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Welcome to question of the day #347

Eyetool question of the day #347

I’m planning to open my own community eye care practice. Should I invest in a lot of technology?

Technology can be useful in building a practice but make sure you have the basics in place first. If people don’t come to your practice or don’t come back after their first visit you can have every piece of technology available but your practice won’t prosper.

To me, customer service is king and beats technology. Make sure you:

Have a great staff team. Recruit people who are friendly and like working with people face-to-face and also over the phone. Make sure that your staff will get on with each other.

Work out the patient flow from first contact to leaving with their new glass and make sure all staff understand the flow and try to identify anything that will delay the patient flow.

Train the staff so they understand that excellent customer service is at the core of everything they do. They must deliver everything that they say they will to the patient in a friendly and efficient way.

They must arrive at work on time and be focused on their roles while they are in the practice, making sure that non-patient tasks are completed during periods when they are not serving patients.

Patients who complain about glasses or service must be taken seriously and treated courteously. And they whatever caused the complaint must be investigated and steps are taken to prevent it from arising again.

I call these elements of practice work the nuts and bolts of the business. They are often free (other than the time taken to implement them) and are more important than technology.

If the nuts and bolts of your practice are secure then you can build on the technology.