Saving money is important for all businesses, but especially for dental practices.
As we all know, dentistry is a vital part of healthcare. Dental practices provide necessary services that help keep people healthy and maintain their oral health. However, running a dental practice can be expensive. With costs for supplies, equipment, staffing, and overhead, it’s essential for dental offices to save money wherever they can.
According to the American Dental Association, fixed expenses, like rent, insurance, taxes and utilities, should account for about 4-7% of production. Variable costs, such as payroll, lab fees, dental supplies and office supplies, should run you around 45-55%.
Let’s explore some ways you can save your dental practice money.
Use cost-effective dental supplies
One way to save money is to use cost-effective dental supplies. Find less expensive alternatives for products like dental floss, toothbrushes, mouthwash, and other non-clinically sensitive products. Also look for bulk purchasing options that offer discounts.
If you partner with a dental group purchasing organization (GPO) you can save thousands of dollars on the supplies you know and love.
SourceClub is a dental GPO that offers clients a subscription-based pricing model with no hidden commissions or continual up-charges. With this flat rate subscription model, SourceClub is able to deliver their dental office members the best prices possible, regardless of their size.
By keeping the cost of supplies down, you can maintain affordable services for your patients. Dental care can be expensive, and patients are often forced to pay out of pocket for services that are not covered by insurance. When you save money on supplies, equipment, and overhead costs, you can reduce the overall cost of services and make them more accessible to your patients. The more accessible your services are to your patients, the more patients you’ll gain – the more patients you gain, the more profitable you become.
Manage inventory efficiently
Keep a close eye on inventory and order only what is needed to prevent waste and unnecessary expenses. Implementing an inventory management system, such as a tag-out system, can help monitor supply levels, track usage, and identify areas where money can be saved.
SourceClub has helped dental practices consolidate their formularies and decipher which products are clinically sensitive vs non-clinically sensitive. It’s a plan that works, there’s no need to keep ordering several different types of bibs when you can consolidate it down to one style, from one supplier. The GPO also provides a complimentary procurement software to centralize all your supplier purchases – saving you time and money!
Saving money can improve the bottom line for your dental office. When you reduce your costs by managing your inventory, your practice can increase profitability and reinvest those savings into the business. This will lead to growth and expansion, and ultimately, better patient care.
Implement energy-saving practices
Back in the day your parents may have told you to turn off the lights since you weren’t paying the electric bill, well they might’ve been on to something. Implementing energy-saving practices in the dental office can help reduce utility bills. Turn off lights and equipment when not in use, replace old equipment with energy-efficient models, adjust the office thermostat at the end of each day, and make sure the office is properly insulated.
You may not see a huge return on your investment with this one, but pennies equal dollars!
Consider outsourcing services
Outsourcing services such as accounting, marketing, and IT can save money compared to hiring in-house staff. This can be more cost-effective, and the service provider can bring specialized expertise to the practice.
Most dental GPOs offer additional services such as procurement softwares, marketing support, continued education, group insurance, and practice management. They are your one stop shop for everything your practice needs to run efficiently, but more importantly, be competitive in the industry.
By saving money with outsourcing services, you can set that money aside for unforeseen expenses. Emergencies, equipment breakdowns, and other unexpected events can be costly, and having money set aside can help you weather these challenges without disrupting patient care.
Use technology to streamline processes
Investing in technology or software that automates manual tasks can help streamline processes such as appointment scheduling, patient communication, ordering, and billing. This will improve efficiency, reduce errors, and save time and money in the long run.
As mentioned above, some GPOs can offer your dental practice technology and softwares to help you with these office tasks.
Saving money can help dental offices stay competitive in a crowded market. By keeping costs low with these methods, you can offer more competitive pricing and attract more patients. This can help you grow your patient base and establish a stronger reputation in the community.