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January 2009

 

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from Mainstreet Systems & Software...

January 2009

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Three Wise Men, Three Not So Wise

In this month of the Epiphany, we too encountered three wise men...and three not so wise. Here are their stories:

Wise One: Wanting to land a university contract and a large dental group contract, he came to our October training to learn and question. For the university, he asked how he could handle tracking and searching student dentists. For the dental group, he needed emailed invoices, statements and reports. He learned, then landed both accounts against competition from much larger labs.

Wise Two: He has had a history of asking good questions and calling with a prepared list. This month, he asked how to handle multi-stage cases both for scheduling and invoicing and where to find specific sales information in both QuickBooks and DentaLab for QuickBooks. This is a very wise use of service agreement time.

Wise Three: We will include in this the labs who have already taken advantage of our January specials to drum up their business. These include the Image Scanning and Email Notifications Supplements which, for this month only, are available at $200 each, rather than the standard $400. Also available at a special rate this month is DentalRx for online prescriptions.

Unwise One: This was a lab who had been backing up its data to another computer. But that computer crashed a few months ago and they did not switch to another media to make a copy of their data. Then their production computer crashed too. Result: lots of hours will be needed to just get set up again with customers and items and all their histories are lost.

Unwise Two: Because their system ran very smoothly, this lab decided to forego a service agreement and forego keeping their software relatively up to date. Then they decided to plunge ahead and install the latest version of QuickBooks and woops, their other very old software systems were no longer compatible. When offered a way to get it up to date, they said no, too much trouble to catch up with all the changes.

Unwise Three: These are the labs who are always way behind on their basic accounting, having to spend loads of time and money month after month trying to catch up. When asked to consider much more efficient ways to do run their business, their standard thought is that they simply do not have time. This is much like trying to get ahead on a treadmill that goes nowhere.

 

January Reminders

Here in Pennsylvania, we have had a steady beat of cold weather, icey roads and small snowfalls so far this winter season. We want to remind you that should ice or snow prevent us from getting to the office, we can still check voice mail and email for your messages. Please be sure to leave your full name, your lab, your telephone number and message if you would like us to get back to you.

In November and December, we asked whether there was interest in a group training session at Killian Dental Ceramics in southern California. We had only two responses, so with insufficient funding, we had to forego this nice potential.

To help you drum up more business by offering more services to your customers, we are offering during the month of January 2009 these reduced license fees: Image Scanning Supplement $200, Email Notifications Supplement $200 and DentalRx Supplement $1200. There is a definite time limit on these and the offer will expire January 31, 2009.

The third week of January in the USA will be special, beginning with Martin Luther King Day, which has become a national service day, and the inauguration of President Barack Obama with an historic approval of over 80% of its citizens. We hope you will somehow join in the celebrations and the commitments to keep our nation energetic and strong.


 
     

Easy, versatile software for the modern dental laboratory.


 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can we count on Internet web hosts to be reliable places to store data backups and archive emails messages, image scans and other things?

A: Backing up data and other important records to web hosts has become fast, convenient and inexpensive. We recommend this as one way to get this important job done. But would we rely entirely on it? The answer is NO. This is because there are surrounding factors that could jeopardize the ready access to your data. One factor involves the service providers. We know from our own personal experience with Verizon that even though we gave them three months' notice of our move, they left us without Internet service for about six weeks as their own personnel gave different versions of what was happening, when one person said we should be on FIOS rather than DSL service, but another said FIOS cabling was not fully installed in our area, etc. etc. Another factor is security and whether the large scale grids of communication could be attacked or simply run into technical difficulties. We would backup both locally with our own access and control and at a distance should a local disaster caused by the weather, terrorism or something else cause our local systems and backup to become unavailable. There is greater safety in two rather than one.

Q: How much time can using QuickBooks and DentaLab for QuickBooks save us?

A: This can vary by the size of your business and how efficient or inefficient you currently are. On national average, using QB can save a very small business over three hours a week. We would guesstimate that this figure is even higher for DQB, as it brings much needed organization and reporting to the job of scheduling and tracking lab work. For those who spend about $170 for QB and $500 for DQB, the return on investment typically takes less than 2 weeks. Many who have taken these on say to us it is a no-brainer, of course one should do this. One fellow who had procrastinated over two years to move on to this new synchronized technology said he could kick himself for not doing it sooner. He found the software to be "awesome" and very easy, very flexible and intuitive once he finally got into it.

