How to know when to dump your plan provider

Janet Mason gives her top tips for spotting a bad plan providerJanet Mason is urging you to take the opportunity to assess the state of your professional relationship with your plan provider.

When running a busy dental practice, it’s sometimes difficult to see whether external services are putting in the effort. Below are some ‘red flags’ that could be a sign your professional relationship with your plan provider is starting to turn toxic.

The old ball and chain

Your plan provider should be proactively helping. Not only should it help the financial success of your business with regular income, but it should also make your work life easier with support to help your membership grow.

When did you last time receive new ideas, inspiration and tips from them to boost plan numbers?

Further to this, as a plan provider, they should be forward thinking. They should make their service as easy as possible to navigate and support you through legal and regulatory barriers.

Do you feel informed and supported with changes to regulatory requirements that could impact your business, such as the Insurance Distribution Directive and General Data Protection Regulation? If you feel kept in the dark their impact, it may be time to break off the shackles.

They’re from Mars, you’re from Venus

Do you feel like your provider no longer understands your business goals and hasn’t adapted their service to help you achieve them? Over time, your goals might change and a lack of flexibility may hold you back.

Perhaps the plan provider you use won’t support you with your own branded plan membership. This can detract from the loyalty you are trying to nurture with your patients by enforcing their own branding instead.

You no longer feel the love

When you feel like you’re a small fish in a big pond and they aren’t taking the time to nurture your practice, it may be time to start looking at other options.

Are they responsive? Are they answering your calls? Are they putting in time with you to train your team in making the most of your plan membership?

Do they come back to you promptly and do their upmost to help you through the problems you face? Be wary that your plan provider isn’t taking advantage of your professional relationship.

They’ve changed

Plan providers that begin to lose their identity with a high turnover of staff can indicate an unhappy workforce. They also negatively impact you, as lack of consistency turns to lack of understanding.

If you have felt dissatisfied in terms of the marketing strategy or changes to the branding, perhaps their service is no longer suitable for you and your business. Their marketing communications and changes to their brand identity should be aimed towards improving your relationship.

When it starts to have the opposite effect, they clearly aren’t taking your needs into consideration.

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