Have you ever wished you could spend more time treating patients and less time managing the nitty-gritty details of your business?
You know that you should be empowering your staff to handle the day-to-day details so that you can focus on what you do best. However, delegation doesn’t always come naturally, especially if you feel like the information about your daily operations isn’t readily available (or worse, not accurate).
One of the best ways to get a clear view of your business is with a dashboard that automatically tracks important metrics in your practice. At a glance, you’ll get to see real-time data that tracks the most critical elements of your dental practice. You’ll have instant and actionable information about how your practice and employees are performing.
Instead of guessing what’s going on in your business, Weave’s analytics dashboard lets you know for certain. Additionally, instead of having to pull your numbers from a bunch of different places, you’ll have everything in one spot.
What is a Dental Dashboard?
Just like the dashboard of your car gives you vital information about its status and current performance, a dental dashboard can deliver similar information about your business.
Dashboards are graphical interfaces that sync up with your systems and databases to report what’s going on in your business. You can monitor new patient visits, outgoing calls, reappointment percentage and more. All of the data is tracked in real-time, so you can get an instant snapshot on-demand.
As you can imagine, these dashboards are also instrumental in creating a system of accountability in your practice. When your entire team (including you) is accountable, you’re likely to notice massive improvements in your business and your company culture. The common goals you all are working toward can be tracked accurately, and when you meet a milestone, you can celebrate!
The Top 5 Ways Dental Dashboards Can Create Accountability
1. Track Key Metrics as a Team
One of the most common uses of a dental dashboard is to track your company’s metrics. As a dentist, you’re likely interested in the following:
Number of daily, weekly, or monthly office visits
Percentage of kept appointments
Number of hygiene visits
Case acceptance rates
The number of metrics you can track is limited only by your imagination, but we recommend focusing your dashboard only on what’s necessary to move your business forward. If you end up looking at too many variables, they can begin to lose meaning. They’ll also distract you from monitoring what’s most important to your bottom line and treatment outcomes.
You probably already have half a dozen or so metrics you want to track. To create buy-in among your team, you could also have a meeting and ask everyone to suggest the metrics you should be monitoring.
Once you’ve established what you want to track, you can set goals and track progress over time. Are new patient visits increasing or decreasing? Which metrics have improved, and which ones are in decline? Are Mondays always the busiest day of your practice? Have Mondays gotten busier or slower? As you can imagine, it can be fun to start seeing your real-world experience reflected in a data-driven visual dashboard.
In addition to trends, you can also set thresholds that tell you when you’re on target, when you should be concerned, and when the situation is dire. A color-coded system using green, yellow, and red with clear ranges for each will give you and your team a quick view of where you stand.
For example, if your goal is 30 new patients per month, and you’ve only had five by the halfway point of the month, this metric will likely be red. When a metric enters the red zone, it can be helpful to investigate what’s going on. Perhaps you ran fewer ads or adjusted an ad, or a new competitor has opened up shop nearby. Maybe you lost a team member that patients adored.
Most likely, the answer will be in the dashboard itself, though it is also tremendously helpful to discuss a red metric as a team. Another best practice is to set benchmarks for how many new patients you should have at the end of each week of the month. If you start to fall behind, you can make adjustments early in the month instead of having to scramble at the end of the month in a futile attempt to meet a target.
There are other helpful clues you’ll get with this color-coded system, too. If you continue to see only green, then it might be time to increase your goals. However, if month after month is red, then there could be a systemic issue that you need to address.
In addition to tracking the metrics on a historical basis, you can also set up dashboards to alert you whenever a metric starts to slip. This is helpful if you’re not in the office every day or you want to keep an eye on the practice without having to be there on a full-time basis.
2. Monitor Individual Performance
A dental dashboard can track the activities and performance of individuals as well as the practice as a whole. For example, you can look at when employees clock in to see who is on time and who is tardy.
You can also track when a team member upsells a plan or takes other initiatives. By assigning tasks and actions to individual team members, you’ll have a more detailed view of everyone’s performance. In addition to seeing the company’s performance as a whole, now you’ll be able to track each person’s contribution to the success of your practice.
3. Reward Employees
We all like to think that we’ll be recognized for working hard and going the extra mile, and contrary to popular belief, the rewards don’t have to be excessive salary increases. Generally speaking, people just want to feel appreciated. They also want to feel like you understand them as humans. After all, you do work together!
We recommend taking some time to get to know what motivates each of your employees. Some of them might appreciate cash bonuses for meeting a goal. Others might prefer getting a gift certificate to a place they normally wouldn’t go. Some employees might be ecstatic to get a day or two off with pay.
Find out what excites and motivates your employees, and then offer incentives for meeting a goal. This concept is referred to as “gamification,” meaning it becomes a game. While it can be taken too far, it can be incredibly effective when it’s done thoughtfully.
For example, you could reward the entire staff for meeting a revenue goal. Another option is to incentivize employees for being on time for all of their shifts.
Once you start meeting goals, it’s time to celebrate. Forbes identified one of the top secrets to long-lasting morale is to celebrate your team’s successes. It’s tempting to take a win for granted, and your team might also feel like they’re being taken for granted.
Some managers and business owners believe that their staff should succeed and excel as part of their job, but people also want recognition beyond monetary compensation.
A dashboard can help build excitement as your team strives to achieve a goal. If there are a few days left in the month and you’re almost at your patient visit goal, then everyone can encourage each other and work together as a team to ensure that patients make it to their appointments. When you do succeed, celebrating as a team can also help build and maintain comradery.
5. Requests No Longer “Fall Through the Cracks”
We all have long to-do lists, and sometimes we forget we were supposed to do something. Everyone is busy, and many offices are fast-paced. The occasional excuse of “I’m sorry. That must have fallen through the cracks” won’t work more than a few times.
A dental dashboard can give you a quick glance at what’s happening in your business and allow you to hold the right people accountable. As a result, your direct involvement in the day-to-day office management is kept to a minimum, and you can focus on what you do best!
Want to learn more about how Weave can help create accountability? Contact us for a demo today.