Dental data analytics might initially seem intimidating, but they are quite straightforward. By leveraging available information, you can effectively identify areas of opportunity and align your efforts to achieve your goals. This data-driven approach directly correlates with your key performance indicators, empowering you to make well-informed decisions that fuel the growth of your dental practice.
How Dental Data Analytics Feed into KPIs
While dental data analytics and KPIs are closely interlinked, they are not the same. KPIs are your goals; dental data analytics is how you measure progress.
Dental Data Analytics
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Dental data analytics involves the collection, processing, and analysis of various data points within a dental practice.
KPIs are specific metrics used to measure the performance and success of the practice.
As you see in the table, each of the data analysis examples is a process that you would follow. Meanwhile, each of the dental KPIs includes a formula to track your progress. The two work together so you can set and exceed goals for your dental practice.
Choosing the Data to Track for Your Practice
To use data analytics, you will have to power your system with the right information. Tracking specific details in a practice management software system is the only effortless way to manage this. Here are a few ideas for data tracking that you can use to feed insights into your practice.
Keeping track of your patient demographics can help you generate reports around your patient age distribution, gender ratios, geographic locations, and insurance coverages. This information will provide valuable insights into what markets to target and what treatment options to offer.
Appointment data feeds right into the patient’s experience. But it is not enough to keep track of the number of appointments and no-shows. Keeping track of the duration of treatment, waiting times, and other key details can help you improve scheduling, making it more accurate and reducing your patient's time in the waiting room.
Treatment and Procedures
Your treatment and procedure information will tell you about your patient's journey. That starts with tracking prior health data. Unless you exclusively treat toddlers, it is unlikely that your patient has zero dental history. You should port over information from their prior dental records to seamlessly continue treatment. With this information, the practice can analyze the patient file to identify patterns related to oral health issues or medical conditions that impact dental treatment plans.
It will also connect directly to your patient satisfaction results. You can complete patient satisfaction surveys through online forms or paper-based questionnaires. Data from these surveys can be collected and analyzed to gauge patient experience, identify areas for improvement, and measure patient satisfaction based on their specific procedures and treatment plan.
Any well-run dental practice will have a process for tracking accounts payables, and receivables. However, data analytics takes that information up a notch. Using effective practice management software, the practice can review things like revenue trends, collection rates, and key performance indicators related to the practice's financial health. You can also break it down into granular details, like insurance company revenue, patient demographic, or procedures. This can tell you the most lucrative areas to focus on.
The appointment data, patient satisfaction, and treatment results can all feed into your staff performance metrics, giving you a good idea of your highest performers using empirical data. You can also analyze your data by team to understand who works well together and why.
Infection Control and Safety
Any dental practice will have safety and infection control data to track. That is especially true when it comes to bloodborne pathogens tracking under OSHA requirements. With data analytics, you can review these events, locate high-risk areas, and mitigate them. You can also review opportunities for additional training and protocols to keep team members safe.
Marketing and Outreach
Marketing takes up a big part of your budget. Don't you want to see if your efforts are paying off? With data analytics, you can track website traffic, referral sources, and the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.
Tracking patient referral sources, for example, can help you identify the marketing funnels with the highest conversion rates. If most come through your website, you would focus efforts there. If you saw traction on social media, you could make the most of that channel. Conversely, you can see what routes underperform and understand how to improve.
Your practice management software can help you track and improve different procedures. This brings together data, including appointment information, patient surveys, follow-up appointments, and prior health records. This catalog of information will help you assess the patient baseline and compare it to their post-treatment status.
Working with the Right Dental Practice Management Software (DPMS)
Your ability to effectively manage dental data analytics depends on your chosen dental practice management software (DPMS).
Here are some things to look for as you examine your options.
- Real-time data insights: You should get immediate access to data-driven insights to make informed, rapid decisions.
- Interactive reporting: Data visualization through charts and graphs makes it much easier to identify opportunities and trends.
- Comprehensive consulting: While practice management software is a good start, it does not make up for the advice of an experienced consultant. The best programs include a growth coach to help you put your insights to work.
- Data-driven growth identification: Your software should be able to analyze patient data and identify potential growth areas.
- Patient retention management: Built-in tools to manage patient retention can help you enhance your long-term relationships and build a consistent revenue stream.
Ideally, the software you choose to manage your dental data analysis will be comprehensive. That means that you can tie together your treatment, finances, team performance, and patient details into one powerful program that helps you grow your practice. You have all the information you need to make intelligent decisions; the right practice management solution will help you put it to use.