5 ways to keep your practice ‘on point’

Here’s why cloud-based dental practice management software is the best way to stay fresh with ever-changing technology.

My daughter recently commented on a shirt that I was wearing for an Independence Day barbeque. “That shirt,” she said, “is really on point.” Of course, I was not sure if I should run and change my shirt or wear my shirt with gusto. Seeing the perplexed look on my face, she clarified: “Your shirt looks perfect for the occasion!”

Always the one to learn something new, I asked how she defines fashion to be “on point.” She collected her thoughts and said, “It’s about being fresh and relevant at the same time. You’re wearing a nice shirt and wearing it at the right occasion. You’re on point!” And with that, she patted me on the arm and walked away.

Taking a clue from my daughter, the key points to being hip and cool with your dental practice—and therefore being vibrant with new patients, having healthy recall, and growing production—are freshness and relevance. So I ask you: Is your practice on point?

Bloodred shag carpet and wood paneling in the reception area are clearly not on point. That’s easy. But what about technology?

Like shag carpet, technology you purchased five or 10 years ago is not on point. It’s not helping your practice. The current technology standard is cloud-based computing. The advantages of being on the cloud are fresh and relevant to today’s work environment. Here are five reasons why.

The cloud is easier on your budget

As a service, the cloud won’t take a huge bite out of your wallet in up-front licensing fees. Instead, a monthly subscription provides your practice with everything you need: software, upgrades, data security, and technical support. Additionally, the hardware requirements are less demanding than what is required for client-server software. You’ll save money on hardware and you won’t invest in outdated technology, such as a server.

Better protection of your patient information

If your patient information resides on a server in your practice, you must worry about security. And chances are you’re not an expert on data backup and security. On the cloud your data is secured by professional digital and physical security. Your data is stored in professionally managed data centers—as in plural—and on more than one server. Because hardware will fail, Curve Dental designed its systems around redundancy. On the cloud you’ll never worry about a server that crashes and a backup that won’t restore.

Data accessibility is the hallmark of the cloud

Whether you’re at home, on vacation, or at Grandma’s house on Thanksgiving Day, all you need is a computer and the internet to review patient notes, charts, balances, and x-rays. And regardless of where you access the data, the user experience is the same as if you were at the office—which brings me to my next point about lifestyle.

Lifestyle and workstyle compatibility is king

The cloud works hand-in-hand with a stop at the coffee shop before you get to work to review the day’s schedule. The cloud makes it possible to put family or personal interests first by letting you mold professional responsibilities around life’s priorities. When you’re away from the office and a patient calls, the cloud helps you review medical and prescription histories before making another call to the pharmacy.

The latest and greatest tools at your fingertips

Unlike dental software that requires a server, you never hassle with upgrades. Keeping the software current and the database healthy is not your task—it’s the vendor’s responsibility. Your role is to practice dentistry, not hassle with IT. As a result, whenever you or your team uses the software, the latest features and tools are always at your disposal.

The technology you choose to incorporate into your practice is as important as the type of restorative material you prefer. Just as you’re careful to make sure you’re on point when it comes to using the best materials to treat your patients, you should never neglect your technology!

Andy Jensen has been in the dental software business since 1992. He is VP and chief marketing officer at Curve Dental, a software development house that delivers 100% cloud-based management software for dentists. Andy recently completed a book, How to Build the Killer Practice on the Cloud, that can be downloaded at curvedental.com/killer-practice-de.

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