There are so many vendors of Medical Software, and even more versions of it around but where do you start?
As a busy doctor, medspa owner or manager, the decision to start using or upgrade medical software or practice management software system can be the start of a stressful buying cycle punctuated with endless demos, sales calls and quotes.
When there’s so much at stake from overall cost to time it will take for the clinic to learn how to use, it’s important to ensure you make the right choice for your business. We’ve compiled a few key factors to focus on when deciding on a new medical software and practice management system.
Focus 1: Ease of Use
Surprisingly, this is the most important element of your software. Your software should be easy to use (everyone should be able to use it easily!) AND efficient because extra time to do extra tasks costs both precious time and money. The right software should provide both functionality AND increase workflow. Here are the key factors to look for when considering Ease of Use elements in your new software:
The time it takes to complete a task – the software should have a simple display system with everything you use frequently easily and quickly accessible because clicks can add up!
Human – Machine Interaction
How easy it is for your staff to use and that means ALL staff from front desk staff to nurses and the practitioner.
Focus 2: Does it make you money?
Practice Management Systems are designed to streamline the ENTIRE practice. It should be saving you time and bringing in more money! How does it do this?
The ability to have the program complete simple, repetitive tasks is a huge time and resource (think less staff or staff being able to focus on other things) saver. Having the program complete tasks such as sending out appointment reminders, happy birthday emails and keeping track of a rewards or VIP program helps you automatically grow your business and keep your clients engaged and connected so they keep coming back for more services!
Help Staff Sell
Medical software programs keep detailed records of clients’ purchasing and service histories. Most Practice Management Systems also include a POS (Point of Sale) terminal to cash out clients. At the point of sale, staff can upsell products based on recent history.
Focus 3: Support and Training
Consider what type of training the company provides when you purchase the software for staff and practitioners to become familiar with and learn how to use the new system.
Almost all software companies have a paid technical support program. Paying for support is unavoidable, but consider what you get for your money. Key questions to ask can include What are the support hours (do they have extended business hours and availability on weekends?), will you speak to real people who can communicate easily and quickly with you, what does the support cover?
Focus 4: Power & Customization
Medical software and practice management software shouldn’t have a “one size fits all” approach and should be able to do everything you need it to do. It should also do thing you didn’t even know you could do such as manage your staff payroll and provide EMR services (Electronic Medical Records). Things to consider include:
- Ability to seamlessly & quickly perform Core Functions (Scheduling, client profiles, email system)
- Have the storage and processing power to manage your staff, resources and clients
- Custom forms and procedure documentation forms
- Custom staff input and management (hours, commission, security accesses)
Also keep in mind that for smaller clinics and medspas, smaller software companies are a better option for personalization and support. Bigger hospitals benefit from bigger systems and software providers.
Cost of the software itself is undoubtedly a factor, but know that purchasing software is an investment in your business. The most expensive kind doesn’t always mean it will be the best quality and the right fit for your clinic. Consider the following in addition to overall pricing:
- The ability to pick and choose addons to create a custom package so you buy only what you need.
- Flexible payment options (Lease to Own programs, a set number of payments in a payment plan)
Do your research, watch product demos, complete a trial session if possible and test drive the system and get feedback from all of your staff before making a final decision.