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March 2013

DentaLab NewsMarch 2013
from Mainstreet Systems & Software

FAQ  DentaLab News

 

What is the best compliment you have ever received for your work?

We have been asked to develop an editorial on the customer relationships between the labs and the dentists.  We would like to hear your thoughts on the effect of compliments and other recognitions that show respect for your work.  Do you find, for example, that you take extra measures to please those who recognize your value and take the time to tell you?

If you can recall one or two of what you consider the best compliments you have received from the dental offices, please also send them along to forums@mainstreet-systems.com or by replying to this newsletter.  Let us know if it is OK to add your name and lab or if you would prefer to remain anonymous.

Thank you!

Lots more conveniences coming your way

Much of the work we do in creating your software is toward the goals of making your life easier, saving you from wasting time and from having to do grunt work, letting you do what you do best to serve your customers.   Here are some of the new features under development for the April release, all having come from suggestions by those working in the lab:

  • Adding new information to your email notifications for specific actions required by the dental office, shipment tracking numbers and links
  • We have begun the work to provide a more detailed invoice history for each case in DQB at convenient spots for easy lookup and review.  This is a large project that will continue on into the July release.
  • Extending the capability to customize which columns will be shown in the case item grid
  • Providing a new link to enter QC and shipment information while in an individual case record.
  • Adding shipment tracking web links for more carriers.  The list now includes Australian Post, Fedex, United Parcel Service, U.S. Postal Service.


Until March 31, these special offers are still available

Through the remainder of this month, these are our special offers for you:

1) If you purchase a license to the standard DQB version or two additional users at $600, you will have a choice of a 50% discount on one of the $400 supplements such as image scanning or notifications or free tuition for the spring group training session.

2) Those licensing the starter DQB version at $400 will be offered free tuition at the spring group training session.  

Also by March 31, please let us know about spring group training

We would like to determine by March 31 a date for group training this spring here at our offices in Pennsylvania.   We have already started a list of those interested and would like to know if you woulld be interested in coming to this.  If yes, please let us know the dates that would be good or not good for you and how many from your lab would be coming. 

 

  Easy, versatile software for the modern dental laboratory.

To Answer Your Questions

Q:  We will soon be updating to Windows 8.  Will DQB run with this?

A:  We have installed DQB on our newest computer station and have been testing it in this environment.  To date, the only issue we encountered was having to adjust the firewall settings to accomodate Windows 8.  Some of the labs in our user group have already updated and have reported no problems or incompatibilities.

We have found the combination of Windows 8 and a new computer to be much faster than any of our stations running Windows 7.   Our initial reaction is that for the same applications you would tend to use your smartphone, such as internet browsing, checking email, the news or the weather, the tiles provide a very nice interface.  For the behind the scenes functions that we as developers need to address, such as user account controls, security, communication links, device management, Windows 7 is still our favorite environment.  

 

Q:  Are other labs giving their dentists access to their database?

A: Those who are using DentalRx or a customized version of this are setup to be secured web hosts and do give their customers who have been authorized access to DQB to submit prescriptions, requests pickups, send graphics, as well as lookup the status of their own cases in the lab.  The access is controlled by the lab and limits each dental office to only  their own information.   All of those using DentalRx have chosen to use their websites as the portal for this access, which provides benefits for providing information and marketing their services.   Recent versions of QuickBooks services also provide for online/mobile access to certain functions such as submitting payments and viewing transactions. 

At this point in time, a greater number of labs use the email notifications supplement to let the dental office know which cases have been received and are in progress in the lab and which cases have been completed and shipped within the last week.   In the upcoming release, we will be adding action-required messages and shipment tracking codes and links as part of this notification.  In addition, the lab can add general messages to each report to provide for news and marketing.   

      With the same look and feel of QuickBooks.

Tried and true vs. new

When it comes to communication between the lab and the dental office, we often encounter different views as to the best way to do this.  Some will vote for the tried and true--in person visits, telephone calls, written messages included with a case.   Some will say the internet is the only way in this modern world, through websites, through emails.

You will find, as we do, that the customer often expresses a preference.   Some will say just call me.   Some will say send me an email since I can check these at intervals rather than interrupting my other work.  What we recommend is that you use your software with its many abilities to support any and all types of communication.   Use the note-taking features to record the preferences whenever these become known for each customer and then be sure to tune into these whenever an issue needs to be addressed or you want to convey information. 

Software is particularly good at eliminating your need to do grunt work.   If information has been recorded, it can be accessed quickly by a variety of criteria.  If you receive a document, it can be scanned and associated with an appropriate record such as a customer or a case.   If you are sent electronic images, this works for them too.  

If you or your customer prefers in person visits or telephone discussions, having accurate up-to-date information right on the spot can help to assure that your communication is smart and effective. 

For work that is matter-of-fact with no extra issues or matters to be discussed, some of the newer ways of communicating such as email notifications of cases received and in progress and cases completed and shipped can take care of the communication in an automatic cost-effective way. 

Websites have become a vital resource for communication beyond contact and marketing information when you establish portals for the dental office to send in prescriptions, make requests and check the status of their cases on their own.

If you asked for our personal preference between tried and true vs. new, we would say a nice blend of both.


For case entry, lots of possibilities

From those who really tune in to the capabilities of DQB's case entry and scheduling, we receive many accolades.  It has even been cited as the best in the industry.  We find in our support calls, however, that there are those who do not realize what it can do.  Some, having experience with other dental lab systems, continue to do it the way they did it before.   Sometimes we receive calls asking whether we would consider adding a feature that has actually been there right in front of them all along.   So once again, here are some of the highlights:

There are two levels of dates for entered cases.  One consists of the critical dates near the top such as entered, start, end, ship and requested dates.  The system will provide defaults initially, but you can overwrite these.  The entered date will be the current date.  If you entered a standard for your request dates in Option/Case Settings, this will be applied. 

The second level is to automatically schedule the case items.  If you have selected a standard procedure to setup the items, the pattern of days will be followed.  If you add an individual item,  the default number of days will come from your entry in Basic Lists/Items.  A number of factors are involved in the automatic scheduling process:

  • The schedule factor you have established for each item in Basic Lists/Items determines the difficulty/time loading into the master schedule.
  • The master schedule for each work center determines the limit on the number of scheduled units per day and records the units already scheduled.
  • The holiday schedule you setup determines if there are days for which work is not to be scheduled.
  • You can use any combination of standard procedures and individual items you wish.
  • You can add, delete or edit case items or, using the up and down arrows, change their sequence.
  • You can choose to stop scheduling after any one of the case items to send the case to the doctor.
  • You can override the schedule at any point and request an automatic rescheduling of the remaining items.
  • You can check the work center schedules at any time to determine how booked they already are.
  • Once you schedule the case items, the end and ship dates at the top will be set to match the schedule.
  • You will be alerted if the ship date plus the number of days to ship to the customer will not meet the doctor's request date.

Always available from our website www.mainstreet-systems.com in Suppot/Knowledge Base is a link to our blog on dental lab software.  We urge those who want to become more knowledgeable and efficient in case entry, scheduling, patient safety and other case issues to take a look at the topics in this blog.  Let us know if there are even more topics you would like to have us address.  


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Contact us at 1-800-257-4535 or www.mainstreet-systems.com.

"I think that it (DentaLab for QuickBooks) is an awesome application."

Angela Thalassinos
Giorgio Dental Laboratory Pty Ltd
Victoria, Australia


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