The Veterinary Labor Market Is Getting Tight. How Do I Increase Productivity?

by easyDVM

Prospects are great for up and coming veterinarians, with a 0.5 percent unemployment rate. That news is not so good for veterinary practices that need to recruit staff in this competitive market. One way you can handle this challenge is by increasing productivity of your current employees. You calculate productivity by the amount of revenue produced per hour of veterinary support staff time, or per hour of veterinary time. By improving these numbers, you can avoid trying to recruit more people in a tight labor market.

Automate Business Processes

How much time does your staff spend on time-consuming, repetitive administrative processes? For example, entering data from paperwork, emailing follow-up instructions to patients, and calling for appointment reminders can eat up a lot of the day.

Veterinary software programs can automate many business processes and streamline your staff’s overall workflow. This technology makes it possible to get more done in less time.

Client registration and education are two areas that are well-suited to automation. You can use web-based veterinary practice management software to handle client registration and get all the information you need for the appointment.

Hire More Support Staff

How many responsibilities do the veterinarians have on a daily basis? You hired them to help the animals that come through your practice, not to handle invoices and other administrative work.

The job market for veterinary assistants and other support staff is not as tight as veterinarians. Hire more of these employees so your vets can delegate tasks that don’t fall under their specific job duties.

Increase Veterinarian Pay

Sometimes keeping your veterinarians happy and loyal is as simple as paying them more. Retaining your current workforce is a lot less resource intensive than trying to recruit new veterinarians. Experienced, consistent staff brings a lot of long-term benefits to your practice. Clients form attachments to the veterinarians who have handled their pets all of their lives, which builds up your customer base and referrals.

Provide Emotional Support Benefits

Working in animal care is emotionally taxing, as evidenced by having the highest occupational suicide rate in the United States. Compassion fatigue and STSD are two prevalent problems in this field. Long hours and taxing caseloads can also lead to veterinary burnout.

Emotional support benefits, such as fully paid access to mental health care, support groups and other resources, can make a big difference for your staff professionally and personally. It can take a lot out of a person to handle the types of tragedies that can play out in the practice. When assistance is readily available and accessible, you can help productivity and show your staff members how much you value them.

Train on a Continuous Basis

Give your staff members opportunities to grow their skills in their primary duties and expand their knowledge through cross-training as well. Continued education classes, workshops, in-practice training and other learning resources keep your employees up to date on the latest developments in the veterinary field.

Don’t get frustrated while attempting to hire veterinarians in this competitive market. Focus on the people you already have on-hand by improving their productivity and giving them the tools they need to excel. Whether you implement one or all of the above suggestions, you put your practice on the right path for long-term growth and performance boosts.

EasyDVM Practice Software is a cloud-based veterinary practice management software system. We pride ourselves in offering a system that is user-friendly, easy to learn for new team members, full-featured and elegant in its simplicity. Best of all, all devices, multiple users, all your clients and patients, always affordable.