Q: Some others advertise that they integrate with QuickBooks. Is this the same as what you do with DentaLab for QuickBooks?

A: No, our older legacy systems integrated with QB but DQB provides a major improvement because it synchronizes with it. This is how they differ. Integration involves exporting information from one system and then in another action, importing it into another system at certain intervals. Synchronization means the two systems work hand-in-hand as though they are one, so there is no need to remember to do exporting and importing.


 
     

With the same look and feel of QuickBooks.


 

First DQB Release for 2009

The January 2009 release for DentaLab for QuickBooks is in its last stages of beta testing and will soon be posted on our website. It is officially Release 1.17. Here are its main features:

 

  • QuickBooks Customer Fields Rep Name, Type transfer to DQB
  • Case List : Search by Short Memo
  • Transfer Short Memo to QB Invoice
  • New Sales Report: Analysis by Rep Name/Salescode
  • Automatic Printing of Case Materials Disclosure upon Invoicing
  • Synchronization with QB Vendors
  • Price Levels for Vendor Purchase Orders
  • Vendor Alerts and Vendor Preferences
  • Options/Settings for Case Purchase Orders
  • Case List: New Columns Related to Purchase Orders
  • Individual Case Purchase Order
  • Batch Processing of Case Purchase Orders
  • DQB Purchase Order Report

This release provides the start of a new section of Reports in DQB for Sales Analysis (as opposed to Production Analysis) and the automatic printing of Case Materials Disclosure at invoicing to comply with increased legislation and auditing for safety. Previously the outsource work ticket was the main document used when sending work to milling centers and other labs. This release introduces the use of QB purchase orders as an additional document providing pricing and contractual arrangements.

 

Beta-testing in the live lab production environment is a very important part of these user group releases. Our long-standing tradition has been to ask those who have requested an enhancement to also do the beta-testing. We thank all of you who took the time and care to do this for the January release.

Further details can be found at our website www.mainstreet-systems.com in the Support section, then Quarterly Releases, as well as the Help facility built into DQB. Those with up-to-date service agreements may call to get the download codes once the release is available on our website.

 

I Know It's There...Somewhere

One of the really valuable capabilities of computers is the ability to search for information you have recorded in a variety of ways. Both QuickBooks and DentaLab for QuickBooks provide you with many ways to find the information you are looking for.

Sometimes, however, we get support calls saying a certain case or invoice can not be found. In exploring this, we always find that the user did not know how to setup the criteria for searching. In QuickBooks, the Find button is the most common way to find one or more specific records. From the point in the system where the Find button is located, you click this and then are given more opportunities to narrow down your search....by specific fields, by date ranges, by groupings. If working with reports, you can use the Modify and Filter buttons to target the information you are seeking and have it come to you in report format.

In addition, if you have a relatively recent version of QuickBooks, you can turn on the Google Desktop Search feature and specify who can access certain information. Then you can search through your QuickBooks data in much the same way as you would do a Google search on the Internet, by specifying all or part of the text you are hoping to find.

In DentaLab for QuickBooks, we also provide you with many ways to find your case related information, through Find features, many offering both at the beginning of a field or anywhere within a field, through the zoom features of scrollboxes, and in the criteria specifications that are associated with many of the reports. In the latest release, we have added searching by the Short Memo field, which is used in a variety of ways by labs. If you ever find that you would like even more ways to find information, please be sure to submit your suggestions to us.


 
     

Customization is available for all products.


 

Product Costing
Knowing the cost of producing a product or service is essential to any business. This knowledge can become critical if faced with competitive pricing or with opportunities for new business based on meeting price requirements. Cost analysis is an important part of maximizing profits. At times it may uncover ways to reduce costs.

  • Estimate production costs
  • Allows for price experimentation, potential profits
  • Easy to understand samples included to get you started
  • Clear and comprehensive reports
  • Integrate with QuickBooks, DentaLab for QuickBooks, or create your own entries

 

Available now at a special introductory price.

Call 1-800-257-4535 or visit www.mainstreet-systems.com to learn more about Mainstreet Systems and our software designed specifically for dental laboratories.

"Thank you AGAIN!!!!! YOU are the BEST!"

Carol
Hennessy Dental Laboratory Inc.
Florida


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