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May 2018

DentaLab NewsMay 2018
from Mainstreet Systems & Software

FAQ  DentaLab News


The magic of May

After a nuisance winter, here in Pennsylvania we are enjoying the beauty and wonderful weather of May.  In an incredible run, we have had a new sale every work day so far this month.   We are finding that labs are choosing DentaLab software because of our customer service, having a choice as to which internet services they use and how much they control the confidentiality of their business information, having a voice in the system and being able to customize.  As always, having the accurate and up-to-date accounting that comes from true synchronization with QuickBooks is also a factor.  

Near the end of the month, our offices will be closed on Monday, May 28 to observe the USA Memorial Day and a start to the summer season.     

DentalRx Direct is now included in your service agreement

We been very pleased that a number of labs have signed up to have DentalRx Direct as a service that they can offer to their dental offices to submit prescriptions and digital documents via the internet. 

Although having this capability is part of your service agreement, there are additional steps to be performed:

  • The installation and setup must cover the security standards to be in compliance with HIPAA and computer industry standards.   Mainstreet will initially perform these steps and will work with you to maintain the standards required.
  • You will need to mark which of your standard procedures or product groups (or both) are available for the dental offices to create prescriptions.
  • You will be given options to review and mark such as screen colors, which DentalRx services you want to provide, whether you want to include your logo.
  • If you want to provide for transfer of digital images/files, you will need to implement the DQB Images supplement if you have not already done this.
  • You will need to provide authorization for each doctor who will be using the service. 
  • You will need to train your staff to go to the Case List and set the Entry By criteria to DRX to find and review the cases submitted via DentalRx.

We have developed a template for a guide you can provide to the dental offices that will be linking to DQB.   We recommend that you begin by submitting a few cases via DentalRx yourself, then choosing an initial small number of doctors you want to have this service.  Then when you and your staff are ready, you can launch a full-scale effort.  

Those who have been using the website versions of DentalRx have found that in addition to providing more services to their customers, there are very worthwhile benefits for the lab such as:

  • Reduction in remakes and adjustments due to clear communications and easy-to-read prescriptions. 
  • Most of the case entry process is completed at the dental office.  
  • For digital cases, submission is very fast with no wait for physical materials to arrive.   
  • For traditional cases, you can pre-book time in the schedule before the physical case arrives.
  • Since the dental office can lookup current and history cases, there are less telephone interruptions at the lab.

Let us know if you would like to begin.  You can also let us know if you need to bring your software and its support up to date to take advantage of all that DentalRx Direct offers.

Time has proven their value

Having been a major developer of software for this industry for a number of years, we have seen many trends on their upside and their downside.   Some that have swung one way and then back are these:

DELIVERY OF CASES:   At one time, almost all cases were delivered by local drivers.   Then as labs began serving wider areas, the trend was toward using delivery services such as UPS and FedEx first for distant locations and then even for deliveries just a few blocks away.   We are now seeing a definite move back to use of local drivers so that cases do not get lost or misdelivered.  Pickups and deliveries can be combined and having a friendly trustworthy driver adds to the lab's reputation for great service. 

SOFTWARE SERVICES:  At one time most labs did not have their own computers so they handed over all their paperwork to services that generated invoices, reports and statements.  As personal computers hit the market, labs were very happy to bring their computer services in-house and in their own private control.   Then as the internet rose in capability and popularity, vendors began offering web-based software as a service so that labs could enter and view their records from anywhere. using the vendor's server computer.   But then the major software companies developed features so that it was easy for any computer to be the web host that any mobile device such as a tablet or smartphone could access from anywhere. This also meant that the software systems with strong reliable code and rich features could continue and be accessed from anywhere.

BACKUP AND CONTROL:   At one time, labs with their own in-house system had to remember to backup their information.   Then the web-based services enticed labs to use their services saying they would never again have to remember to backup.  Once again, software was developed to provide for automatic backup protocols so that each lab could determine the schedules and contents of backups, the levels of security, and a choice of one or multiple backups to one or multiple locations or devices.

CUSTOMER SERVICE:   At one time, many labs had a close working relationship with their customers.  The labs owners and their families often delivered and picked up cases to the dental offices and they had many opportunities to talk to one another.   Then as other delivery services and digital technology emerged, there were far less personal communications and far more standard computer scripts.  For some matter-of-fact information,  using the computer to check status worked well but when more discussion or addressing of issues was needed, it became very frustrating to find solutions having only standard scripts.   Now we see that the labs who have continued to succeed are the ones that make sure they make time to take care of whatever special requests their customers present to them as well as offering more benefits and services.

