Keeping Stats & Monitoring your Business
Stop for a moment if you will and imagine you’re in the
driver’s seat of your favorite rig. Now imagine to your
surprise a dashboard without any functioning gauges or
monitors. No fuel, temperature or battery status, not even a
speedometer or tachometer. Could you drive? Of course you
could. Now, how far down the road you’d get without a
challenge would be, well, a challenge.
Now stop for a moment and think about your business and
its gauges. How do you know if your practice is functioning
on all cylinders? Are you maximizing production and
increasing revenues? As we address part three of this series
on practice management, we will look at how practice
statistics and figures play a vital role in building and
maintaining a successful business.
Like most people who drive a car or truck I’d venture
to say the two most observed gauges are the speedometer and
the gas gauge. Now take a look at the business of eyecare. I’m
certain the two most observed stats are the revenues in and
revenues out. But there is much more data available just
waiting to be accumulated, analyzed and affected. Keep in
mind that these “three A’s” of statistical management
don’t necessarily have dollars signs in front of them.
If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.
Keeping track of a business statistics is nothing new.
However, an interesting trend has taken place over the past
decade or so - sharing your stats with your team. Indeed it’s
not the accountant who is going to come up with new ideas to
increase patient flow or fill the appointment book. Heck,
the accountant might have trouble advising you how to
increase revenue. As a business owner getting the staff
involved can really pay dividends. We will explore the staff
issue later on but for now pull out your number 2 pencil and
let’s take a look at which statistics to track and how to
As you might imagine, there are many numbers that can be
collected, so it’s important to keep the number of stats
limited in order to not overwhelm yourself or your team.
I recommend the following stats be kept on a regular and
Adjusted Gross Sales
Patient Volume (New & Established)
Revenue Per Patient
Appointments or Production Booked
One of the key elements to keeping stats is consistency
over a period of time. There are two factors to consider
here. First, a stat keeper must be diligent over an extended
period of time. Second, each stat kept should not be
changed. In other words, keep your formula the same. For
example, we’ll use income that’s collected vs. revenue
billed. Either number is fine to stat, pick one and just be
sure to not switch midstream from one to the other. Keep it
consistent. It’s also important to remember that the
benefits may not show themselves in the short term, but over
time, say six months or more, the ability to compare and
contrast will become invaluable as a management tool.
Stat management wouldn’t have the impact it does if you
didn’t have targets to shoot for. A great place to find
production targets is to review last year’s production.
Today’s practice management software typically has the
capability of tracking the aforementioned stats and more.
Over-the-counter financial software is another source for
stat information. Once you have established your stats they
become the baseline and provide the best resource for
strategic management and marketing decisions.
The following numbers are made available as ball park
numbers and fluctuate according to the demographics and/or
geographic traits across the country.
| Adjusted Gross Sales
|| (revenue generated)
| New patients
|| (of total patients)
| Production booked
|| (of available slots)
| Revenue per patient
|| (service & product
"Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase
perfection, we can catch excellence." Vince Lombardi
Stat Management & Team Participation
It has been my experience that getting your eyecare team
to participate not only in patient care but in the
operations of the business brings tremendous value. By
sharing the numbers we’ve been discussing today, your
staff has a better understanding of how the practice
operates and functions on a day to day basis. Your front
line reception team can now take ownership and manage a stat
like production booked. Your dispensing team can take pride
in knowing that they influence revenue per patient. The
entire team can now track and improve an essential statistic
like new patients. The following graphic illustrates how the
entire practice team can track and stat the practice’s
progress. I encourage you to use this tool. It is quite
simple and straightforward.
Hitting on All Cylinders
Unfortunately, the winds of change are blowing harder
than ever. It takes more than just providing good services
and good products. All too often we can become complacent
with our actions and become comfortable with the established
environment. Successful ECP’s are embracing the concept of
working smarter, not harder. As they reach for the next
level of success, they understand where to apply the right
resources using the right people using the right strategies.
Taking the time to manage by statistics can truly take your
practice to the next level.
And Finally . . .
An old and dear colleague of mine, who is an excellent
industry speaker by the way, often quoted a great truism
from his college days as it relates to today’s topic. “There
are lies, damn lies and then there are statistics.”
If you are looking for a effective online resource to
track optometric statistics, you might check out
www.ODStats.com. They have taken stat management to the web
with some great features that allow you to compare and
contrast your own eyecare business with similar practices
across the country.