03. 23. 23
On this episode of The Modern Practice Podcast, host Gary Tiratsuyan is joined by Shirley Devi, Business Development Manager at Rectangle Health.
Shirley gives us unique perspective and insights into the everyday challenges faced by front office staff, having worn many hats in her 18 years of experience at dental practices.
She continues to share how she is now helping practice staff gain back valuable time in their days to build deeper connections and relationships with patients, utilizing software.
Connect with Shirley on LinkedIn.
Learn more about Rectangle Health’s powerful software solution, Practice Management Bridge® here >>
Gary Tiratsuyan 00:22
Without further ado, hello, everybody, and welcome back to the Modern Practice Podcast. I’m really excited about today’s episode as I have the pleasure of introducing you all to Shirley Devy, business development manager at Rectangle Health. In just a second, we’re going to get into Shirley’s experience and the unique perspective she brings to Rectangle Health. But before we do, Shirley, I want to thank you so much for taking the time to join me today.
Shirley Devi 00:43
Yes, thanks for having me, Gary.
Gary Tiratsuyan 00:45
Of course, it’s my pleasure. So, as I mentioned a second ago, your experience and professional journey gives us at Rectangle Health an inside perspective into the day to day for office staff. Can you sort of take me through your experience and the types of roles you’ve been in?
Shirley Devi 01:02
Absolutely. I was fortunate enough to start my career in dentistry that spanned over 18 years. I started off as a registered dental assistant and did chairside assisting for general dentistry and oral surgery. I then moved on to assisting orthodontics and cosmetic procedures. In the meantime, I was also a traveling clinical trainer for intraoral digital scans for impressions. And then over the last five years, I managed specialty practices which included periodontics implant and oral surgery. So I was the one person who wore many hats in this field.
Gary Tiratsuyan 01:47
Yeah, we’ve heard that so often, especially with office managers and front office staff. And that’s a perfect segue because I want to dive a bit deeper here, specifically around that front office experience. What sort of kept you up at night? What were the biggest pain points in your day?
Shirley Devi 02:04
That’s a great question. I would say the biggest pain point was juggling all the aspects of the practice at once, including hiring, training, keeping up with compliance, employee relations, all the while also overlooking insurance schedules, production, marketing, and building patient relationships. A lot of time was spent on billing, calling patients, sending out paper statements, and then following up on those bills and attending to all those important aspects in a day is a huge responsibility and a huge strain on time. I think they all added up to being a big pain point and juggling this in an eight hour day.
Gary Tiratsuyan 02:51
Yeah, and you are not kidding when you said you wore many hats. So let’s fast forward today. In your role at Rectangle Health, are you seeing common pain points? Have they persisted from your time in the front office with the OMS and the practitioners that you speak with now?
Shirley Devi 03:14
These challenges are still consistent, even to this day. The story is the same. How do we manage sustaining and growing a practice? And how do we ensure that we are able to give our best to our practice and to the patients. Challenges still exist in billing. Let’s take Netflix, for example. The billing is automated and it is seamless. The challenge would be how we can make our daily processes or the office manager’s daily processes smooth, just like how automated billing is for any of our subscriptions. There still exists the challenge of no show appointments and the financial ramifications it has on the practice. So yes, these challenges are very much still alive and ongoing.
Gary Tiratsuyan 04:00
Thank you so much for that, Shirley. And we hear it so often and I want to get into solving these problems and eliminating the pain points and not so much from here’s our solution, here’s what it does, but more so, what’s possible, what areas or specific job functions of administrative staff and practice owners alike are you helping improve?
Shirley Devi 04:25
That’s a great question. So what we focus on the challenges stated earlier. We are figuring out how do we maintain the quality patient care relationship while managing demanding administrative tasks that weigh in on a practice manager in their offices? Some of the solutions would be to automate some of these simple processes so that we can free up their time, that we can dedicate to patients in front of us, to the patient on the phone, to the patient in the chair. And we can dedicate that time spent in administrative tasks to getting to know the needs of our new patients. Nothing will ever replace the human element. However, providing seamless processes will build upon that personal experience and that’s the area we tap into.
Gary Tiratsuyan 05:14
I love that. And we often hear like healthcare is late to adopt sort of these methods and processes and workflows that the retail space has adopted over the course of. If we take a step back and look from a 30,000 /ft, perspective, given the economy, given the job market, inflation, rising costs, can you give me a granular look into why addressing these challenges sooner rather than later is so important?
Shirley Devi 05:48
I think that’s such a vital question with our job market, especially since COVID it has been going through rapid changes. In fact, I was managing a practice during the pandemic and had to experience a really quick turnaround of employees due to childcare needs relocation, and the trend is very much continuing. By introducing technology to automate collections and patient reminders, it gives the practice autonomy. It prevents burnout of existing staff during times of transition and training. But most importantly, Gary, I think patients will still be receiving the communication and accessibility they need as well. It is important now no more than ever to provide contactless solutions. I think that’s huge.
Gary Tiratsuyan 06:41
Yeah, and you said it autonomy, but you also mentioned that nothing will replace that human experience. It’s that one to one relationship of the front office staff, getting to know their patients on a deeper level, having those hey, how are you? How was XYZ experience for your family. We know you told us last time you were heading out on a trip or whatever. The day to day for our patients, that real life moments, those connections that could be built, develops longevity, develops that patient loyalty because they have that human interaction. So when we look to build those solid patients relationships with patients, that one to one personalized experience creates that loyalty that I just mentioned. Am I right in saying that?
Shirley Devi 07:35
You are absolutely right in saying that, and that is absolutely true. Patients feel like they are attended to in a timely manner, communications on finances are handled properly and efficiently, and all this that creates a value to the patients. Like you’ve said, it’s relationship building. I’m asking how their vacation went. I am going above and beyond and building this human relationship with them that goes beyond a transaction, but at the end of the day, translates to a better business. A patient loves a well run, efficient practice. To them, it gives them the image that the practice is well trained and competent, increases their trust, and in the long term, keeps them loyal to the practice.
Gary Tiratsuyan 08:18
Thank you so much, Shirley. Before we wrap up here, I want to invite our listeners to connect with you on LinkedIn. As you all heard, Shirley has experience both in the practice and is now helping providers solve for the pain points we discussed today. I will have a link to her profile in the episode description below, as well as a link to Rectangle Health’s no cost assessment tool, which will give you a great look into how powerful our solution can be for your practice and give you back the time to develop those meaningful one one relationships with your patients. Shirley, I so greatly appreciate you taking the time to join me today and I look forward to speaking again soon.
Shirley Devi 08:54
Thanks for having me, Gary. I look forward to connecting with some of you on LinkedIn. This was great. Again, thanks for having me. Once again.
Gary Tiratsuyan 09:01
It was my pleasure. Thanks for tuning in. Next time, everybody. Next time.
Shirley Devi 09:07
Thank you for listening to the Modern practice this podcast. If you enjoyed today’s conversation, subscribe on Apple podcasts, Google Play, Spotify or SoundCloud for new episodes and follow Rectangle Health on social media for more helpful information, news and event details. Thanks for tuning in.