Is your Audiology Practice Ready for 2023?

As you get ready for 2023, think about your practice’s goals for the new year, consider what worked well last year, and be mindful of upcoming trends. Embrace trends, including implementing integrated technology, prioritizing the client experience, transitioning to the cloud, ensuring data safety and security, engaging employees, and building a winning company culture. Let us help you prepare for 2023!

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Are Important – But Not The Only Important Thing


You are likely prioritizing financial goals, focusing on metrics like sales and profits. Yes, you should track important metrics, like customer numbers, sales, hearing aid returns, and so forth, but also consider other factors critical to success. This includes improving client and employee engagement, providing a warm but efficient experience at your clinic, working diligently to retain clients, and more.

For instance, look at where your sales stem from and how many return customers you’re seeing. Retention is important, as it’s up to 5x more expensive to win new customers vs. retaining existing ones. This means that your return on investment from existing clients is much higher than for new clients. A smart way to boost client retention is to rate the data you have on your clients in your Practice Management Software. You can read our guide on how to increase the number of existing clients to your clinic by activating your client database.

Another great way to reduce your marketing spend is to increase the quality and quantity of positive reviews on Google. When people look for a local service (like audiology) on Google, businesses with positive customer reviews are considered to be more credible and, therefore, receive more clicks and drive more traffic. Ask existing clients for a positive review after every fitting session.

Also, focus on providing more of a “human touch” during your interactions (more on this later). One good way to do this is to ensure that customers and prospects get to talk to a friendly staff member – not your office’s voicemail – when calling during business hours. 

But the single most important thing that you can do in the new year is use integrated technology, like a PMS that can optimize, improve, and streamline all aspects of your operation.

Embrace the Cloud Technology Trend

Cloud Technology

Healthcare cloud computing is expected to increase significantly over the next ten years, and 

Cloud computing is an important trend that your practice should embrace in the new year. Storing your data in the cloud offers numerous, significant benefits, including increased security, accessibility, accuracy, and transparency.

Whether you run one clinic or are part of a multi-unit hearing practice, storing information in the cloud is a smart move. Cloud computing means that anyone in the practice – or working remotely – can access information in real-time, which is extremely valuable when scheduling clinicians, space, or equipment, updating inventory or client records, handling billing and reimbursements, or when conducting home visits and other remote services. 

Cloud technology is becoming more popular within the audiology industry, as it’s become more affordable, accessible, and secure. If you haven’t yet transitioned to the cloud, make that your resolution for the new year!

Staffing Will Remain a Significant Challenge 

Satff Shortage

More than half (53%) of healthcare practices said staffing is their biggest concern going into 2023. A global staffing shortage disrupted many industries – including healthcare – during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Great Resignation compounded the problem.

In fact, during the COVID-19 pandemic, an estimated 1 in 5 healthcare workers left their jobs.

There’s no denying that the past few years have been incredibly difficult. The majority (80%) of healthcare leaders reported their level of stress or burnout increased in 2022, and COVID has contributed to rising burnout since 2020.  Employers in the audiology industry will have to reduce stress, prioritize wellness, and build a positive culture to combat these staffing woes in the new year.

For instance, audiology practices will need to showcase their desirable working environment and spotlight their differentiators (e.g., strong benefits packages, signing bonuses, wellness perks, etc.) to attract, recruit, and retain strong talent. Offering competitive wages will continue to be a strong tactic for hiring and keeping staff.

Unfortunately, many independent practices are finding it difficult to compete with large health systems that can lure new employees with impressive incentives, bonuses, and other attractive perks. Even if your practice doesn’t have the resources of a larger organization, you’ll need to find ways to be attractive to current and potential employees.

Your clinic can attract and retain staff by offering flexibility, innovative technology, training and development, advancement opportunities, and a healthy, supportive culture.

Prioritize data privacy and security

Data Privacy

According to a recent report, 46% of organizations suffered reputation damage due to a privacy breach.

Consider the potential fallout of a data breach for your organization. If a hacker gets into your practice’s network and steals confidential client information – like social security or credit card numbers – this breach could be devastating for your business and your clients.

As cloud computing becomes more widespread in the healthcare industry, data privacy and security should be top priorities. Since you’re storing personal, confidential data – including client records and billing information – take every precaution to protect this data.  

Implement physical, technical, and administrative controls to protect sensitive data. These safeguards are intended to reduce the risk of cybercrimes and minimize unauthorized access. Your system could be compromised by something as simple as a stolen laptop and/or an easy “1234” password that’s easy to bypass.

Talk to an IT expert about other ways to reduce risks, such as utilizing encryption and multi-factor authentication. And just like you’d shred sensitive paper files before throwing them away, do the same with your electronic files, making sure to wipe data from devices, flash drives, and hard drives prior to disposal.  

Work with an IT expert to assess and mitigate your risks. Also, collaborate with the IT professional to develop a response plan in case of a security breach, ensuring that you know what to do to minimize the damage in the event of a cybercrime.

