Published on September 2, 2018
(This is the first of two articles, by Trude Henderson, on the lessons regarding performance learned for multi-location dental practices. Please stay tuned for the second half of this article and more on managing CX in multiple offices at once. – Ed.)
One of the takeaways of ToothFairy’s pilot study regarded inconsistencies in performance between the offices of multiple-location dental practices. Operating multiple satellite offices in addition to a main office is becoming increasingly attractive, especially among orthodontists. They see opportunities to minister to a geographic location that was previously under-served, as well as to boost their bottom line.
The example set by High Reliability Organizations (HRO’s) tells us that, if we wish to improve performance, including the customer experience, and maximize reliability, we must reduce system variability, including the variation that exists between locations. Careful thought, planning and accountability are needed to ensure that all your offices function with minimal system variability (e.g., procedures, communication, guiding principles and training,) because otherwise, you might face unwanted consequences, like higher overhead, an increase in employee turnover and the loss of patients.
During a baseline assessment prior to our 3-year pilot study, we conducted both employee engagement and customer experience feedback surveys of dental practices in the Western United States. The baseline provided invaluable insights and established a basis for comparing the situation before and after our operational excellence intervention. We would like to share with you 4 key lessons learned in the process, in addition to High Reliability Organizational tools and techniques we implanted, all of which helped reduce variability and promote the improvement of the overall brand. They are as follows:
Works CitedBabcock & Wilcox Technical Services LLC. (2008). High Reliability Operations; A Practical Guide to Avoid the System Accident. Amarillo: U.S. Department of Energy.
Fleming, J. H. (2007). Human Sigma: Managing the Employee Customer Experience. Gallup Press.
Fleming, J. H. (2017, August 25). Gallup.com. Retrieved from Business Journal: http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/23953/why-consistency-key-profitable-customer-service.aspx
Jon M. Huntsman School of Business. (2012). The Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence: Model & Application Guidelines. Logan: Jon M. Huntsman School of Business.
For more information about High Reliability Organizational concepts, read our previous blogs
Ten Steps You Can Take Right Away to Improve the Reliability of Your Dental Practice
High Reliability Concepts: Insights of Value to any organization.
Trude Henderson is the co-founder of ToothFairy, a startup elective dental and medical practice improvement software company which delivers an unparalleled customer experience that inspires delight, loyalty and positive emotional connections to improve the lives of patients and the practices they visit. In 2016, she was the first to introduce High-Reliability Organizational Concepts to the dental industry. For questions, contact her directly at Trude@GetToothFairy.com. Follow Trude on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/trudehenderson/ (no email required).
Go to ToothFairy's website: www.ToothFairySoftware.com.
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