Let us know if you have any more to add to this list.   Let us know also if you would like to know how the DentaLab software and its supplements work to provide support for both the time-honored traditional and most up-to-date techniques and protocols.


  Easy, versatile software for the modern dental laboratory.

To answer your questions....

Q: For a case item, can we show something different than the QuickBooks description on the invoice? 

A: Yes, the item description on the case invoices developed in DQB can be edited in any way you choose.   You can change the basic description or append more information to it, as you wish.   This can be done in the options for single and sequenced batch invoicing and if you turn on the option to review each invoice in batch invoicing. 

Q: Can we setup to have our customers directly pay for their QuickBooks invoices online? 

A: Yes, you would have to first establish your lab as a merchant with QuickBooks Payment Processing.   This will take care of directing the funds to your bank account.  Then in QuickBooks/Edit/Preferences for Payments, indicate that you want to allow your customers to pay online with a credit card and/or bank ACH account.  This will provide for an option on the invoice screen to have a message added on how the customer can pay online.  

Payment processing provides for many forms of payment that you or your customers can use.  Using this service will incur transaction fees. Because this involves use of Intuit servers, you will be required to keep your version of QuickBooks up-to-date at least once every three years.

Q: We would like to switch to DentaLab for QuickBooks. Can you transfer any of the information from our current system? 

A: Yes for most other software systems, particularly if you can export your information to an industry-standard format such as Excel, CSV, SQL  If your software is using a non-standard data format, we would need to explore whether there are any technical specifications available.   The tables most critical for transfer are your customers, items (products and services) with pricing, and your open accounts receivable balances.  Next we check for the possibility of transferring customer preferences, special price levels, case invoices.   From the success we have had with transferring for several systems, we have developed a protocol that can be adapted to capture as many of the fields in the DQB tables as possible.

      With the same look and feel of QuickBooks.

Having a choice and a voice

One of the reasons so many labs choose DentaLab for QuickBooks is that it includes a wide variety of choices for how you handle your case and accounting management.   Many choices are built in to the system through the Basic Lists, Options/Settings, Reports Criteria and User Roles/Security. You can also request a custom version for any form such as work tickets, case labels, invoices, packing lists and quality control feedback or for any report/query. The program will always check to see if there is an entry in your Custom Reports folder to use before proceeding with the standard version.

You can also choose to use as much or as little of the cloud-based services that are available through QuickBooks (such as payment processing, bank transfers, email transfers, payroll) and through DQB (such as email notifications, DentalRx prescriptions submittals, transfers of digital files, automatic backup protocol, and remote access via MyQuickCloud or Amazon Web Services) .

We are always open to new ideas for the general release but you can also request customization for your special goals or requirements.  We try to keep everyone in the standard release as much as possible because this is far less expensive than a completely custom version.   Typically the reasons for choosing the completely custom route have been greater use of one or more languages, different scheduling and tracking methods, and having country-specific regulations and compliance requirements.  

We urge all of you to give us your voice whenever you think of a new possibility, a new approach to understanding.   We offer tutorials on YouTube, special educational topics in the blog section of our website,  a searchable user guide from the Help button in DQB,  white papers on special topics, personal interactive webinars, visits to our offices, and communications via the telephone or email....all to help you understand and to lead to discussions on how your software can be very valuable in support of your efforts.


Thinking about continuity

Continuity most often comes in to play if a business is sold or transferred to someone else.   This could be because of retirement, death or simply the wish to move in another direction.   There are other scenarios, however, where the need for continuity is temporary.   These can include accidents, sickness, family medical leave or simply a long vacation for you or a key member of your staff.

It is, of course, best to address continuity long before it is needed and to keep your protocols and documentation up-to-date on a continual basis.   The entries you make into your database using DentaLab for QuickBooks on a daily basis can develop into a tremendous resource whenever continuity is needed.   Taking a few extra minutes to make sure your records are as complete as possible will be one of the keys to the success of your planning.   This is particularly true for:

  • Customers along with their preferences, alerts, communications
  • Items along with any special pricing, materials disclosure lists
  • Standard Procedures for controlling workflow and processes
  • Cases along with digital files, case plans, communications, histories
  • QuickBooks invoice histories, sales and accounts receivable, inventory and purchase orders

Note also in your continuity plan that whoever needs to pick up the responsibility and continue on can look to the resources of Mainstreet Systems for both general information and knowledge of your specific system and support history.

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Contact us at 1-800-257-4535 or

"I could kick myself for not doing this sooner...this system is awesome!"

Dale Dramstadd
Doctors Dental Lab
Minnesota, USA

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