As you rely on technology to do your job, it’s critical to find (and implement) proper solutions to keep your data safe. Get input from an IT professional about how to develop (and incorporate) data privacy and security plans to protect sensitive data and build client trust.

Improve the Client Experience to Increase Engagement 

Happy Customers

To tie the clients closer to your hearing aid clinic and staff, elevate the client experience to ensure that your clients are happy, satisfied, and loyal – and ensure they keep coming back. Build a human connection. Make your clients feel like individuals, not just one more item for your audiologists to check off their daily To Do lists. In countries where people have multiple low-cost alternatives, OTC, or public service, this is an important way to differentiate yourself.

Clients want (and expect) to be treated like people, not just identified by their hearing loss or other symptoms. They crave personal – not just medical – attention, so write down notes about each client in your PMS, so you’ll remember their spouse’s name, their love for golf, or that they have three granddaughters. They’ll appreciate that you see them as a person – and as someone who is more than just their hearing issues and needs. Moreover, it will build trust and make them more loyal to your clinic.

Your clients may be worried about their hearing loss and need your audiologist’s compassion and reassurance. Or they may be confused about the various hearing aid options and will need their clinician to recommend the right solution for their specific needs. They might be anxious about how much the hearing aids will cost them – or be fearful that the hearing aids will make them look “old” – so be kind and caring during every client interaction.

Take the time to shake each client’s hand, look them in the eye, smile, and ask them about their children, grandchildren, hobbies, or recent travels. It doesn’t take long to form this human connection, and your clients will appreciate it tremendously. The cost of spending this little extra time with each client will pay back immensely in lower return rates, higher repurchasing rates, and other critical metrics. Having an audiologist who genuinely cares about them is invaluable to your clients and will keep them coming back – and will inspire them to recommend your practice to others.

Clients Want Seamless, Efficient Experiences With Your Clinic 

Seamless Experience Copy

Everyone is busy these days, and your clients are no exception. Therefore, they want easy, efficient interactions with your clinic. For instance, you should have a strong digital presence that makes it simple for clients to schedule (or reschedule) appointments online.

Since 65% of customers say website experiences are an important factor in determining whether to recommend a company to others, be sure to have a professional, user-friendly website for your practice. Make it quick and easy for your clients and prospects to find exactly what they’re looking for, including your contact information and directions to your clinic.

Also, reduce wait times. If your clients experience long waits, either for an appointment or when waiting in the clinic, they’ll likely get frustrated and may not come back. Demonstrate that you respect your clients’ time. Utilize the scheduling tool within your PMS to boost efficiency within your practice and eliminate long, annoying waits for your clients. 

Client engagement can lead to better clinical and business outcomes, so ensure that each client’s journey is streamlined, efficient, and engaging.

Building a Supportive, Positive Company Culture Is Key

Supportive Company

Just as it’s important to improve the client experience, it’s also essential to invest in building a strong organizational culture and improving employee engagement. 

Your company culture refers to the values, beliefs, and attitudes that guide your organization. This culture permeates your organization, determines the way you treat your employees, and impacts the types of employees that you hire and attract. A strong company culture boosts employee productivity, engagement, and retention.

Make sure that every employee feels valued and heard, regardless of their position within the organization. Embrace and celebrate diversity, knowing that different backgrounds bring fresh perspectives. Let every employee express their opinions and feel empowered to share their ideas.

As part of your positive, supportive culture, recognize and reward employees for their contributions. Recognizing hard workers will encourage employees to continue performing at high levels and will make them feel valued and appreciated. It will also motivate their colleagues to work harder to achieve similar results – and praise – in the future.

Be flexible, recognizing that your employees have responsibilities outside of your practice. Give your employees the opportunity to address things that come up unexpectedly, like a weather-related school closing, a sick parent or child, or a plumbing emergency at home. Be accommodating and your staff will respect you (and work harder for you).

It’s also essential to provide the necessary tools to enable your employees to do their job. For example, invest in integrated Practice Management Software (PMS) that will make employees’ tasks – including scheduling, inventory, purchasing, marketing, and client communication – much easier and more efficient. 

As you establish (and maintain) a positive company culture, be sure to take your team’s mental health and wellness seriously.  Set aside time for team-building activities, schedule regular check-ins with your staff to ask how things are going, celebrate even small wins, and recognize (and thank!) employees when they’ve done something well. Showing sincere appreciation can go a long way to keeping employees happy and loyal.

During these past few years, healthcare workers have experienced massive disruption, upheaval, and resulting burnout. Now, as you consider your strategies for 2023, be sure to prioritize your company culture, making every effort to invest in – and engage – your staff.

Show 2023 Who Is the Boss 

As you get ready to welcome 2023, it’s a good time to think about your audiology practice’s goals and plans for the new year, as well as ways to maximize your successes. Consider what worked well this past year, what should be adjusted moving forward, and important trends for the new year.  

Happy new year from all of us at Auditdata!  All the best to you in 2023!

Contact Us For More Information

Auditdata helps hearing care providers improve clinical care and drive their business performance and growth. Our data-driven, connected solutions help customers in all stages of the hearing care lifecycle.

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