Communication with the clients is one of the most important aspects of running any modern business but is especially crucial when working in a service-based sector such as dentistry. As such, implementing the right type of telephony system is a vital step en route to success. A growing number of dental practices are turning their attentions to cloud-based telephone facilities, and is a switch that all modern dental offices should consider.
Given the importance of telephone systems in modern business, it’s imperative that you analyze all key aspects of the decision. Here’s everything modern dentists should know about cloud phone systems.
What is a Cloud Phone System?
Before even thinking about the idea of utilizing cloud-based telephone services, you first need to understand what they actually do. Voice over Internet Protocol is a term that describes the technologies and methods used to deliver voice and multimedia communications through the internet.
A hosted cloud system will include the software needed to manage contacts, conduct voice calls over WiFi signals, and send/receive SMS messages. Essentially, then, it can be the all-in-one system used for internal and client communications.
Why are Cloud Systems Useful for Dental Practices?
Cloud systems aren’t simply a new technology. They are powerful platforms that can bring the business into the modern age, unlocking a host of benefits for the dental practice.
There are many reasons why a dental practice may wish to upgrade the telephony systems to a cloud infrastructure. Some of the most compelling incentives are:
Satisfy Client Expectations
The generational shift from baby boomers to millennials and gen Z has been bigger than any other, and technology has been at the heart of it all. Aside from evolving situations in regards to the devices used, client patterns have changed too. For example, over two-thirds of patients no longer answer calls from unknown numbers. As such, sending an SMS and allowing users to request a call back provides a far more convenient solution.
Cloud Systems provide far greater versatility than traditional methods, enabling the dental practice to tailor its services to each client. Moreover, interactions across several devices such as cell phone, tablet, and computer provides a far stronger connection.
Switching to cloud technologies additionally increases the communicational security, particularly when the cloud-based strategies are supported by data encryption, strong passwords, and other protective features. This can inspire greater trust from your patients as well as the employees.
In addition to upgrading the security with the best interests of the business in mind, cloud technologies also ensure that your dental practice complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act regulations, which is another major incentive.
The financial implications play a key role in every major business decision. Hosting calls via a WiFi connection can cut the ongoing costs by removing the need for minutes and other costs associated with traditional telephony.
Switching to a cloud service provider doesn’t only boast the potential to reduce the overheads. It also opens up new possibilities in regards to revenue and further enhances the financial benefits of making the upgrade from traditional phones to WiFi-based communications. Better still, the increased sense of organization can boost the savings further. After all, time is money.
Be Available at All Times
Using a cloud service also enables you to answer calls, even when the office is closed. After all, your cloud infrastructure can assign the numbers and redirect calls to your smartphone or other devices. This added availability can win you a lot of new clients, especially when patients are in need of emergency dentistry and cannot gain access to their usual dentist.
Increased availability can also take your sense of professionalism to a whole new level by taking calls at unconventional times. This can reduce the strain on your business during peak hours, which is another reason for new and experienced dentistry owners to choose cloud technologies.
Cloud phone systems allow you to analyze call information in far greater detail than traditional telephony infrastructure. Whether looking at the generic patterns or interactions with individual clients, cloud platforms enable you to see everything regarding inbound calls, outbound calls, and other interactions such as SMS messaging.
Learning more about the patient journey and which steps result in conversions and increased bookings can have huge influence in the bid to unlock the very best strategies. From streamlining call routes to focusing on the most effective elements, success is assured.
Personalization can have a telling influence on the patient experience, putting their minds at ease and pointing them towards the desired outcomes. Whether it’s through automation, using personalized greetings, or dragging up the client’s history, cloud is the ideal solution.
A cloud system can also be integrated with other tech features such as appointment management systems to avoid the threat of cancellations and other organizational mishaps. Retaining a greater number of clients through personalization will also have a huge influence on the practice’s bottom line.
How to use cloud systems in your dental practice?
While the right cloud service provider can support you through the process, strategic preparations are vital for any dental practice wishing to implement a cloud system in the most cost-effective and efficient manner.
Firstly, your dental practice will need to make a list of all employees that require cloud systems. This process should extend to the number of devices that will incorporate the technology. All devices should be capable of working with any applications or software needed to utilize the new technologies.
Given that interactions will take place over an internet connection, it’s important to ensure that the dental office is equipped with the best online infrastructure. Without it, the quality of the calls will suffer, completely undermining the purpose of cloud technology.
It’s unlikely that you will require all cloud features, which is why it’s important to familiarize yourself with the various options before setting your priorities. This step will also help you stick to your budget.
After ordering the equipment and hardware, it’ll be necessary to ensure that any cables or or network switches are installed.
Appreciating the benefits of implementing cloud technologies is one thing, but the switch is only worth making when you invest the right cloud service provider. After all, this is the only way to gain the full benefits of the modern communication features. Routers are installed with optimum performance in mind. Once configured, you should test the equipment before going live. Ongoing analysis and testing should enable your dental practice to keep the cloud system in perfect health, thus allowing you to reap the full rewards of the telecommunication upgrade.
What to Look for in a Cloud Phone System
Use the following checklist, and you won’t go wrong:
Reputation – You need to place trust in the cloud provider, which is why checking their history and credentials is essential. The use of the technology is only worthwhile when the service is reliable.
Installation and support – A cloud provider that can support you through the implementation and ongoing management of your telephony systems is highly advised.
Key features – Depending on your needs, you may want to look for Caller ID, Live Call Forwarding, Group SMS Chat, Fraud Call Detection, Message Notification, and more.
Price – Cloud technologies should be a smart investment for the dental practice too. When comparing different providers, be sure to factor in the long-term running costs as well as the installation.
Growth potential – Tiered services that can be adapted to your requirements and evolve alongside the dental practice is essential. There’s nothing worse hitting a wall due to the potential restrictions.
The Final Word
Cloud technology is the future of telephone communication for dental practices, and there has never been a better time to implement the modern features.
Thousands of practices around the world have already made the transition and, with the right plan of action regarding infrastructure, goals, and growth potential, your dental office should see positive outcomes too.