The aim of improvement works to your premises or moving to a new premises should be to attract new patients and retain your existing patients. Consider the points below when thinking about how you will achieve this:
- How can I make the visit more convenient for clients? Consider access, location and parking.
- I want my “brand” to shine through – how will I do this? This is much more than your logo on the wall – consider the friendly yet professional image you wish to create in your clients mind. It is critical to convey this accurately to your designer so that they have an accurate feel for what is required.
- How will I help the customer to feel comfortable and confident, even though they may be feeling a little apprehensive? Consider neutral colours, nice chairs, something to watch or read and good acoustic management so that confidentially and also a sense of peace and quiet is preserved .
- What services do I need to be able to offer to clients now and in the future?
- Am I allowing for growth in my business so I don’t have to move again in 5 years?
- It’s not all about the customer either. You need a practice that’s efficient and pleasant to work in for your staff morale.
- It’s a great idea to sketch out the common tasks of staff and make sure that everyday tasks are going to be simple and efficient in your layout. You may be able to sit down with a plan and just think through how each task would be done.
- Are my staff facilities comfortable and pleasant and to some degree separate to work areas so staff can have a genuine break onsite?
- How can I make sure things are going to be easy to organise and very importantly – easy to keep clean and looking nice?
- Remember if your business is a pleasant place to work in you will attract and keep the best staff in the industry and these same happy staff will go the extra mile to ensure your customers enjoy their visit.
- How will you manage the process? At Cyclo we find each customer prefers to have a different level of input into the project. Some clients are happy for someone else to manage the whole process and would just like to walk into a finished project. Others like to manage every detail and be an integral part of decisions right the way through. The main thing is to choose a team who is happy to work with you on your approach. You also need to carefully consider how much time you can allocate to the project.
- Making sure your design is up to scratch is critical to minimizing changes during construction. We hear and read of designers who think it’s the clients fault and others who think it’s normal for a number of changes to be made to the design during construction. We find that putting the extra time into the design stage, with actual samples and 3-D Images of key work areas is an excellent way to assist clients in making accurate decisions which don’t require major adjustments on the run. Remember – a job well planned is half done.
Working with a builder who will give accurate costs at the design stage is also a fantastic tool which helps you keep control of your project without having to micro-manage. You should also choose a builder with experience in the industry and check how they will manage design changes.