How to Get Help and Support When Starting Your Independent Optometry Practice

If you’re planning to take your optometry career to the next level, then you may be thinking about starting your independent optometry service. Many advantages come with being your own boss. Apart from operating your practice how you envision, you’ll be in control of your earnings as well. 

However, starting and running an optometry practice does miss its share of challenges. Not only will it call for a lot of thought and research but a lot of commitment as well.

However, considering the idea of being one’s boss and managing the entity the way you’ll deem fit, makes it a top dream and priority for most optometrists.

Whether you’re an experienced professional and want to start an independent practice to fulfill your career aspirations or a fresh graduate who wants to go the route of self-employment immediately after graduating, you’ll have to make some tough decisions.

You need to keep a lot of things in mind when starting your independent practice. 

Decisions made when starting an independent practice will play a huge role in the type of practice you’ll have. You’ll also need to employ better optometry practice management practices to ensure that your practice is a success.

Deciding on the Location

Location is among the most important factors when starting an optometry practice. Is there a good business opportunity in the location you’re planning to open your practice?

Be sure to analyze the traffic in the area before you sign a lease.

Consider where most of the traffic is coming from, the traffic count on the surrounding, how people spend their money, and how best to reach them. For this reason, many optometrists favor local malls and other high traffic areas like that. Some, such as Market Mall Eye Clinic, even adapt this into their names so that they can benefit from the way search engines work.

Don’t just opt for the vacant space in your town. Be sure to do geospatial analytics before choosing your location.

Running a successful independent optometry practice is not easy. Most seasoned professionals cite challenges when it comes to the retail and marketing part of the business. There are so many choices to make, with each mistake attracting a penalty to remind you of the lessons learned.

Financing Your New Practice

It is also important to consider where to get financing for your optometry practice. Whether you want to acquire an existing practice or want to obtain new premises, this is something you can’t ignore.

Luckily, you can get financing from lenders willing to finance your practice fully. These lenders offer a wide range of financing solutions in line with the unique needs of the optometric industry.

Your lender will perform a comprehensive analysis of your project as well as your current financial status before recommending a customized lending solution for you.

By getting 100 percent financing, you can run your practice smoothly with minimal hindrances.

The Buildout

After identifying your location, you should ensure to get the most out of your optometry practice.

For optimal functions, consider having between 1400 and 1600 square feet space. This way, you’ll provide the necessary services, for instance, reception, pre-test, optical, lab, training area, storage, office, etc. and remain on budget.

When starting, equip only one exam lane. You can equip the second lane when you see an increase in the number of patients. Work with an architect who has some understanding of optometry and one who is ready to work within your budget.

Since the buildup takes most of your budget, be sure to find a good contractor from the very beginning.

Buying Equipment

When starting, it is advisable to start with one or two pieces of equipment like the retina camera or visual field analyzer. You can always buy more equipment as the practice grows. As a rule of thumb, reinvest your profits by purchasing one new instrument each year.

Hiring Employees

Some people opt to hire employees for attitude and then train them as opposed to hiring an experienced person who lacks in personality. This way, you can devote time to train and teach new employees on how to do various tasks.

You may be surprised that those employees turn out to be the best-performing.  While this will take most of your time, it gives you the ability to train them to handle your exact needs.

Marketing Your Practice

You can significantly market your practice by engaging in various activities in your community. By being committed to your community, you’ll not only be giving back to your community but also have an opportunity that pays off in the long run.