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TOOLS & TECHNOLOGY · March 8th, 2018

Book More Appointments in Less Time

by Adrian Palacios

SENIOR MANAGER, INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS

Broadview Animal Clinic had been struggling with heavy inbound call volume. The holding queue was always full. Wait times were averaging 15 minutes. Impatient callers would hang up and immediately try again. Dialing the clinic directly was the only way to schedule appointments, and like many animal hospitals, staff struggled between managing the phones and focusing on patients in front of them. Broadview needed a way to cut back on call volume during the day.

Then, last summer, they were introduced to OBT — NVA’s new online booking tool.

OBT takes one of the most time-consuming tasks of any hospital manager’s job – scheduling – and passes it on to the client, enabling them to book their own appointments directly online. Clients access the tool via the hospital’s website or social profiles, so it’s easy to find. It’s mobile-friendly and available 24 hours a day, so it’s convenient to use. Users browse vacant time slots, select a preferred doctor, supply a reason for their visit, and they’re done.

“They can’t thank us enough for it,” says Tanya Vasquez, Practice Manager at Broadview. “They love its user-friendly platform.”

Plus, it’s good for business.

After the tool launched, Broadview’s booking rate skyrocketed. In its first week, 200 appointments had been booked online. And they weren’t alone in their success. On average, NVA hospitals using OBT have seen an increase in new clients and after-hours bookings.

“Our hospital sees an average of 500 patients a week, and 15-20% of those appointments are booked through OBT,” notes Junior Chan of St. Francis of Assisi Veterinary Medical Center. “23% are new client acquisitions.”

Laura Yost, Hospital Manager at All City Pet Care West, had a similar experience. “OBT has helped keep our schedule full,” she says. “Current and new clients say it’s preferable to calling into the clinic.”

“Our appointment calendar keeps filling up,” adds Margaret Baty of NorthPointe Animal Hospital. “In fact, it’s become hard for us to book their next appointment at check out. Clients say they’ll just do it online – that it’s easier.”

Sioux Falls, SD – Laura Yost of All City Pet Care West logs on to OBT.

The tool is a hit with clients – 98% percent have left a positive rating. But clients aren’t the only beneficiaries of a more efficient experience; hospital staff has found the implementation process to be simple, smooth and straightforward.

“Our staff loves how customizable it is,” says Tanya Vasquez.

Laura Yost agrees. “After training, we were able to build our calendar and modify appointment types the way we wanted,” she says. “It works very well for us.”

Getting started with OBT takes 30 minutes. After completing a few forms, a test base is created, tailored to each practice’s own scheduling process and preferences. OBT seamlessly integrates with AVImark and is entirely web-based, so no new software installation is required. When the hospital is ready to be onboarded, NVA provides all the support and expertise needed for successful implementation, guiding users through set-up, configuration and deployment. After launch, practices can access tutorials, guides, and marketing resources that help promote the tool among their clients.

“It creates so many benefits for our hospitals,” says Cindy Hoffman, Marketing Manager at NVA’s Support Center. For six months, Cindy has been championing NVA’s online booking tool and has personally onboarded nearly a quarter of its users. “Whether they’re getting more bookings after hours or decreasing phone volume during hours, it’s making people’s lives easier.”

Today, when you visit Broadview Animal Clinic’s website, you will spy a headline, splashed across the top of the homepage: “ONLINE BOOKING!!!” it shouts. To an unsuspecting user, it’s just a link to schedule an appointment. But if you know Broadview’s story, you might say the bold, all caps letters, trailed by a trio of exclamation points are the added marks of someone excited, perhaps even relieved. After all, their life was made a bit easier by OBT.

Live from the Support Center, Cindy Hoffman walks a hospital through their new online booking tool.

Not using OBT? Get started today by contacting Cindy Hoffman at CHoffman@NVAnet.com.

Adrian Palacios

SENIOR MANAGER, INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS

Support Center | Agoura Hills, CA

Adrian serves the NVA community by managing internal communications. Feel free to contact him about the information, business initiatives, stories, and successes our community doesn’t know about yet, but should. He lives in Los Angeles with Finley, a Blue Nose Pitbull, and Madison, a black-nosed-dairy-cow-patterned-bully-breed mix.

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