Utilizing the right dental practice software can streamline your practice’s daily tasks and make staying in touch with patients a lot easier. Most dentists use dental office practice management software to keep track of patient records and inventory. But has your practice ever considered adding patient communication software to the mix?
Practice management software can automate tasks like billing, reporting, and messaging, helping you streamline your day-to-day operations and improve productivity and patient care. Meanwhile, patient engagement software can help you communicate with patients more effectively to boost retention and increase your patient base.
These two types of programs pose vastly different benefits for your dental practice, and utilizing both types can optimize the patient experience. Learn the differences between practice management vs. patient communication software and why you need both as a dental practice owner.
Purpose of Practice Management Software (PMS)
Practice management software can help you manage, streamline, and automate the operational tasks involved in running your dental practice. Instead of spending manual staff hours on tedious tasks, your software can free up your receptionists and dental technicians to work on other things. These tasks may include:
Managing Patient Records
For modern dental practices, gone are the days of keeping physical patient files in bulky filing cabinets. If you haven’t already, your dental clinic can save a significant amount of time by importing your files into office management software.
This software enables you to quickly locate and review patient files, filter your patient base by specific categories, and make changes to a patient’s file.
Dental software also makes it easy for your dental office manager to keep track of your inventory and order more supplies and equipment at the right times.
You can receive alerts when you may be running low on fluoride, floss, and any other supplies you use daily. You can begin creating your list of dental supplies by referencing the American Dental Association’s inventory control guidelines for dentists.
Your dental office management software will keep track of your appointment scheduling, new patient appointments, and billing — all of which are indicative of your practice’s overall success. Your software should make it easy to generate reports that break down your revenue, profitability, and patient load and compare these metrics to past performance.
As a busy dental practitioner, you should never need to guess about whether your dental office is staying afloat. Your dental practice management software can make this information accessible and straightforward so that you can adjust your processes accordingly.
Assigning Billing Codes
Patient billing can be a huge ordeal if your dental practice doesn’t have the right protocols in place. But with dental practice management software, you’ll be able to quickly reference the relevant billing codes for each type of patient appointment and generate bills accordingly.
Your team will save time that they can then dedicate to other tasks, and you’ll receive payments faster, helping your bottom line.
Purpose of Patient Engagement Software
In contrast to practice management software, patient engagement software focuses broadly on improving patients’ experiences. This software can enhance your practice’s reputation, patient loyalty, and overall patient load, improving your profitability.
Communicating With Patients
Maintaining ongoing communication with current and potential patients can help you keep your schedule full. But phone calls can be time-consuming and ultimately ineffective, especially when eight in ten Americans don’t answer phone calls from unknown numbers.
With the right dental patient management software, dentists can enhance communications with patients without taking up more of the dental practice managers’ time. These programs allow dental professionals to send automated texts to patients, making it easier than ever to communicate:
- Upcoming appointment reminders
- Reminders to schedule bi-annual dental cleanings
- Follow-ups and check-ins about recent procedures
- New information about treatment planning
- Healthcare tips for infection control
Text messages provide a fast, direct line of communication to your patient base.
Gathering and Managing Feedback
Your practice won’t know how to improve the patient experience without inviting feedback from your current patients. Thankfully, your engagement software solution can help you gather and manage patient reviews, allowing you to tailor your patient care accordingly.
This software can send automatic review requests to patients within a certain amount of time after their appointments. It can also alert you every time a patient leaves a review of your practice on major platforms like Google and Yelp, allowing you to respond to any negative feedback quickly.
By encouraging and curating positive reviews, you can ensure that your practice has an excellent online reputation, encouraging potential patients to schedule.
Supporting Dental Marketing
Does your dental office need help with marketing? Your patient engagement software can support several elements of a comprehensive dental marketing strategy.
Many platforms include email marketing templates that make crafting high-quality marketing emails a breeze. They also allow for fast yet personalized communication with patients, which can go a long way in proving your practice’s commitment to patient care.
Consider how much time your staff spends tracking down late payments from patients. What if you could reduce — or even eliminate — this task from your daily schedule?
Many platforms include text-to-pay features that enable patients to pay their bills through links sent to their phones. Your software could also include patient financing solutions that eliminate the hassle of tracking down late payments, as the financing company will take care of it for you.
Attracting and Retaining New Patients
Your dentistry office should make new patient scheduling as easy as possible, and a high-quality engagement platform can do just that.
Many of these platforms allow for online patient scheduling, which means that potential patients won’t need to make any phone calls or speak to your staff to schedule new appointments. They also include online forms that your patients can fill out before their appointments.
Dental practice management software and patient engagement software go hand in hand, as they both provide valuable benefits for your dental service organization.
Are you ready to add all-inclusive patient engagement software to your operations? Schedule a Weave demo today.
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