What Independent Dental Practice Owners Can Learn From DSOs

Melissa LuVisi
September 17, 2020 | 3 min read

The competition between DSOs vs Independent Dental Practices steepens as Covid changes the market landscape. Patient centered is more important now than ever.

Whether independent practices want to admit it, the industry is changing. Covid is forcing doctors into retirement opening ample acquisition opportunities for DSOs and independent practices. I’m not trying to scare people, but economics is what it is. If independent dental practices want to compete with the growing DSO down the street, they will need to improve their dental patient journey. The reality is that DSOs can provide faster and more efficient care while independent practices struggle to manage their inefficiencies. 

Here are more blogs with practical tips to start addressing inefficiencies in your dental practice:

At tab32, we believe in and encourage having a growth mindset. According to the ADA 60% of patients don’t go to the dentist. That was pre-covid! There is a lot of market opportunity, but to capture that growth, independent practices first need to sure up their existing patient base (Tips for re-engaging unengaged patients). As business owners, marketing campaigns take time and energy which all require bandwidth. That bandwidth is being bogged down by old server technology,  multiple third party integrations and a deep resistance to change industry wide.

In-office servers will not be serviceable in the next 5-10 years. The average lifespan of a server is 5-7 years. Investing in server based technology is akin to investing in a first generation iPhone when the world is working on the latest and greatest technology. It puts practices at risk not only for ransomware but gives a significant disadvantage in a fast changing market. 

Multi-tenant cloud computing is the future. This type of technology has only been around for 5-6 years- think when Google Drive came out. Dentists aren’t technologists and not understanding how fast hardware expires is costing thousands of dollars over time.

Server based practice management platforms will hit a glass ceiling when it comes to innovation. Why do you think they partnered with so many third party vendors? The technology their platforms sit on are limited to the tech decks they were built on 20+ years ago.  Unless a company is committed to re-writing as they go they will eventually phase out.  If Apple hadn’t cannibalized the iPod, we wouldn’t have smartphones. 

Dell and HP, the world's largest hardware companies, understands this which is why cloud computing as an industry is projected to grow by 17% in the next year. It is also why Dell pulled back going public and completely restructured their business model a few years ago.

tab32 was the first cloud-based dental practice management software to have a fully integrated communication system. tab32 is founded by healthcare technologists with years of experience in engineering, medical informatics, machine learning and security from the University of California. We are talking about supercomputers at UC hospitals! Make no mistake, we are building the technology of the future.

Growing up in a small town, I have a heart for small business owners. A business is like building a house, you have to have a strong foundation to weather the years. If you cut corners to save on cost, you end up paying for it over-time in patchwork repairs and solutions. The question isn’t only “what can the software do for me today” but “where will it be tomorrow”. Short term investments for long term solutions are not the answer. It's time to think more like a DSO and invest in a software that will grow and evolve with you! Click here or below to book a demo today.

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