Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Doctors . . . take the roller skates off

Doctors, do you feel like you have roller skates on all day? Does your team complain because they never get a lunch? I see this more and more in the practice mainly due to a lack of structure in the appointment book. However, this scheduling crisis can be resolved with some planning and discipline.

Perfect Day Scheduling is one of the most underused but most powerful features in Dentrix. I have doctors call me and say, “Dayna, my daily production goal is $7,500 per day and our schedule is full every day but we are not meeting our goal. Maybe I just need to lower the goal.” No, you just need some structure in the scheduling process.

I agree that the most important thing that the front office team does is keep the schedule full. However, if all they are doing is putting warm bodies in the chair, this can create unnecessary chaos and unproductive days. Scheduling is like playing chess … it takes skill and patience.

The easiest way I have found to map out your schedule is start with a clean slate. In your appointment book, go out to a week next year and find completely empty days and print out these schedules. First, decide where your new patients will go. If your goal is 20 new patients per month, you will need about five blocks per week. Then block out your productive time for the doctor so that 75-80% of the production goal is met before lunch. Next, in the hygiene schedule across from the doctor’s productive time, I would block out SRP and perio maintenance. This will help have room in the hygiene chair and the doctor doesn’t have to step out to do too many exams. Finally, fill in the rest of the open time with crown seats, single tooth fillings, and other non-productive procedures.

The above recommendation, of course, is a very generalized guide and will need to be customized for your practice depending on how many treatment rooms and providers you have in your practice. This is a great place to start, plus you can tweak it as you go along your journey of productive scheduling and take those roller skates off.

CLICK HERE for more detailed instructions on mapping out your perfect day.

Dayna Johnson, Certified Dentrix Trainer
Dayna loves her work. She has over 25 years of experience in the dental industry, and she’s passionate about building efficient, consistent, and secure practice management systems. Dayna knows that your entire day revolves around your practice management software—the better you learn to use it, the more productive and stress-free your office will be. In 2016, Dayna founded Novonee ™, The Premier Dentrix Community, to help cultivate Dentrix super-users all over the country. Learn more from Dayna at and contact Dayna at

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