ConsultantCare is a comprehensive support service that not only manages medical specialists’ basic administration but also undertakes financial, marketing and PR activity on their behalf to help promote and develop their practice.
We spoke to Rob Glass, one of their directors, who is in charge of the company’s Operations, Revenue and Growth to find out what medical specialists are really looking for when running a practice.
What is the question you are asked most often by clinicians?
How can I just turn up to work, have a clinic full of content patients and have peace of mind that everything is running smoothly in the background?
Now of course, this is a ‘blue sky’ scenario but one that a medical professional deserves. Their work is of the utmost importance and they need a clear head and positive outlook so they can perform to the best of their abilities and so their patients can have the best ‘journey’.
Another common question is also about cost, so value for money, just like with anything, is vital.
What are some of the things you can do to make running a practice easier?
Quite simply, the immediate answer is that your necessary functions (administration, transcription, diary management, patient liaison, invoicing/billing/debt collection, marketing, legal and compliance) is all in hand. This may sound difficult, yet it can be painless and relatively straightforward. Communication with employees/company partners is always the biggest positive to a well run practice.
Secondly, transparency and exposure to these functions. Your practice cannot run without the support functions being first class. It is important that you spend time understanding how these are all functioning. Again, it depends on your set up whether this is a headache or not, but either way, its beneficial to stay in control of your support functions. Also, accepting the digital progression that this industry is embracing is essential.
Why should you treat a practice like a business?
Just like any business, you want your practice to be a success. Success comes in different forms i.e. reputation, client size and loyalty, quality of service, pride of service etc. Of course success is also measured financially, which is highly relevant.
To be successful, the business set up, process and functionality needs to be as seamless and efficient as possible in order to ensure the service element works well and so, just because you are an individual does not mean you should treat your practice in any other way than a small, medium or large business would. Set targets, KPI’s, create your USP, brand yourself appropriately, create a go-to-market strategy, have a strong support structure and the rest will follow in turn.
What should you look out for when enlisting outside help with running your practice?
Firstly, a trusted partner. To have peace of mind of who our partners/employees are, we like to see previous success and certain personality traits. The same applies here. Does the outside help feel ‘inside’? What am I tying myself in to, whether it be the burden of hiring someone or a contract you are signing with a company. Always know what the commitment is for worst case scenarios yet also exploring how much opportunity there is.
Secondly, does my outsourced partner tick the boxes of what I need to be successful? What pitfalls might I come up against i.e. is this going to be hard work? Am I going to need to speak to numerous people often? Ultimately, you will need to deliver your ‘back office’ functions whether yourself, a family member, hiring someone or working with an external business, and with the new CMA ruling this applies to all, so it is right to quantify time, relationships and cost to make the right decision. Start as you mean to go on. A smart, well oiled ‘back office’ makes for a successful ‘front office’.
Can you tell me a little about ConsultantCare as a company?
ConsultantCare look after and run the support functions for Medical Professionals. Everything is ‘under one roof’. Each of our clients have a Practice Manager who they build a strong lasting relationship with. We have removed Secretaries (yet with a secretarial service being part of our services) because our Practice Managers deliver all the information to the Consultant and their patients, with a strong team behind them.
Our success is based on the close, personal service that you receive whilst not having the headache of having to employ someone or having multiple outsourced partners. Your Practice Manager is there whenever you or your patients need them and this is what our current portfolio of clients love. The patient journey is paramount, the attention to detail of the back office functions is first class and so the Consultant is able to treat their patients as they deserve.