Smart Flow Blog

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The best Veterinary Practice Management System – is NOT Practice Management System!

Dr. Ivan Zak Dec 21, 2016 12:32:28 PM Vet Tech

Since we started with Smart Flow, I was asked many times: "Why don't you create your own Practice Management System." And my answer is: "Because I am good at saying "NO". Seth Godin in his book "the dip" describes how most successful people in this world achieved their goal because they were "quitters" – they quit everything else, but their main focus.

We took the same approach to optimization of Efficiency and creation of a true Paperless Veterinary Practice.

How is this related to the BEST practice management system?

Very simple: To create something remarkable, you have to stay laser sharp in your value proposition to your customers, so they have a clear understanding of what your vision is.

 Smart Flow on iPad

Historically, most Veterinary Practice Management Systems tried to create every feature the customer fancied, and their focus went from "best software for ER" to a set of buggy, underdeveloped tools that cannot compete in any real category. Some of them are good at scheduling appointments, others are better with Medical Records structure, other ones have a great "Patient Portal". None of them are good at everything. To pick one goal and become a really good at it is our philosophy at Smart Flow.

Paradigm shift

Currently, veterinary medicine technology marketplace is undergoing a paradigm shift. In his book, "The innovator's dilemma", Clayton M. Christensen describes how every time the market is mature – the disruption comes into play and legacy solutions collapse. It repeatedly happened with taxi business and Uber; hospitality industry and AirBnB; Ford was disrupted by Honda and Honda was disrupted by Hyundai… A paradigm shift is a "Graveyard of old methods" in every industry, and we are right in the middle of this revolution in the Veterinary Technology Sector.

Companies place too much emphasis on customers’ current needs, when they should rather adopt new technology or business models to meet customers’ not yet stated or future needs.
Clayton M. Christensen B.A. M.Phil. MBA, DBA

You are probably sitting in front of your computer now! Please switch back to the screen with your PIMS and try to prove me wrong! Old archaic legacy software products working on "Near-to-DOS" operating systems are not capable of coping with market demand. We are living in the revolution and in 3 to 5-year window server based applications will be completely replaced with cloud technology!

But how do I choose the right practice management system?

You don't! Steve Jobs once said: "People don't know what they want until you show it to them." I would like to modify this statement for our modern society: People want something NEW every minute and it is available right in their pocket. The significant change on the market now is that "there is an app for everything."

Smart Flow Research LaboratoryIn order to keep up with your own "appetite," you need to choose not "the best Practice Management System," but the most connected practice management system. You want it to be connected, or be flexible to connect in the future (technologically and philosophically) with every single program/app/piece of equipment that you would like to use, rather than look for analogy inside of the current feature set. When you are going to select your new disruptive PIMS – ask the vendor if they connect not only with the lab equipment (which may or may not belong to them as well) but if they have an open connection (API, the application programming interface) that allows to "plug and play" into every new App you may hear about at your next veterinary conference.

Stay tuned for new integrations by Smart Flow team!

Dr. Ivan Zak, DVM, BSc, President and CEO of Smart Flow