5 Characteristic Effects of a Poorly Designed Schedule

A poorly designed patient schedule template or a schedule that has no design at all but gets filled as you go, can have disastrous effects on how long patients wait, how effectively patients are handed-off to your dispensary staff, and many other things.  Below are 5 characteristic effects of a poorly designed schedule. If any or all of these apply to your Optometry Business, then you should probably take a closer look at your strategy for how you fill your patient schedule.

  • Your mornings start slowly – For example, you schedule your first patient for 8:00 am but you don’t see them in the exam room till 8:20 or 8:30. You stand around and wait while you wonder what’s taking so long to bring the patient back.
  • Patients arrive in waves – If you were to stand behind your reception area, you can see patients arriving two or three at a time, followed by a lull of no patients at all for a while. If you have a practice with more than one physician per day, this may be more pronounced.
  • Morning and afternoon humps – Your office begins to get fuller and fuller until you are over run with patients around mid to late morning and then the process repeats itself around mid to late afternoon every day.
  • Your exam rooms fill up and then empty out – There are times when you walk out of your exam room and you look down the hall way and all the doors are closed because there are patients waiting for you in every room. Similarly, there are other times when you walk out of your exam room and all of your rooms are empty but there are patients waiting in the waiting room.
  • You have mixed success handing patients off to your dispensary staff – Sometimes you can hand a patient directly off to your dispensary staff either in the exam room or the dispensary.  At other times you try to hand a patient off and no one responds to your call.

If any of the 5 characteristics above apply to you, you’re not alone. Scheduling issues are so prevalent in fact that in the hundreds of eye care businesses we have worked with across the U.S. and Canada, we have never left without redesigning the schedule!

If are working in these conditions, then it’s time to take a closer look at your schedule design.  You are missing out on an opportunity to improve patient flow, increase capacity for more patients, and dramatically improve capture rates and revenue per patient in your dispensary. 

Here’s what we offer with our Scheduling Optimization Program:

  • A discovery session with your Business Advisor to discuss scheduling issues and identify specific goals for your eye care business
  • A thorough analysis of your current model for scheduling including your templates, phone call, and appointment confirmation process
  • A report providing you with specific root causes within your current schedule that impact patient flow
  • A new customized schedule template for your eye care business
  • An implementation plan for how to put your new schedule to work, while managing pre-appointments and other patients that are already on the schedule


You can try to design your own schedule, but why not receive support from the most experienced scheduling experts in the industry.  We are here to support you.  Through our Scheduling Optimization Program, our team of highly skilled analysts will review your schedule, provide recommendations, and build a customized schedule template for your office.

Starting at $1800, its more affordable than you thought, and the real question you should be asking yourself is – How can you afford not to do it?

For more information on our Schedule Optimization Program click here to contact us and learn more or give us a call at (904) 701-3084.




Tony has utilized Lean Management concepts to help foster a culture of employee driven continuous improvement at more than 400 Eye Care practices across the United States and Canada. His approach has generated significant revenue growth, cost reductions, and operational efficiency within these practices, while also improving staff accountability and engagement.

Posted in Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *