Here’s a list of useful iPhone apps to help you run your solo practice. If you have a favorite app that isn’t listed, drop us a line and we’ll add it to the list.
Expensify– my favorite app. Use it for accounting and keeping track of business expenses. Have a expense report for every month, as well as yearly for equipment, meals and incidentals, and mileage YTD. Takes me an hour or two to do my own bookkeeping every month.
If you pay the going rate of $200 per month for bookkeeping even at two hours per month it’s a $208,000 job– and if even one expense is missed it costs you money.
Finally, you can help foolproof your practice from embezzlement if you verify the receipts. If your employees know you watch your receipts like a hawk there’s less likely to be funny business.
Runner up: Quick Books app- not only can you store all receipts and do bookkeeping and accounting, you can even run your company payroll from this app.
Capital one spark pay– used in conjunction with a iPod Touch for credit card processing. Capital one is $20 per month, 2% swiped and 2.75% keyed and for AMEX. In my practice this comes out to about 2.3% per month. (Note: the day this post was published they announced this product would be discontinued effective January 31 2018, now we use a company that works with the Swipe Simple app, and is under 2% a month.)
Runner up: Square is another popular option but costs more at 2.75% swiped and 3.5% keyed. I have a referral link here that gets both of us $1000 in free processing (saving about $28). If your monthly charges are over $15,000 there may be better options which we will discuss later on this blog. Many companies advertise a rate of 1.15% or 0.01% over “true rate” but then tack on all sorts of daily and monthly fees. How much are you paying when everything is said and done?
Google voice- no need to pay for a answering service. I leave it on my after hours emergency voicebox for patients to phone (as backup, patients can also leave messages on my office line which rings my cell phone). It can even transcribe voicemails into texts.
Runner up: Doximity dialer, which lets you set what appears on your call recipient’s caller ID to be any number you choose, so you can phone from your cell and make it look like the call is coming from your practice.
Second runner up: Vonage– VOIP service which allows you to phone any US number from overseas for free over a WiFi connection. Great for checking back into office if you take an overseas trip.
Evernote– for taking notes, can include pictures of important documents in your notes. I probably don’t use this as much as I should but you can store all your practice financials, insurance contracts, website login passwords, and other practice documents through the cloud.
Runner up: Dropbox
Google my business– set up a profile so patients can search for you under google. This is a must do when you open as it will improve your search rankings.
You can enter your office hours, website, location (so you can be found on google maps), and photos.
Google AdWords express– used for internet advertising. Depending on your location, specialty and clientele this may work spectacularly or may be just mediocre.
Many folks on our group wonder if you need to hire a expert to set up adwords. No you don’t. You can set the budget, targeted zip codes, add or subtract keywords, choose the time of day ad runs via app. I turn off my ads through the app when I go on vacation. Hopefully soon I’ll be busy enough that I can cut this expense out of my budget!
Doximity app– free fax service although lately I’ve heard of some folks occasionally having technical issues sending faxes. Personally I stick to a paper fax line, but many people like this app.
Gotomeeting– used for teleconferences with EHR, vendors, etc. Very useful when I was demoing practice management systems and EHRs as well as getting training.
Slack– creates task lists which can be updated in real time if you want to make sure your multiple employees are getting things done instead of passing the buck. I still only have one employee so I don’t use it but many members of our google group like this app.
Credit karma– to check your personal score which is used for decisions on business loans. So for your startup, refinance of practice loan or expansion of practice make sure there are no errors on your credit report and your score is where it should be.
Runner up: Experian app, Capital one, Bank of America and many other banks will provide you with same information
On the clock– a time clock app to manage your employees’ clock in and clock out. You can customize it to a certain device and make it trackable by GPS, but don’t let your employees clock in, go shopping for eight hours, and come back to the office to clock out. I don’t use this yet but many members of our google group like this.
Perch– keeps track of comments about your business on social media for monitoring and response. Recommended by our google group as it’s free, rather than having to pay for a company to do the monitoring.
Indeed– used to advertise for hiring employees. Once candidates respond, you can sort them out into categories such as very interested or delete the ones who aren’t qualified.
Tiger Text– HIPPA compliant app from our ACO which allows me to text patient information to other ophthalmologists and primary care doctors in town, as long as they’re a member of the ACO.