures is it taking to process insurance claims? How much money do you currently owe to outside vendors? Do you have sufficient cash to cover upcoming bills?

Patient Numbers & Satisfaction: How many active patients does your practice have? How many new patients have come in the last month or year, and why did they come to your practice? What ratings are you seeing via patient surveys? Do you need to increase your outreach efforts?

Employee Considerations: Are you fully staffed? What is your employee retention rate? Do you have the right people in the right spot, performing the right work? Are employees being assessed on their performance and are they performing well?

Marketing: How many social media followers do you have? How many website hits have you had? What was the success rate of your recent mailer?

There are many ways to measure the success of your practice. Identifying the metrics that are important to you and acting on that information will improve performance and help you feel confident you are continuing on the path to achieving your goals. Contact our Eide Bailly team to learn more about key metrics and how we can help you identify and track them.

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