When it comes to buying a new Practice Management System (PMS), it doesn’t pay to cut corners. In financial terms this represents a significant capital outlay, so it’s essential that the transition from old to new is managed properly if the new acquisition is to deliver optimum performance from day one. What does it take to make sure this happens? Jo Senior and her colleagues at Crossriggs Veterinary Clinic explain how this was achieved and share their experience of RoboVet™ Go Live Week.

Crossriggs Vets in Cumnock, Ayrshire is a long-established family business. Jo’s husband Iain runs the clinic, having taken over the reins from his father John in 2015. John maintains an involvement today in a consultancy capacity and, to complete the family connection, his wife Heather is Practice Manager. Crossriggs is a familiar and respected name in the local community. The clinic has a strong association with Scotland’s Rural College Barony Campus and is an official training practice for its HND Veterinary Nursing course. Such is its reputation, Crossriggs Vets was nominated in four categories at the 2017 Petplan Veterinary Awards.

Successful veterinary practices share an ability to balance animal healthcare with sound business management and Crossriggs is no different in this respect. The Mission Statement, which features prominently on the practice website, states that it remains committed to maintaining a solid financial base and this policy has enabled the clinic to undergo a major refurbishment of its premises, operate an effective CPD programme and ensure that IT and computing resources are updated regularly. Crossriggs displays all the hallmarks of a progressive vet business and, as it looked to the future, a new practice management system was considered an essential investment. As Jo explains, it was a team decision to select RoboVet.

‘Our old practice management system had served us very well over the years, but we recognised that it was time to move on. The industry has changed greatly since the clinic was established. For a start, we have more clients today and offer a wider range of treatments and services. Also, the regulatory and compliance environment is more rigorous than ever, particularly in relation to animal drugs and we needed greater support in this area of our work. RoboVet was recommended to us and following a demo, which involved our entire team, the decision was unanimous.’

It is perhaps indicative of the team culture fostered at Crossriggs that it required everyone to be fully onboard before the new system was authorised. The next hurdle was to manage the transition to RoboVet, but, as Jo recalls, the process was both simple and stress-free.

‘They managed the conversion to our new system really well. It was great to have our RoboVet trainer with us during Go Live week – he was a reassuring presence in the clinic and any worries over the changes were eased in no time. Tuesday was devoted to staff training and it was clear from the offset that the system held no fears for the team. It appealed equally to clinical and office personnel, who familiarised themselves with the various tools and modules in no time. On Wednesday we said a fond farewell to our old system as the computers were turned off for the last time. Two engineers installed our new hardware, managed the data transfer and configured the software. The system was then tested fully to ensure everything was operating correctly. It was business as usual on Go Live day itself – on Thursday the transition was seamless. Without any fanfare, our new system was up and running.’

Crossriggs Veterinary Clinic is a new customer, converting to RoboVet in January 2017. The benefits of the new system have yet to be fully realised, however, as Jo observes, early indications are extremely positive.

‘We’ve had a fantastic response from our team. Our previous system was good, however we recognise that RoboVet offers us so much more. Not only that, the training and support was outstanding and this gave us the confidence to hit the ground running. There’s no doubt that we’ve made the right choice.