In this regular column, ODC checks in with veteran O.D.s to get their best time-learned tips for what they wish they knew when first starting out with a buying group or optometric alliance.
Juawana Hall, O.D., has been in private practice in Winston-Salem, NC, since 2005. She is also a member director at IDOC, responsible for leading the Winston-Salem territory, supporting local IDOC members, and facilitating study group meetings.
What was her process for selecting an optometric alliance?
“I was looking to save money on cost of goods and to improve practice efficiency. After researching several groups, I found that IDOC gave me the largest return on investment in terms of discounts and rebates,” says Dr. Hall. “It seemed like a no-brainer.”
What other benefits attracted her to IDOC? “After you add in free admission to their conferences and study groups, plus the education and consulting, the value far exceeds the cost,” she says.
Your own priorities will guide the search for the best alliance for your business.
Here, Dr. Hall shares tips on finding the right fit.
—Stephanie K. De Long
GOOD TO KNOW
Founded in 1999 by Mark Feder, O.D., IDOC is an optometric alliance with over 3,000 independent optometrist members.
“The single most important thing to look for is a group that aligns with the vision of your practice. Most companies can save you some money, but few will truly propel you toward YOUR vision for success.”
“There are a lot of groups out there with various pricing strategies. Read the fine print and make sure you aren’t locking yourself into something that will be a drain on your practice in the future.”
“IDOC is always adding partners and innovating with new programs to bring value. A group should work hard to keep your business.”
“In a growing practice, growth rebates are amazing in the short term, but that level of growth becomes unsustainable at some point, as you max out on your ability to see more patients.”
The game changer?
“LOOK FOR EXPERTISE IN KEY AREAS.
At IDOC, for example, having industry experts in finance, practice management, optical, marketing, and human resources is a game changer.”