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CASE STUDY

Case study: The best business decision I ever made...

Steve Croston — Owner : Church Road Dental Practice

Steve discusses the reasons why he changed his plan provider, and how with the right support and experience, his practice experienced a seamless transition.


“I had been with Denplan since 1996 but I decided to leave them as a plan provider when I found myself in a situation where I felt I wasn’t getting the level of support that I needed and the practice deserved. I had been through a very lengthy process of buying out my business partner, which meant that I was dealing with all the stresses of transforming into a single business owner and, at the time, I needed all the support and understanding that I could get. The reality was that I felt really let down. 


I’m a firm believer in trust, especially when it comes to business, and ultimately, I knew I needed a strong support system around me. My confidence in my long-term future with Denplan had been shaken and it prompted me to start looking elsewhere. I wanted a provider who would be transparent and stand by the support they claimed to offer me, one who would treat my practice as the individual business it is, with a true understanding of my future goals and plans. I started to ask around and a local practice suggested Practice Plan; they were completely happy with the service and support they were receiving and couldn’t praise them enough. I decided to meet up with Janet, the Regional Support Manager for my area, for a more in-depth chat and there were a few things that I was attracted to. Practice Plan strongly believe in building up my brand not theirs, they would support me to bespoke all my plan literature to the practice, which would help our patients develop a stronger bond with our practice and not a third party. 


Also, I discovered that by switching my plan administration to Practice Plan not only could I potentially gain great business growth benefits, but I could offer a better plan deal to my patients and make a significant saving to my bottom line. Janet didn’t give me the hard sell, but it was enough to convince me that my practice deserved support that went way beyond plan administration. I could clearly see that Practice Plan had the dental plans, experience and passion to provide me with the dedicated support I was searching for to build a strong and sustainable business. Overall, my experience has been exactly that, the guidance that I received from Janet and the whole team at Practice Plan has been second to none. They really are dedicated to supporting the growth of my business. In fact, I consider them to be an extended member of my team. 


I have access to Janet, my Regional Support Manager – a knowledgeable and experienced partner, who has taken the time to get to know me and my practice, who understands my goals and works with me to achieve them. I also have an additional point of contact at head office and access to their really creative in-house design and marketing team who have already provided us with bespoke materials to grow our patient membership. As we continue to partner with Practice Plan, I know that the whole team will have access to lots of continuing professional development via seminars and workshops, which can only help to support my business to grow. 


I’d go as far as to say that Practice Plan has become a partner I can trust to think ahead on my behalf. Dare I mention, GDPR? The regulation that has literally affected every dental practice in how patient data is stored and used. We’ve also been affected by the Insurance Distribution Directive, which changed the way the insurance element of our plan would be organised and promoted. Both of these regulations required careful consideration and meticulous planning to get them right. Practice Plan acted way ahead of time, even offering a dedicated GDPR course to provide sensible and proportional advice to ensure a smooth transition for our patients. 


And talking of a smooth transition, after my business partner left I was conscious that any further changes that my patients would experience would need to be positive. Practice Plan were able to switch my patients across on a capitation like-for-like basis with the minimum of fuss. Within three months we had seamlessly switched over three quarters of our patients which meant that there was no issue with cash flow. I was able to concentrate on the dentistry and rest assured that Practice Plan were busy working on my behalf and contactable if and when we needed them. 


Since switching to Practice Plan I’m now in the place I first envisioned when I took over the practice. I might be a single owner of a dental practice, but I have definitely gained a trustworthy partner, one that is focused on the benefits they can bring to my practice and it’s made all the difference in driving my business forward.”

Steve Croston

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