The decade-old question: Mac or PC?
Back in the day, dentists weren’t able to choose. The dental industry was a PC-dominated industry. Your front office computers and operatory computers could only be PCs because the current dental software options only worked with these types of computers.
But as the times have changed, so have the dental industry and its software. Today there is practice management software for Macs and PCs, meaning it’s up to you to decide which system is right for your practice.
There are advantages and disadvantages to each system. Only you can calculate which system advantages outweigh the disadvantages and choose which system is best to run your practice on.
Price is one of the biggest concerns, and more often than not it’s the determining factor. And between the two, PCs are cheaper than Macs. The costs to upgrade and repair PCs are typically less expensive than with Macs and other Apple devices.
Quality has a lot to do with the price tag. A higher-quality product is going to cost you more, which is why Macs are pricier. They’re built with better materials, and on average, they have the longer life expectancy compared to Windows PCs. So while PCs might cost less upfront, in the long run you could end up paying more than you would have if you first invested your money with a Mac.
Mac designers paid great attention to detail when designing them. Macs have a cleaner interface compared to PCs, and they’re known for making even the more complex tasks simple. But, when it comes to hard disk space, RAM and USB ports, Windows devices tend to perform slightly better than Apple devices.
Good dental practice management software is linked to your practice’s long-term success. The right dental software helps you become the most profitable, productive and efficient practice around. The right software also doesn’t make you choose—it provides you with all the needed features rather than making you only pick a few on your want list and it’s compatible with both Macs and PCs.
Some practice management software only works with one operating system, which means it only works with devices that use that operating system. No one likes restrictions, and even more so, no one likes being told they can use this but they can’t use this.
Let’s review some of the disadvantages you might face with your practice using software that only works with one operating system:
When you go with dental software that’s compatible with both Macs and PCs and their correlating systems, you don’t face any of these problems. It’s a lot less hassle and headache getting your practice set up, and less stress is only one of the many benefits of Mac and PC compatible dental software.
Time is money, and in order to be a profitable practice, you must use your time wisely. Each workday is already packed full of seeing patients, keeping forms and schedules up to date and handling patient insurance claims. You don’t have extra time to spend dealing with a total office transition.
Transitioning from PCs to Macs or vice versa takes time: time to move patient data over, time to learn and train staff on the new office devices and system and office downtime to allow for all of that to happen.
Money-wise, you already spend money paying your employees, rent or mortgage on your office space, building utility bill and office supplies and equipment. You have already spent thousands of dollars purchasing the computers and other devices you currently use in your office, why should you pay thousands more to replace them all when you don’t have to? You will also lose more money from the downtime the transition and training require.
With cloud-based practice management software that works with all systems and devices, you don’t have to spend the extra and valuable time or money moving your entire office over to something new and training each employee until they are comfortable using the new system and devices.
Training employees is one of the most expensive endeavors small businesses face each year. On average, businesses spend $1,2000 per employee training, and that total is slightly more in the health care industry. Health care organizations spend nearly $1,400 and 24 hours of training per employee.
You spend enough time and money as it is training new employees and continuing education for your current employees. Throwing in even more time and money for additional training — training that’s unnecessary — shouldn’t have to be something you add to your schedule and budget.
And with completely compatible dental software, it’s not. Extra training, as well as the time and money for it, aren’t needed. When you are able to continue using the system and devices everyone in your office is used to using, no training is required. Sure getting new dental software will require some training, but the time and cost to train your employees is significantly reduced with this type of software since most offer training via online tutorials that come with the price of the software.
We all want the freedom, and power, to choose what we want. Software that’s Mac-specific or PC-specific rids you of that freedom and power to choose. Dental software that only works for Macs means you can only use Apple desktops, laptops, iPads and iPhones. If half of your staff are PC people, they don’t have the freedom to choose and use the devices they want and are comfortable using.
Don’t force your employees to only use one operating system and one type of device. Give them device and location flexibility. Freedom of choice is good for you, your staff and your office as a whole. Besides saving time and money, being able to use any device means you can use a Mac desktop at your front desk, PCs in your operatory rooms and check schedules and patient data at home from your iPad. The information is the same as well as the look and feel of the software across both Macs and PCs.
With dental software that isn’t biased to one system or device, there’s no sacrifice, no compromise and all in all, it’s less hassle and headache.
So if a company tells you they are a Mac or PC only software, remember that you no longer have to choose because there’s cloud-based dental software platforms on the market that are compatible with both Macs and PCs.