Three ways technology can make a difference in practice management

Three ways technology can make a difference in practice managementAlex O’Neill discusses how technology can improve staff retention and efficiency, and free up more time.

Organisations in most sectors are taking advantage of innovative technologies to support their business. And why wouldn’t they? Expert designed software delivers positive results, is cost-effective, reliable, and largely evidenced to improve efficiencies across the board.

The profession has been very fast to adopt front of house solutions. For example, intra-oral scanners. However research has shown that we fall behind considerably when it comes to implementing back-office solutions. In short, it is more likely that your local coffee shop has a rota solution in place than your local dental practice.

For more than 40 years, Agilio Software has invested time and expertise to develop innovative technology that helps dental practices run more efficiently, save time, and retain staff. In this article I’ll share three ways technology can positively impact running a successful dental business.

1. Staff retention

It’s no secret that the profession has been struggling to retain team members. We are currently in a staffing crisis. There are many reasons people are leaving dentistry. Some key factors include excessive workloads resulting in burnout, a lack of investment in learning and development, and poor work-life balance.

All of these reasons can be addressed with the right technology.

HR software should be a key investment. One of the features of our popular Iteam system is the ability to schedule your staff rota up to a year in advance. This gives your team more control over their working lives.

Additionally, the system, which is dental specific, flags any problems such as insufficient staffing or inadequate nurse to dentist ratio. These features save managers a significant amount of time and hassle. It reduces team conflict and ultimately leading to a happier, more harmonious workforce.

A lack of focus on learning and career development is a key reason good people leave the dental profession. Ultimately, human beings want to work for businesses that care about them and help them to succeed.

Therefore, when it comes to retaining staff and making your organisation more attractive to employees, demonstrating your commitment to supporting and developing them goes a very long way.

Investing in an online learning platform like Agilio’s Ilearn and giving team members access to over 235 enhanced CPD courses. This helps them to maintain skills and develop into new roles helps everyone to thrive and feel valued. You’ll ultimately see an improvement in staff loyalty and retention.

2. Improved efficiency

A key goal of back-office software solutions is to increase efficiency through streamlining and automating core business processes wherever possible. Crucially, if this software is designed by subject matter experts, then it should also reduce the common pains felt by people fulfilling the key roles in a practice.

Ask any practice manager – getting all the paperwork on file for a new starter is painful. Keeping that documentation up to date is perhaps even more annoying due to things, such as indemnity renewal dates.

Nowadays, this documentation can be uploaded and instantly accessed and managed at the touch of a button with our Iteam platform. Instead of having to figure out what documents you need, and then going back-and-forth on emails, the software will identify any paperwork needed for a particular role. Your team can access and upload their documentation through the staff portal, which also sends out reminders when certificates expire.

Piles of paperwork become all too familiar when preparing for a CQC inspection. Investing in a compliance platform like Agilio’s Icomply means you have all the necessary policies and documentation at your fingertips. This helps to ensure that you’re always inspection ready.

No worries or concerns

Heather Finkle, compliance manager at Gensmile Dental Group, credits Icomply for ensuring compliance is easily managed across the group’s 28 practices.

‘If you follow Agilio’s programme and the monthly compliance subjects, you will cover everything the CQC would expect you to. Therefore, you have no worries or concerns like “have I done the right risk assessments?” or “have I done the right audits?” Agilio provides everything that you need.’

Technology can also help present information to support decision-making across an organisation. Dashboards and reports can be easily generated to help you make more informed decisions. This saves time and hassle, as you’re no longer required to physically check for information.

From Ilearn’s reporting features, to monitoring compliance progress across multiple practices in Icomply – dashboards are extremely efficient.

Karen Haresnape, compliance manager at Riverdale Healthcare, has found that introducing Icomply across 35 practices, and having the group dashboard, has enabled her and her team to be efficient at spotting and resolving issues across the group.

‘I found that Icomply is so easy to use. I can go to a touch of a button and view each practice individually to see where they are, how they’re completing their compliance. Are they up to date? Are they struggling? Do they need further help?’

3. Freeing up time

With the right technology in place, and everyone using it efficiently, practice managers and owners can free up time to focus on more important tasks. This includes improving the patient journey, growing your business, and creating the space and capacity.

Utilising technology like ours means that your responsibilities to keep the practice ticking over are freed up, allowing you that time to map out how you can get your business to where you want it to be, and adopting the right technology could be that first step.

I always recommend that as the first priority practices use the time created by implementing technology to focus on their organisational vision, mission and values. Deciding why your business exists and what it stands for makes for very powerful recruitment conversations. The focus is on whether an individual wants to be part of your journey rather than just ‘would you like to work with us?’

If you have invested in any of Agilio Software’s products, you and your team can save even more time by having just one log-in across our platforms.

This, alongside the intelligent digital audits in Icomply (that score your answers and provide feedback), the upcoming digital logs feature and the simple fact that we are dedicated to constantly researching inspection reports and looking for efficiencies is why we are four times larger than our closest competitor.

Learn more about how our technology can help to grow your dental business by clicking here.

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