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Monthly KPI Dashboards: A Powerful Tool for Your Dental Practice

Jun 3, 2023

With patients to care for and a dental team to lead, it’s easy to overlook the financial details of your dental practice. But pausing each month to review key performance indicators, or KPIs, can empower you to make strategic decisions, both for the financial and clinical sides of your practice. A KPI dashboard gives you a way to easily incorporate this review into your monthly routine

What is a Dental Practice KPI Dashboard?

A KPI dashboard can be described as a one-to-two-page graphical summary, or chart, that gives you a high-level snapshot of your practice’s clinical and financial performance. Although its format is nothing fancy, the information it provides can be a goldmine for savvy practice leaders. Best of all, a KPI dashboard is tailored to include the data that’s most relevant to your practice’s goals and challenges.

Knowledge, as we all know, is power. With easy-to-understand, concrete data at your fingertips, you can compare your dental practice’s performance to goals and/or prior periods to see if you’re on track, or if you need to make changes. You can also compare your practice to other similar practices by making use of available market data.

Here are a few examples of the data you might want to include on your monthly dental practice financial KPI dashboard.

  • Your practice’s financial data
    • Simply knowing your practice’s collections and expenses—and how these numbers compare to your goals—can give you powerful insight into your practice’s performance. Accounts receivable metrics are critical, too. Tracking these KPIs, such as the number of patient accounts past 90 days, can help you address collections issues before they become major profitability problems.
  • Overhead costs per clinic hour
    • Knowing your practice’s overhead costs per hour can help you make strategic decisions about scheduling and create efficiencies during patient visits. For instance, say it costs your practice $500 per hour to operate. If you’re open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., you’re spending $4,000 each day just to keep the doors open. Now, with this in mind, you can optimize the number and type of procedures in your daily schedule, as well as set guidelines for the time staff members should spend with patients, to ensure your practice’s profitability.
  • Hygiene production as a percentage of total practice production
    • Ideally, your practice’s hygiene production should be 30-33% of its total production. If your numbers aren’t there, you might not be achieving enough variety in your procedures. Doing prophy after prophy can keep your hygiene department busy, but it may also be a red flag that necessary periodontal procedures are being overlooked. Having your practice’s production data readily available allows you to ask the necessary questions, identify opportunities for improvement (i.e., implementing periodontal therapy and/or refresher training on proper coding), and determine a course of action for your team.
  • Marketing ROI
    • Say your practice just ran a billboard advertisement for dental implants in a new geographical market. To help you gauge its effectiveness, you can track the number of new implant patients by zip code. Reviewing this number on a monthly basis can help you determine your return on the investment.

Put Your Dashboard Into Action

The more you know about your dental practice’s clinical and financial performance, the better business decisions you can make. A monthly KPI dashboard, despite its simplicity, can give you comprehensive insight into your practice’s performance, as well as the ability to identify trends and make comparisons. With this knowledge, you can take steps to enhance your practice’s profitability now—instead of waiting until the end of the year to see the results of your tax return.

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Libby S. Hornibrook

Libby Hornibrook is a Partner in the Health Care Services Group. She provides accounting and consulting services to clients within the health care industry.

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