How does the veterinary medical search tool Sofie help improve client retention and compliance in addition to practice efficiency? It comes down to more time for exam room conversations with pet owners.

Faster access to veterinary medical answers at the point of need with Sofie certainly saves veterinarians time to help increase practice efficiency. Also as noted by Dr. Mark Stephenson, Sofie helps reduce stress—especially in pressing situations—by reducing or eliminating the need to manually flip through textbooks or search through VIN. Yet Sofie’s time-savings also factor into two additional but often overlooked practice benefits—improved client retention and compliance—because time-savings enable more time for exam room conversations with clients.

vet clinicExam Room Time-Savings and Client Retention

Many pet owners want more time to chat with veterinarians about pet health subjects that may not be directly related to an appointment. Example: In a 2023 study published by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), 96% of dog owners said they wanted to discuss their dog’s quality of life and health assessment tools with their veterinarian. Yet only 32% of pet owners reported the subject being raised by veterinarians.

What was the result when one veterinarian did have the time to chat with a pet owner and address questions about their pet’s health and well-being?

“It just made us really like [the veterinarian],” said a pet owner named Rachel in the NLM study, “because it made us feel like she cared… It wasn’t just okay, bring your dog in, give them a shot, go home,” and when pet owners like a veterinarian, feel heard, and feel part of a collaboration, they tend to stay with a practice (meaning better client retention for practices) and tell their pet-owner friends about their positive experience.

  • “For 84% of customers, being treated like a person—not a number—is very important to win their business.”—Salesforce

Naturally, not all exam room situations lend themselves to general conversations about pet health. In pressing cases like emergencies, for example, the focus must squarely be on the situation, and Sofie evidences its name as Your DVM Assistant by empowering veterinarians with instant online access to the most current, trusted, and credible veterinary medical information to support the best possible diagnosis and treatment of patients. Yet in other situations that do lend themselves to conversations with pet owners, Sofie’s time-savings help enable that time.

In other words, if the average veterinary appointments lasts 20 minutes and Sofie saves you just five minutes, that five minutes represents substantial potential in client retention and, by association, practice revenue related to the lifetime value of a client versus the cost of acquiring a new client.

  • “Acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer. Increasing customer retention by 5% can increase profits from 25-95%.”—OutboundEngine

Time-Savings and Pet Owner Compliance

Time factors into improved pet owner compliance because time allows for pet owner questions. As shown in our recent blog How Client Education Helps Solve Three Causes of Poor Pet Owner Compliance, addressing pet owner questions, beliefs, and/or misconceptions is integral to better pet owner compliance and patient outcomes.

Example: If you prescribe a treatment plan for a pet and a pet owner doesn’t have time during an appointment to consider questions connected to a treatment, questions may come later after the appointment. If a pet owner doesn’t have answers and can’t reach someone at your practice, they may forego treatment, or they may turn to Dr. Google and find incorrect pet health information.

With more time for conversation during an appointment you can:

  • Make sure pet owner questions are answered so they can confidently follow through with treatments and recommendations.
  • Have time to assess what takeaway client education information will help a pet owner feel empowered and supported with home care.
  • Further strengthen client retention by evidencing that your veterinary practice listens and cares about the whole of a pet’s health and well-being.

Sofie’s lightning-fast delivery of veterinary medical information enables all the above (and more).

How Sofie Delivers Veterinary Medical Information So Quickly

Sofie delivers veterinary medical information in mere seconds by what lies at the heart of Sofie—IBM Watson®, an innovative, cognitive computing system that uses augmented intelligence to rapidly search and deliver information from Sofie’s vast knowledge base of over 40,000 pages from the top veterinary textbooks, journals, and conference proceedings. Sofie also includes ongoing updates, so you always have the latest in-demand veterinary information at your fingertips.

To simplify finding information, you simply ask Sofie using natural, everyday language.

Here’s a short video showing you how easy it is

Adding to Sofie’s time-savings, Sofie now includes Vetcalculators to make faster, easier drug calculations.

Designed by a veterinarian for veterinarians and veterinary staff, Vetcalculators includes:

  • 25+ calculators
  • Automatic dosage calculations
  • Add Your Own Drugs
  • 200+ common veterinary drugs
  • Sort and filter drugs
  • Toxicity calculators
  • Constant rate infusions
  • Blood transfusion
  • Generate glucose curves
  • Pain scales
  • Caloric requirements

Veterinarians use and trust Sofie to find veterinary medical information faster at the point of need and increase practice efficiency, which translates into real-dollar ROI. Yet time-savings also enable more time for exam room conversations with pet owners, which helps improve client retention and compliance.

>> Learn more about Sofie