In my opinion, with the experience I’ve had in offices, the Scheduling Coordinator position is one of the toughest in the office; IF it’s not handled correctly.
An empty chair isn’t always a bad thing. I’ve been told that an empty chair can generate up to quarter million dollars in revenue per year. A practice can use this chair to put the emergencies that they might otherwise not be able to see and they go down the street to another office that can accommodate them. As you have probably seen, an emergency exam can generate anywhere from $100 to $1,000 plus in production.
On the other hand, though, an empty chair can hurt a practice if it’s because of a last-minute cancellation or no show. If it was a hygiene appointment, we’ve not only lost the hygiene production but the restorative work generated from the hygiene exam. 65% of diagnosed treatment comes from hygiene. In addition, we have to book that patient another hour appointment resulting in the same amount of production for double the time; plus, the time to possibly having to call that patient and rebooking.
Also, lost revenue causes what we call the “break-even point” to take a hit. The break-even point is what it takes to pay the bills each month. For instance, what if takes $50,000 to pay all the bills and it takes 3 weeks to produce that much; that means the fourth week is the only week you make actual profit. What happens if that fourth week falls apart with empty chairs; or, you have empty chairs in the first three weeks? You won’t even have a full week of profit.
As I mentioned earlier, there are ways to train the Scheduling Coordinator to know the right way to keep the schedule full. AMP can suggest different ways to schedule, use your software to create lists of patients due for treatment and how to use Facebook to alert patients of an opening. In addition to training, a person needs to be tenacious in getting the job done; just OK is not enough. The empty chair is not going to fill itself. Lost revenue has an impact on every person in the practice from the doctor down.
If you would like more information on keeping schedule full, and revenue coming in, give us a call and speak to one of our coaches!!