13 min readThe Jameson Files 110 [FAQs] What Are Your Practice Performance Metrics?

Carrie Webber, Owner, The Jameson Group

Carrie Webber [00:00:13] Welcome back to the Jameson Files. I’m Carrie Webber and I’m your host. I’m excited to have you back with us for this episode. This is a special episode of The Jameson Files where we will be focusing on some quick-fire topics with one of my friends and colleagues. Dru Halverson. Dru, thank you for being with me. 

Dru Halverson [00:00:33] Well, thank you for having me. 

Carrie Webber [00:00:35] Dru is our longest-term team member on the Jameson team, actually started with Jameson in Dr. Jameson practice as his dental hygienist and came on board to work with Cathy when she first started our company as the first additional advisor to the team. 

Dru Halverson [00:00:53] Yes. So long ago, we’ve been through a lot together. 

Carrie Webber [00:00:57] So something that we had talked about over time and when we were considering content for the Jameson Files episode was some of these frequently asked questions and areas that we work on with our own clients where their practices and how we could use this platform to help more people as they’re working through these areas in their businesses. 

Carrie Webber [00:01:21] So I want to do some of these quickfire series with you for the podcast. And I want to start with something that is really important to us at Jameson when we work with our clients, and that is the monitoring of the progress of the practice. 

Dru Halverson [00:01:38] Right. Where do you stand? 

Carrie Webber [00:01:39] Right. Where do you stand? That’s what we call the key performance indicators in business are those KPIs that typically any business is monitoring in some way, shape or form or not. But those can take a lot of forms in different businesses and especially in dentistry. I actually just did a webinar recently for Jameson talking about what we consider the critical factors of the business of dentistry that Cathy Jameson really put into play for us some years ago. But it can be so complex, it can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be, depending frankly how much you really focus your energy on the health and well-being of the business working on the business. So, you and I were recently talking about something that you see a lot when because you have been with us all these years, you’ve been in a lot of practices. 

Dru Halverson [00:02:35] Seen a lot. 

Carrie Webber [00:02:36] You’ve seen a lot. You’ve seen a lot of things in the understanding and focus and attention on where you are. You know, in your practice in the business is something that tends to fall by the wayside a lot. Would you agree? 

Dru Halverson [00:02:52] Definitely. Well, we work we work in our business. We work on the patients. We take care of the patients. We do the procedures that we forget to work on the business. And the only way we can work on the business is to know the statistics or the KPI. Right. 

Carrie Webber [00:03:10] And we could spend a long time talking about what those KPI. Tsavo, what are the ones that we just weren’t speaking about today is where you are in the relationship with your patients. So patient retention in the patient, you know, where do you stand with your patients today? Can you kind of tell me a little bit about what you see and practices and what you really encourage them to keep an eye on in terms of what would be KPI, so to speak, when it comes to the patient relationship? 

Dru Halverson [00:03:39] There are mainly four. OK. So, it’s you need to know how many patients are coming into your practice. New patients, returning patients. You need to know how many patients are leaving your practice for any reason. And you need to have those reasons in place, because if you don’t know those and don’t ask those hard questions, then you don’t know what to work on for the future. And then there’s hygiene retention. You need to have 85, 80 to 85 percent of your patient base, active patient base involved in hygiene retention. And that system needs to be working all the time. And all of the patients that are in hygiene retention need to be current. They can’t be passed you. And then the treatment retention needs to be 80 to 85 percent acceptance. And it needs to be worked every month for four solid months on a person that was diagnosed or re diagnosed with treatment. That last appointment. So those systems are really important to those KPI is very important to look at. 

Carrie Webber [00:04:52] So how many patients are coming in every month? 

Dru Halverson [00:04:55] Mm hmm. 

Carrie Webber [00:04:56] How many patients are falling out? 

Dru Halverson [00:04:58] Yes.

Carrie Webber [00:04:58] Every month? 

Dru Halverson [00:04:59] Yes. You have to have a good grasp of your active patient base so that active patients. 

Carrie Webber [00:05:06] That’s actually that’s kind of a fifth one. But. But the hygiene retention and the treatment acceptance really make up that active patient base in a lot of ways. Would you agree? 

Dru Halverson [00:05:14] Yes.

Carrie Webber [00:05:14] So how do you if someone is listening to this and going, oh, well, I was really proud that I was tracking production this month. Where would you recommend that they start if they say, OK, I get it, but where do I start? This overwhelms me. Where would you begin? 

Dru Halverson [00:05:29] Well, I think just finding in your software program the numbers that you need to look at and most software programs are going to track the new patients coming in, because once you enter the patient into the computer system is going to mark that as a new patient. You need to look at the new patients that are coming in, but you also need to know what kind of new patients are coming in. 

Carrie Webber [00:05:53] Right.

Dru Halverson [00:05:54] Are they insured. Are they fee for service? Are they an emergency patient only? Or are they converting to a forever patient? Right. Are they young children? Are they older adults? You know what? What are your patients that you’re attracting? You need to know that for a lot of different reasons. 

Carrie Webber [00:06:14] Right. And when you were talking about the treatment acceptance, you said you need to be working on that for four months after the diagnosis and presentation. Can you tell me a little bit more about what you mean by that? 

