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Centaur Solutions enters the world of analytics with a bang!

Published on : 12/9/2022

The Australian dental sector has always been an uber-competitive one. However, it has enjoyed greater levels of consistency typical of the overall healthcare sector. So much so that the dental industry was among the handful of industries considered ‘insulated’ during the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. Fast forward to 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic has thrown the rule books out the window. No single business sector was immune to what the pandemic had in store. Infections, endless lockdowns, and fear of the unknown, among other reasons, forced our industry to a grinding halt.

Centaur Solutions enters the world of analytics with a bang

Now that we are somewhat on the other side of the pandemic, it’s time to look forward to seeing what the future holds. The 2022 IBISWorld Dental Services in Australia report forecasts the 10-billion-dollar Australian dental industry to grow by 5% in the next five years, while the number of dental businesses is expected to increase by 25%. The good news is that the dental industry is back! The not-so-good news is that the competition is fiercer than ever.

When looking at this landscape, it would remind one of Maximus from the movie Gladiator. “Survival of the Fittest” is the name of the game. Is the playing field equal? Far from it. As the presence of non-dentist-owned dental business entities continues to increase in the market, even the smallest dental business must arm themselves with the right toolkit if they plan to tip the scales in their favour.

With Centaur Software being an industry veteran in the Australian dental space, we are acutely aware of the challenges faced by our dentists during and after the pandemic. Understanding the industry landscape led us to work tirelessly since 2020 on the quest to arm our practices with the ‘Maximus Armoury’. The result of these efforts is our grand entrance into the world of analytics.

It’s common to miss the key difference between strategy and tactics, even among the most business-savvy. While strategy is the overall action plan that takes you where you want to go, to the end goal, tactics are the individual steps that will get you there. The two types of analytics required to succeed in business differ in a similar way. They are Business Intelligence and Operational Intelligence.

Business Intelligence (BI) – the school of analytics that supports strategic decisions (e.g., increase the number of chairs in the next two years, open another location in the next five years, increase the value of the practice and retire in the next seven years). BI lets you understand your business from a holistic perspective, identify trends and strategise accordingly to bring you closer to your overarching business goals. The typical users of BI are practice owners, managers and management consultants.

Operational Intelligence (OI) – the type of analytics that supports the tactical decisions in the day-to-day running of the business (e.g., the amount of whitespace in the appointment book for the next seven days, patients with future appointments, booked vs unbooked recalls.) OI allows dental practices to operate in the most efficient way with a clear understanding of the current status quo of the business. The typical users of OI are the operational teams ranging from front desk staff to clinicians and practice managers.

On our quest to arm Centaur practices with all they need to compete in this game of survival of the fittest, we posed the question – What type of analytics does today’s dental practice need? The answer is simple; to implement successful tactics and strategies in your business, you need both Business and Operational Intelligence.

As a pioneer in the practice management space, we understood that our strength lay in practice operations. We had the know-how to provide our practices with the best-in-class operational analytics. Fast forward two years, in 2022, we launched Practice Insights (a complimentary module in our Dental4Web platform) which delivers operational Intelligence, and DentalBI (an integrated platform in collaboration with the global analytics leader, Practice By Numbers) which delivers business intelligence.

Keeping on with the Gladiator theme, DentalBI is what helps you win the tournament, while Practice Insights is what gets you through one duel at a time.

The next five years will bring about a game of survival of the fittest. Are you going to be one of the few still standing victorious in the arena when it’s all said and done? The choice is yours.

About the Author

Sean has 18 years of experience in the Australian Dental Information System industry and currently works as Head of Product and Innovation at Centaur Software. Sean holds a Bachelor of Applied Science from RMIT University and a Master of Business Administration from Swinburne University.

Sean is a passionate data analyst who loves everything data. Sean spends most of his time doting on his little daughter Amelia outside work.

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