Our last blog post focused on the differences between appointment requests and real-time online booking, plus why a veterinary clinic should consider online scheduling. A factor to consider when implementing online scheduling is whether or not the system can be tailored or customized to your specific needs. Since no two practices are the same, what works for another practice might not work as well for you.
A notable feature of Next In Line is that it is 100% customizable for practices. Let's explore all that this type of scheduling can bring to your practice. We're also going to cover how you can use forward booking and cluster scheduling with Next In Line's online scheduling feature to increase revenue and better satisfy your clients.
It's What Your Customers Want
Do you enjoy calling a business to be put on hold, or told you aren't the first person in the queue? Probably not and you are not alone in that regard. Studies have shown that clients want more than ever to book their appointments with service providers online. This is due to the convenience to the clients and the time it takes to schedule something. With limited time in their day, clients want to be able to go online and within seconds or a minute accomplish their task, rather than being put on hold or spending 5-10 minutes on the phone.
With Next In Line's online booking platform, you can take advantage of being able to optimize convenience to the max. And even though online scheduling may be viewed as a complex form of technology, it isn't. In fact, there is very little to do once it is set up to mirror your practices needs.
With online scheduling, clients can go online 24/7, even at 2a.m., if they are awake, to see what open appointments you have. If you want to land new clients, then putting in place a customized online scheduling platform should be viewed as a necessity.
Enhanced Workflow for Your Staff
Staff spend countless hours each week on the phone, either answering customer questions or booking appointments, and manually entering client data into your practice management system. These hours add up, leading to high expenses for booking appointments. Imagine being able to slash the amount of time, and money, you spend on scheduling appointments and data entry. Not only can this free up some of their time to focus on other core operations, but it also enables them to deliver an even more personalized experience to those clients in the practice for appointments or following up with other patients who were recently seen.
No one likes walking into a practice only to be greeted with a waving finger telling them to hold on until the staff hangs up the phone. With online scheduling, your front office will spend less time on the phone and can provide each client who walks through the door with the care and attention they deserve. This will lessen the amount of stress your front office workers endure as well as enhance the overall customer experience for both those scheduling appointments and the ones who are in the office waiting to be seen.
How Can Next In Line Be Used With Forward Booking?
Forward booking is a concept that can be put into action that requires all pets to have their next appointment scheduled before they leave your office. There are too many clients who leave the office stating they will book their pet's next appointment once they get home, yet they never call to set it up. In doing this, you lose revenue and your patients lose out on receiving the quality of care they deserve.
With forward booking, no pet leaves the office without having their next appointment scheduled. Even if the client is unsure as to when he or she can bring in the pet for the next appointment, one should still be scheduled. When clients are leaving the office, simply let them know they can go online at any time and change their scheduled appointments using the Next In Line portal. This ensures all pets have a future appointment scheduled and it's an excellent way to introduce new clients to the Next In Line platform. It also showcases that you prioritize convenience for your customers and because future appointments are scheduled, this increases revenue for your practice.
How Can Next In Line Be Used With Cluster Scheduling?
With cluster scheduling, you do your best to keep all of the appointments bunched together as much as possible. This allows you to maximize free time in between appointments to help ensure you don't get behind schedule. It also allows your office to, at times, have periods of a few minutes without clients present to enable staff to get caught up on voicemails, administrative tasks, and keeping the practice clean.
To implement cluster scheduling, you use a single appointment as the cluster base. From here, when using forward booking, you will give customers the option to choose between certain time periods for their next appointment. For example, let's say your cluster base appointment is scheduled for 10 a.m. The next appointment that you book using forward booking, you will give them the option to come in at 9 a.m. or 11 a.m. The client gets to choose between those two time slots.
You will still inform the client, however, that if the time is not convenient for them, they can always go online and change the appointment using the Next In Line web-based application. Remember, the ultimate goal here is to please your customers. Without enhanced levels of customer satisfaction, your clients will take their business elsewhere.
Are you ready to learn more about how Next In Line can be customized to your needs and help improve the efficiency and profitability of yoru practice? If so, or if you have any questions on how Next In Line’s other features, feel free to request a demo.