By: Messina Sinn | October 23 , 2017
Upgrading your veterinary software can sometimes seem like an unnecessary hassle. After all, if your practice management system seems to be working fine, why spend valuable time to change? While it’s good business practice to consider a software upgrade in the same light as any other investment, the risks and benefits are sometimes hidden.
Think of a software upgrade in the same way as vehicle maintenance. We often continue driving our cars well beyond the “next service” date, even though we know we may be asking for trouble. There are no warning lights and everything seems to be running fine, so we rationalize by asking ourselves whether we shouldn’t just put off the expense and hassle.
It’s only later, when we eventually end up having to take our vehicle to the mechanic with problems, that we are presented with a big bill of potentially avoidable expenses. We’ve all felt that sinking feeling in our stomach when the mechanic shakes his head and says, “You should have brought it in earlier.”
Software upgrades work in much the same way. Being proactive in upgrading your veterinary software programs can help improve security and efficiency and prevent problems like computer crashes. Here are four good reasons to keep your veterinary software up to date.
1. Increase practice productivity
A software upgrade allows you and your team to make the best use of the latest features available in your practice management software. This includes using new system capabilities and features, which helps you perform daily tasks in a more time efficient and productive way. It also prevents you from falling behind developments in technology.
Using the latest version also ensures you benefit from fixes and avoid issues that have already been rectified. Crashes, bugs, and other annoying occurrences are fixed during a software upgrade. Without an upgrade, it’s not realistic to expect these issues to just disappear on their own.
2. Prevent security breaches
Older versions of software have greater risk of being exploited by hackers, who can infect your veterinary practice management systems and cause downtime. The time spent dealing with a security breach could cost you a lot of money and compromise valuable customer data. Your veterinary software specialists are constantly improving technology and security to keep your systems running at maximum efficiency and safeguarding your customer information.
3. Save time and money
Putting off upgrading your software is false economy. While you might save money in the short term, what you don’t see on your balance sheet is a line for “time wasted.” Outdated software and old hardware suck time and productivity from your team and are guaranteed to consistently cause issues. Time is money, and wasted time is wasted money. Keeping your veterinary computer programs up to date also helps you remain competitive by supporting your business operations.
4. Improve staff and customer engagement
“Buggy” software is one of the main causes of staff unhappiness. Veterinary computer software that constantly crashes will inevitably lead to a drop in morale and less productive employees. On the other hand, a commitment to maintaining your software shows your team that you are investing in the tools they work with every day, which encourages them to perform at their best. Delaying an upgrade could also mean that your staff suddenly has a raft of new features to learn, instead of taking advantage of them as they are released. Regular upgrades reduce the stress of “change” on staff members.
Software that operates seamlessly also positively impacts your customer experience. There’s nothing worse than having customers standing at the front desk while one of your staff members says, “Sorry, the system just crashed, give me a minute while I restart.” This makes you look unprofessional and leaves a bad impression with your clients.
When your vet software is up-to-date, you’re able to take advantage of the latest features and functionality, which helps your staff perform more efficiently and your business function at the optimal level. A win-win for everyone.
Not sure if you’re on the latest version of your veterinary software? Need help updating? Contact our Support Team for assistance.