In the age of corporate business, a seven-location practice thrives in Nashville.
Eyecare Plus, owned by Kevin Schmidt, OD, (above) has six busy locations with a seventh being added this month. With a history of shrewd business decisions, Eyecare Plus remains a major player in vision care in Tennessee. In 1990, Schmidt began practicing with one-hour service in two locations, moved them under the Eyecare Plus name in 1993 and has been adding locations ever since.
Eyecare Plus has been expanded to include two Schneider Prolab digital surfacers, small combination units that can be individually operated and function as a lens generator, polisher, digital lens marker and measuring unit. “In-house surfacing has insulated my practice against competitive price changes in today’s market and kept more profit in the practice for all needs,” he said.
A number of strategic business advantages are enjoyed with the implementation of the Schneider Prolab, including quick turnaround time to patients, superior quality control and material costs. In addition to performing its own surfacing, Eyecare Plus also offers in-house anti-reflective (AR) coating capability for the majority of lens choices.
Schmidt and his twelve staff optometrists discuss lens choices with the patient from the chair, documenting their recommendations which are then followed up by the optical staff. By having an in-house laboratory, staff can advise the patient on lens selection from a good, better, best scenario with respect to lens materials and options.
Patient education tools include looped video in the exam room that explains the advantages of digitally surfaced lenses and AR coatings. Eyecare Plus staff members also use OptikamPad electronic technology in the dispensary to take precise lens measurements, present images of patients with selected frame choices and use augmented reality to present lens options.
A cornerstone of the success of Eyecare Plus is that most insurance plans are accepted, so Schmidt puts particular emphasis on frame inventory and price points. Frame prices range from $30 to $800 to give patients a wide range of choices. Inventory includes current designer lines chosen by three Eyecare Plus frame buyers. A strong selection of stylish closeout frames completes the mix. The company has 25,000 frames in inventory with over 1,700 frames being displayed in each location. With time management being a critical factor in business, Schmidt prefers that all major fame buying occur at the Vision Expos due to superior pricing and product selection.
Overseeing a massive operation with 12 doctors and 106 employees is no easy task. To help do so, Schmidt uses OfficeMate for practice management. THE Edge component of the OfficeMate software tracks eyewear sales and further breaks down sales by materials and lens options sold. In addition, frame price points can be reviewed and inventory can be adjusted as required. Staff sales are also monitored to make sure top revenue generators are on the dispensing floor at all times. Incentives are awarded accordingly.
Eyecare Plus doctors also participate in a number of specialty areas, with an impressive 43,000 eye exams performed in 365 days.
Richard W. McCoy, LDO, ABOC, NCLC, is an opticianry instructor at Hillsborough Community College in Fort Myers, FL.
WHERE TO FIND IT:
Eyefinity/OfficeMate • 877.448.0707 • eyefinity.com
Optikam Tech, Inc. • 888.356.3311 • optikam.com