Despite it being an overarching goal for nearly every practice manager, running the best veterinary practice is easier said than done. That’s because there’s multiple aspects to it, including maintaining efficiency, providing staff with the right tools to be successful, and ensuring patients and clients have a positive experience every time they visit.
What if meeting your goal was within arms reach? Here are eight ways a payment system upgrade can help you run your front office more efficiently and get you that much closer to your goal.
Hate having to manage and file paper receipt copies? A payment software like a Virtual Terminal eliminates paper receipts, the time it takes to sort them and the associated storage costs. Your veterinary practice can collect electronic signatures that are digitally stored for quick, future reference. Search by customer name, date, transaction amount or even by a custom field value, such as a patient ID number, to efficiently track patient histories.
Checkout can get busy when there are multiple patients being seen within the same appointment time slot, and using an old-school terminal forces you to have multiple touch points with your clients. Storing cards on file allows you to charge a client with one click after his pet has been seen, eliminating the need for the client to provide payment information or stand in a long line to checkout.
Locating old receipts or adjusting previous transactions for customers isn’t convenient when dealing with paper-based terminals. With a Virtual Terminal that offers paperless transactions and stores cards on file, you’re able to easily modify and access previous transactions without inconveniencing clients or taking precious time out of your day.
Your front office can get hectic if there’s a queue of clients checking out while emergency patients are needing assistance. A slow credit card processing terminal only exacerbates this. With the rise in EMV credit card readers, checkout lines have significantly slowed down, increasing bottleneck at checkout and frustration for staff and clients. An upgrade to a Smart Terminal will get you processing transactions much faster, about four times faster.
Taking phone orders typically requires the client to read her card number over the phone and the veterinary receptionist to key-in the transaction. This process is subject to human error and increases the chance of fraud. The best Virtual Terminals offer remote signature capture for phone payments, arming your veterinary practice with proof of purchase in the case of a chargeback.
It can be inconvenient to bill clients every month for prescription refills, wellness programs or doggy daycare. Recurring billing can automate payments for these services and even help clients break up payments for expensive procedures like surgery or chemotherapy. This level of convenience eliminates unnecessary touch points for clients and gives time back to your practice to focus on patients.
With paper receipts, manual work is needed to get an idea of your practice’s performance, whether it’s day-to-day or over a long period of time. A digitized payment system can provide automated reports for sales totals, batches, and deposits to give you a constant pulse on the practice and its success. Batch and deposit reports simplify bank account reconciliation, while custom sales reports allow you to make accurate projections for the future.
Implementing a new, updated payment system may seem daunting, especially if your practice has high turnover positions or frequently hires temps. Intuitive Virtual Terminals are easy to learn, implement and teach. These payment systems are designed and built in a way that is user-friendly and ready-to-use, no installation needed.
There’s a simple way to eliminate the challenges and pain points you face on a daily basis as a practice manager. Enable your practice with an efficient payment system and all your front-office-related goals will be met.
Do you think any of these features would vastly improve your day-to-day operations? Tell us how below, we’d love to hear from you.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in May 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness and accuracy.