When you first started your practice, hopefully, you took the time to make some financial projections. Hopefully, you took the time to develop a plan for attracting a steady stream of new patients – enough to build a practice around. All of this should be part of your practice’s business plan. Whether you’ve had your own practice for months, years, or decades, it’s important to take the time and review your progress in order to stay on track.
Below are some questions you can ask to determine whether you’re on track with your business plan projections. If not, it may be time to make some adjustments, and try some new strategies.
Are You Attracting Enough Patients?
Attracting enough patients is crucial to the survival of any practice. When you wrote your business plan, what strategies did you determine you would use to keep the appointment book full?
If the patient flow isn’t exactly where you want it to be, it may be time to rethink your marketing. It may be time to increase your community presence, enhance your online presence, or look for additional social media channels to attract more patients. All of these can be viable options, depending on the specific need.
Is Your Practice Growing?
There may be a reason that you’re feeling extremely overworked and stressed, without making much progress right now. That reason might be you. Maybe it’s time to hire an office manager, another assistant, or bring on a partner. The reason that things feel stressed inside your office might be that nothing gets done without your help. Hiring that extra help can be a significant risk, but necessary to accommodate growth. You can use this quarantine time to make sure that your practice is positioned for a prosperous future.
Are You Offering the Right Services?
Now is a time to evaluate your list of services that you offer to patients. You may have more capabilities and opportunities open to you than you did when you created your business plan. This may be a time to expand the services that you can do within your office without referring your patients out. It’s a way to increase revenue and take advantage of your capabilities.
Use this Opportunity to Strengthen Your Practice
The COVID-19 outbreak is creating a stressful time for all businesses, doctors, and dentists included. But there are steps that you can take to create more stability for your practice. If you are looking for additional ways to strengthen your business during this time, you may consider:
• Take advantage of record low-interest rates.
• Research quarantine benefits through your insurance company.
• Plan an office remodel. Pick your interior selections and finalize your design details.
• Tour potential properties for your business and ask the seller if they’re willing to lower the price.
• Evaluate your current lease and ask the landlord if they’re willing to give you a 30-day grace period on rent payments.
• Refinance your home and office.
• Get caught up on continuing education credits as a way to improve your skillset.
• Meet with a CPA or financial advisor for further advice.
• Call your credit card companies and lenders to see about pausing payments or paying interest only.