Why does an audiology practice need a CRM?8th May 2020
Heardat User Manual Version 3.0 and FAQ’s Version 2.120th May 2020
Geoffrey Cooling (Just Audiology Stuff) on 23 June 2012 published a blog post that sets out what features a CRM need to deliver to become a real asset in an audiology practice. Fast forward 8 years, reading this post for the first time ever, realising that Heardat is ALL THIS and MORE!!!
He starts by saying the following:
”A CRM can be of immense use to your Practice, it can gather data that is of real use to you in the management of several facets of your day to day working life. It can also automate a lot of the day to day workings of a Practice. In your busy day to day Practice, you are consistently caught up in the tactical. You need something or someone to look after the strategic. A good CRM system should do that for your business. Of course, you need to set out your strategic goals and plans, but with the automation of the deployment given to this by a good CRM, you should only have to consider it quarterly. So with this in mind what features does a CRM have to have? What benefit do you want from those features in your business?”
He starts discussing the Patient Journey Automation which consists of several visits over years.
“The Patient journey is deployed as part of your value added service and it consists of different types and length of appointments. These appointments are strategically designed to bolster your Patient retention and referral strategy. Excellent so far, but, in order for this to work effectively it involves a lot of thought and administrative time to run. However we know that this strategy is worth the effort because of the on-going payoff to your business.
We need a CRM to be able to automate this process somewhat, but how automated can it be? In an ideal world what exactly would you like it to do?
- Automatically schedule the differing follow up visits and label them
- Automatically set up reminders for staff to contact Patients at appropriate times
- Automatically mail merge the correct contact letters”
Heardat does so many of the mentioned points, but he goes on to elaborate on the automation of workflows for every patient journey…
So in an ideal system you would be able to input your standard Patient journey. Once a Patient was changed from a Prospect to a Purchaser, the CRM would have several workflows that kicked in that took care of everything else. Like I said, in an ideal world, however most CRMs I have come across so far are not nearly as automated. In order to allow any CRM to assist you in your business you need to input the data in order that you can later pull it out. So in the case of the three objectives we have set, we need to set out strict processes to achieve the benefits.
The simplest manner to meet our goals is to set up a search on the CRM for a Purchasing Patient that has had not appointment for five months or more or eight months or more etc. In that way, your receptionist may run that search at the start of a month and spit out a list of Patients that need to be called back. You can then call, mail and schedule to your hearts content.
He further elaborates about mail marketing which should be automatically taken care of, which Heardat does!
“Again, in an ideal world, we would like to set out the parameters of our mail marketing and our CRM automatically takes care of that marketing. Sorry, probably is not going to happen for you. However, if we again set up parameter searches we can run them at will, the searches will allow us to easily pull marketing lists that we can then merge with our letter templates. The search parameters could include CNP (Consultation No Purchase) last appointment 12 months or more. Purchaser, last sale forty eight months or more etc. In this way we can run this searches on a monthly basis and take control of our mail marketing. Again several of the CRMs available allow you to undertake this with ease.”
He mentions Medical Reports & Referral Letters – great news is that fully functional, semi-automated report and referral functionality are in test phase and will be available very soon!
“A good CRM will allow the automation of these letters allowing you to concentrate on something else. However, you will first have to set up the
letters and reports in your templates in order that you can quickly and easily mail merge them. If you wish to automate this process in order that your receptionist can undertake the mailing you will need to enter a category in order that she or he can search and merge.”
Oh and financials…not everyone’s favourite – WE KNOW! Lets hear what he says:
“Integration of financial data in a CRM gives you a powerful management tool. It allows you to quickly and easily spit out the data that you need to assess the health of your business. It also can clearly point out where you have issues if you know what you are looking for. Of course that is if you have set up the CRM to record the data in the first place. What data is of real relevance to you in order that you can truly assess the health of your business and the efficacy of your staff?
- Sales Conversion Rate
- Monaural Rate
- Binaural Rate
- Cancellation Rate
- Aftercare Appointment Rate
- Cancelled Appointment Rate
- Referral Sources
- Average Sales Price
- Unit Volume
All of these KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are imperative in order that you can make assessments of how your business and your employees are doing. Watching these KPIs over time allows you to continually monitor the health of your business. It will also allow you to quickly recognize and deal with issues that are arising.”
Well – it feels as if he took the words right out of our mouths! Many (perhaps not all) of these functions are already at your fingertips, and from current feedback they are really very helpful in monitoring your business and tracking what is happening!
Lastly, he explains about marketing monitoring. This is what all of us want isn’t it? A good return on investment (ROI) – no way of ensuring that if you don’t track it!
“A good CRM will also allow you to continually assess your return on investment of your marketing activities. You need to ensure that there is a referral source field and you need to ensure that you have set out clear and simple categories. But once you have done this you can set up searches that allow you to continuously pull the data on referral sources allowing you to make factual decisions on marketing.”
He concludes by saying that this post of his does not cover everything – and it surely doesn’t cover everything needed in a good CRM and also not everything already built into Heardat – but what a great surprise to read this blog and realize that Heardat is everything that someone like Geoffrey Cooling envisioned an audiology CRM to be!
If you have any questions about Heardat and the tailor made solution it offers to you, you are welcome to contact us!
** Geoffrey Cooling’s original blog post can be read here: https://justaudiologystuff.com/practice-management-software-what-do-you-need-from-your-crm/**