We all know the inconvenience of receiving a software upgrade prompt when we’re in the middle of something important. We often just click the ‘later’ button, thinking we’ll get to it when we have more time. And we also believe the software features we have right now are working just fine.
However, it’s not just enhanced features that we put on hold when we click the ‘later’ button. By not staying current, you are risking your practice’s ability to continue operating without any hiccups.
Here are other essential benefits of upgrading your practice software and staying up to date:
Increased productivity and efficiency
Covetrus continually seeks feedback from our practice customers; many features and improvements come directly from this feedback. Most often, the upgraded features include productivity tools that help streamline your practice operations and save time.
Remember the public telephone booth? Take a minute to remember what life was like when public phones were the only option you had when you were out and about. Mobile communication has literally transformed our personal and work lives and software providers work hard to make sure all the latest communication tools are available through integrations in the latest upgrades.
Computer hackers and cyber criminals are constantly reworking their strategies to gain access to company databases and financial information. You may not see it, but there’s a constant war going on between your software provider’s security team and the bad guys. Upgrading your software means you’re taking advantage of the latest software security measures and protecting your practice and vital client data.
Software vendors develop and test their applications on the most recent versions of an operating system. For example, Windows 7 reached its End of Life (EOL) on January 14, 2020 and Windows 8.1 will reach EOL on January 10, 2023. Despite this, many computers – particularly in the corporate world – are still running these operating systems. Microsoft, as well as software solutions providers like Covetrus, are focusing on developing newer products, so it pays to upgrade your practice software to keep in step.
It’s not realistic to expect that the IT professionals who support your business will cover outdated software and technology. Newer graduates have cut their teeth on more recent software, so will likely have limited knowledge of older solutions. It will take them longer to get to the bottom of any problems you’re experiencing and potentially increase your support costs.
You might think that skipping an upgrade will save you money. However, the opposite is often true. Systems running older software are more unstable and prone to freezes and crashes. Worst-case scenario, a poor customer experience caused by software problems during a consult or at the front desk could cause a client to vote with their feet and head to a more ‘up with the times’ competitor. A software upgrade is a small price to pay compared with the loss of ongoing customer loyalty.
System compatibility and integration improvements
Most practices use a variety of diagnostic and administration software to run equipment and deliver a seamless experience. Upgrades ensure that all your software solutions stay coordinated and integrated correctly.
Employees become frustrated with having to use outdated software and equipment, particularly when it lets them down in front of impatient clients. Upgrading your software means they’re less likely to become disgruntled with ongoing system crashes and instead focus their energy on providing great customer service. Also, younger members of your team will be especially frustrated with older software and will require time-consuming training on outdated systems.