Dru Halverson [00:06:29] Sure. So, when a patient comes in and they’re diagnosed, if they don’t say yes to the treatment that day face to face, then your treatment retention coordinator or a team member needs to be chasing that pending treatment for that patient for approximately four months. So, by the end of that four months, you should have them moving forward with either part of their treatment or all of their treatment. If they don’t say yes to any of that treatment by that four-month time, then they’re going to fall out of that treatment retention system and then fall into the hygiene retention system because something happened. We didn’t create enough value for the treatment that was needed. They didn’t see it. They didn’t see the need. They didn’t have the financial time spent with them to get a clear financial arrangement made. And they just didn’t get it. They didn’t get to the Yes. So, we need a chance, another chance in the clinical area for them to say yes to the treatment. Right. So we’ll get them back in for the hygiene appointment and then start all over again. 

Carrie Webber [00:07:40] And that really supports what we say a lot when it comes to your case. Presentation systems and processes in your practice is it’s all great if you have great processes that lead up to your initial treatment presentation. But if you have no processes in place for follow up, you’re missing a huge piece of the puzzle. Synchrony Financial even has a study that says that people take upwards of sixty-nine plus days to make a dental and purchasing decision. So when you think about that, if that’s true, which the consumers are telling them, it is, if you have no follow up for those four months, that certainly does fill that four month window of when they’re still making considerations of how they would like to proceed. So it’s important. So that’s one thing to think about, is to look at that treatment acceptance piece in the patient relationship. Do you have processes in place? How long does it seem to be taking and having those conversations as a team of how can we do this better? 

Dru Halverson [00:08:42] It’s always a surprise to every practice that we work with when we pull up how many dollars are out and pending treatment. So, when we look at the pending treatment that is incomplete or and schedules or even scheduled but yet not complete, that amount is always much higher than what they ever thought it would be. And so that opens their eyes to, oh, my gosh, we’ve got to get some work into the system to get our acceptance up to 80 to 85 percent dry acceptance. And, you know, it’s always miraculous when somebody just puts a little effort into adding value at the appointment, having a consultation face to face, doing a financial arrangement face to face, then you get that higher acceptance and that makes a difference. So the KPIs are just a good way to measure what is being successful and what isn’t. And when you focus on it, it will even make a difference, even though you’re we haven’t done it before. It will start to make a difference that first month. 

Carrie Webber [00:09:57] And having the entire team involved and aware. How do you how do you find success with the practices you work with and really engaging the team and making it a priority to that? Everybody is aware of those important numbers or poor KPI indicators in the practice. 

Dru Halverson [00:10:13] I love to have the teams look at those statistics, at the team meetings. How many patients came through this month that needed treatment? How many dollars were involved in those treatment plans and how many of those are moving forward? How many patients are moving forward? Those are very important numbers for everybody to understand. Monthly or bi-monthly, whatever you’re doing for your team meetings. But also, I have found that and we at Jameson have found that if you look at the treatment that was diagnosed yesterday and then how many people said yes to treatment that day and have scheduled for the future, are there moving forward and you do that at your huddle every day, that really gets everybody pumped up. Right. So you’re looking at smaller numbers on that daily basis and that really, you know, instead of waiting a month to talk about it, you’re talking about it every day, not spending a lot of time on it, just giving some overview for that next day. Yesterday we diagnosed six thousand dollars. Of that, 45 hundred dollars is scheduled for the future and they have signed financial agreements. Everybody was excited. The other treatment I’m going to be following up with them in a couple of weeks. So, I need to say that pumps everybody up and gets everybody excited that they’re going to be able to take care of those patients and to get those patients healthy. Right. You know, I talk about money and I talk about care and health care. It’s not all about the money. But if you’re generating the income, then that tells us that you’re taking care of the people.

Carrie Webber [00:12:00] And, you know, it also is important to think about it in this way, because especially if you’re marketing, if you’re investing in marketing and you don’t know what’s coming in and in from a new patient standpoint or what’s being accepted or you don’t know where those patients are coming from, how do you even know if you’re being successful with the marketing? Are you attracting the right people for your practice and the kind of dentistry you want to provide? If you’re not measuring, how would you how do you know what you know if your investment is really making an a positive impact for the practice? And something else that’s always interesting to me is, is how few practices actually don’t inform the teams about the practice KPIs where they are now and then or even communicating to them where they want to be. Those goals for what you know, your teams, you may be really unhappy with where you are right now. Your teams could really quite possibly think they’re doing great if they have no measuring stick to measure their performance. 

Dru Halverson [00:12:59] And there’s one other, unfortunately, some of the doctors don’t know how well they’re doing either right or poorly. So it’s important for them to look at the numbers and then share those numbers with the team. 

Carrie Webber [00:13:10] If you want to grow, if you want to change, if you want to get better. You have to know where you are right now to determine any kind of path forward of where you want to go. So key performance indicators are so many, and this is just one of them. Where do you stand in the relationships with your patients? A great homework assignment for those of you listening or watching right now. Could be two to go pull that information from your practice management software. You know, how many patients came in this month and the month before and the month before that? How many patients fell out of the bottom, walked out the back door and not to come back? Know how many are in active hygiene retention this month? How many are, you know, how is your treatment acceptance? And that patient accepted acceptance of diagnosis, treatment. 

Carrie Webber [00:13:57] And then look at that in terms of where you are now and where do you want to go and focus as a team, setting some goals and some action plans on how to get there. So thanks, Dru. Thank you for joining us on this episode of the Jameson Files. Visit us online at J M S N dot com. You can subscribe to this podcast on iTunes, Google Play Music, or Spotify. Do you have questions or topics you’d like us to answer or cover on the next podcast? Email us at [email protected].

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