4 audiology practice management hurdles and how to overcome them


4 Audiology Practice Management Hurdles And How To Overcome Them

A hearing clinic is a complicated operation with all sorts of moving pieces and daily challenges. Fortunately, there are workable solutions to many of the industry’s most common blockers. We’ve pulled together some reliable practice management approaches that can help you avoid getting slowed down by four familiar hurdles: Client satisfaction, Balance price and cost, Employee management and Keeping records.

Client Satisfaction

Keeping your clients well-served and happy is the ultimate goal for any clinical practice. Most of us got into this field with the goal of helping people with hearing impairments enjoy a better quality of life. Furthermore, maintaining a base of satisfied clients is one of the best ways to keep your business thriving and growing via word of mouth. In a field as personal and complex as hearing care, personal recommendations from trusted friends and relations will always go farther than any advertising campaign. Lastly, happy clients are more likely to buy their next hearing aid at your shop, thereby keeping your marketing spending down and repurchasing rates high.

Client satisfaction in an audiology clinic is about more than just strong customer service. Especially in today’s connected environment, it requires a consistent, active communication strategy. Developing a system for contacting both potential and current clients in timely ways that are engaging but not overwhelming is essential to your success. That might entail phone calls, emails, mailers or text messaging or various combinations thereof. It also entails improving the physical experience of your services from reducing waiting room time to investing in better teleaudiology measures to requiring extra training for your staff.

Auditdata Manage helps keep clients satisfied and engaged with an easy-to-use dashboard that consolidates all essential client information on a single screen. Managing your appointment calendar, keeping track of maintenance for hearing aids and other devices, viewing medical histories, and other crucial functions are simplified with an easily referenced practice management software that puts all of your clients’ most important information right at your fingertips.

Free Guide

Marketing Guide For Hearing Care Professionals

To help owners, regional managers and marketers to improve their outgoing communication, we have created a marketing guide with a complete end-to-end customer journey starting with your customer insight and data. Our guide is about increasing your in-shop traffic, converting more prospects into clients, and retaining those for life. 

Learn more

Balance Price And Cost

Cost-benefit-customer alignment is a major concern in every healthcare decision. This poses a delicate challenge for audiology practices about balancing the cost-benefit when presenting the right hearing aid solution to the client in front of them. Moreover, for the clinic owners, it is important that you understand the clients, consult them and motivate your audiologists to make the highest returns or your business and reach the highest possible client satisfaction rates.

Understand your clients

A good advice to be able to hit the right price point is not to go on autopilot. Mind that not everyone wants the same, so it is important that you understand what challenges the client has and how to solve these problems. Rather than always selling the most expensive equipment, understand the requirements, challenges, lifestyle and price range from the clients before you make the recommendation. In your Practice Management Software you should make sure to insert all the knowledge you have about the client to stay relevant, informed and equip all employees to give a personalized service. From call-center, to audiologist, receptionist or other staff facing your clients.

Consult to the client to make the best decision

When you get to the solution suggestion part, don’t oversell to the client. If the client cannot afford a certain price-point, you should not sell here. But to consult the client the best possible solution and price for this individual, explain the consequences of buying the cheaper model and what situations the client will still experience difficulties. Not over-selling may lower the price per unit, but on the other hand it will increase conversion rates and lower return rates.

Handle objections about OTC

From time-to-time a client will likely ask you about alternative solutions like OTC (over-the-counter). Those types of inexpensive hearing aids may be easier on the budget, but they are also more likely to end up letting the consumer down in terms of comfort, durability, and addressing their specific hearing needs. It is important to let patients know that a hearing aid isn't just a one-time investment. Buying a cheaper model may seem like saving money up front, but in the long run it will be more cost effective to purchase a model that comes with the ongoing support only a dedicated audiology professional like you can provide. Making personalized adjustments, offering resizing, and providing hearing tests are all benefits which online retailers can't offer.   

Motivate the audiologists

The most important factor in the sales process is the audiologist who is key into generating sales from the leads you have attracted to your shops and the sales you get from re-purchasing clients. It is therefore important that you have an incentive program for your audiologists. This should motivate them to strive for increased in-shop conversion rate for new clients, Balance average selling price (ASP) per product to make sure the clients will not return. The measure points you should use are:

  1. Net sales of hearing aids: Incentivize your audiologists to increase the “quantity” of their sales. This KPI should be measured on net invoiced sales, i.e. subtracting any returns for credit
  2. Net ASP per invoiced client: Incentivize your audiologists to maximize sales value of each of their sales transactions, i.e. maximize the combination of ASP per product, binaural rate, sales of accessories and other after sales services. The audiologist will thereby be rewarded for up-selling, whether to a product at a higher price-point, a binaural set of hearing aids, sales of an (additional) accessory or an after-sales service package.

Balancing these factors with grow the revenue of your business - but be aware to not have too many measure points in your program this will demotivate the audiologistS. With a BI-analytics tool you can easily track performance of your audiologists and benchmark performance across shops, staff, regions etc.

Employee Management

Any business is only as good as the people who work there. That definitely includes audiology practices, which should make finding, hiring, and keeping high-quality employees a top priority for any clinic. While audiology fortunately doesn’t see quite the high levels of burnout and turnover that other medical fields deal with regularly, it is still a demanding field that requires very specific skills, training and education. Finding employees who fit those parameters can be a real challenge.

Many of the same lessons that apply to patient satisfaction also apply to effective employee management. A reliable system of communication tools that allows your workers to keep in close contact with both management and clients is a crucial part of keeping up employee engagement and boosting workplace morale. Technology plays a major role. Investing in software solutions that improve workflow, offer data-driven insights and give employees easier access to patient information makes your business much more appealing to quality employees and makes it easier to onboard new staff and roll-out processes. By the same token, high-quality, easy-to-use hardware like audiometers, hearing tests, and loudspeakers keep both customers and employees better satisfied.

With Auditdata Manage and Measure, your administrative team can keep your employees feeling empowered and appreciated via more efficient management. Our intuitive dashboard makes it easy to keep track of everything from work schedules to supply stocks to business analytics, creating a smoother, more stable work environment. An organized and efficient workplace is one that employees look forward to coming back to every day, which makes for a more harmonious practice for everyone involved.

Keeping Records

A hearing health practice generates a lot of data, and keeping that information well-ordered and accessible is a lot of work. Not only is being able to quickly and correctly access patient records vital to your own day-to-day practice management, it also raises a number of compliance issues. Depending on where you do business, there are regulations governing what kinds of records your practice needs to keep, what format you are required to keep them in, how long you are allowed to keep them, which employees are allowed access to them and many other factors.

This slate of compliance requirements makes it all the more crucial to have an efficient, easy-to-use records management solution in place. There are still too many audiology practices relying on outdated methods such as filing cabinets and paper records. Even a small audiology clinic needs an automated, online recordkeeping system that brings all necessary information under one umbrella and can run automatic checks for compliance with all local and national data privacy regulations.

With Auditdata Manage, you will be able to pull role-based reports that will allow you to measure audiologists and locations against KPIs as well as sales performance against budgets, so you can identify areas of improvements.

The product sales report lists all sales for each category by clinic and by location within each clinic, including subtotals for each. The report can be produced in summary or detail and can be printed to PDF or exported to Microsoft Excel for further analysis. Alternatively, the report can be run as a Margin Analysis report comparing sales to costs to determine a margin.

Ready to start leaping your practice management hurdles? Get started today.


Don't Miss Out On the Latest Insights On Audiology 

Sign up today to receive exciting updates, tips, and the latest newsletters from Auditdata.