KPIs - The Marmite of an Optical Practice?
Matt Rumbelow 11//4/23
Practice owners and managers all too often wear the “I don’t monitor conversion rates” badge with a genuine sense of pride. They actively promote the fact to potential employees as leverage to entice away from the multiples. This is caused usually by their own bad experience with KPI’s being used as a stick to beat the staff with, so wanting to avoid them at all cost is completely understandable.
The problem with this approach is it makes it nearly impossible to create and fulfil financial goals for the business. If times are good and profitable it’s important to know the numbers so we know the baselines for a practice so that if things take a down turn we can diagnose where things have gone astray and correct them quickly and efficiently.
The most important thing we need to address is changing the way we communicate with our teams about the KPI’s of the practice. One of your obligations as the leader is to ensure the success of the business and therefore ensure job security of the employees. It’s imperative that the team understand that in order for you to fulfil that obligation you need to know what the vital signs are for the business and that it would be neglectful of you to not.
The discussions need to happen often and as much as possible they should be a cause for celebration and an opportunity to say thank you and well done. If a particular KPI is underperforming then it should be merely a conversation starter with our teams as to how we are going to work together to fix it. By involving the team in that process of reviewing KPIs and making plans to improve those that need it, it will give them a sense of ownership of the plans and will be far more likely to action them.
The golden rule for KPIs -
Never give a team member a KPI without an in-house system that has been proven to deliver the desired result.
Then train, coach and support them until they have mastered it.
As the owner/manager you will need to know what KPIs need to be monitored and what systems and processes within the practice relate to them.
Here are some essential KPIs that should be monitored daily and weekly
New patient percentages
The number that indicates whether the patient database is growing or diminishing.
Appointment types performed that day/week
To ensure optimal use of clinics
Appointment capacity percentage
To ensure the diary is filled to capacity.
Are the Optometrists following a system that makes the most of every opportunity
Dispensing conversion rate
Are the dispensing team able to convert the recommendations made by the Optometrists.
Same day conversion rate
Is the practice able to convert sight tests into dispensing avoiding the need for the patients to come back for the dispense.
Average transaction value
Indicates to you the average spend per patient to ensure the practice is in line with its patient base, local area and profit planning for the business.
Marketing list sign ups
It’s essential to achieve a high sign-up rate for database marketing so that you can invite patients back to buy more often.
This is so that you can constantly be informed on how to improve what you do based on what you patients tell you.
To make sure the practice is turning over enough sales to achieve its business goals.
So rather than avoid them let’s embrace the numbers and make them an ongoing project you and your teams can work together on.