BVRA membership works on two levels:
- The Practice becomes a member
- The practice then adds individuals as members
An individual cannot be a BVRA member unless their practice is also a member. However individuals can take BVRA courses and qualifications – at a higher cost
Practice membership starts at £150+vat per year
The first 5 receptionists are included for ‘free’ within the practice membership.
A practice can register as many individual receptionists as you wish.
Many practices also sign up members of staff whose job title isn’t ‘veterinary receptionist’ as they would like them to receive the front of house training that BVRA provides. This includes roles such as Veterinary nurses and Veterinary Care Assistants
The date on which a practice initially signs up will act as the practice’s ‘annual renewal date’.
Should a practice wish to sign up more than five receptionists, simply select the relevant number when purchasing membership and the balance will automatically be calculated for you.
Practices can add extra receptionists as BVRA members at any time using their BVRA account. Please note, that any extra individual memberships that are purchased after your practice annual renewal date will expire on the practice’s annual renewal date.
Benefits of being a BVRA member
- The Bronze level (both companion animal and equine versions) of the AVR certificate are free to BVRA members
- BVRA members get a significant discount off the Silver and Gold levels of the AVR Certificate.
- BVRA members get a significant discount off the BVRA Annual Congress.
- BVRA members get preferred rates to any BVRA regional CPD event held throughout the year.
- BVRA members get the Competent Veterinary Dispenser Award for free
- Other membership benefits include discounted rates / free access to other, online CPD.
- Access to BVRA’s Closed Facebook forum (exclusive to BVRA members)
- Regular Facebook Live sessions with Brian Faulkner
1. Improves customer service
Receptionists are the first and last impression new and existing clients will have of your business. Knowing how to make that all important first impression, as well as providing “prompt, polite and purposeful progress” with their queries, is all covered in the bronze level of the Accredited Veterinary Receptionist Award (AVR).
2. Improves confidence when recommending appointments
Veterinary businesses need to ‘capture’ new clients and new cases. This means converting “contact to consults”. Many receptionists are hesitant to proactively recommend appointments when clients ask them about symptoms as they feel ‘surely clients will ask for one if they need one’. Not so. Many clients expect the receptionist to guide them in their need for an appointment and respect the receptionist’s opinion. The AVR will help receptionists develop the confidence and the feeling that they have the ‘right’ to recommend appointments.
3. Helps ensure follow-up appointments
Approximately 40% of the appointments on a veterinary diary will be follow-up appointments initiated by the vets and nurses once a client has already been seen. For cases to be seen through to completion it is important that these follow-up cases are actually booked as opposed to drifting out the door. The AVR helps practices recognise and deal with the Bermuda Triangle problem whereby clients and follow-up disappear without trace once they leave the consultation room.
4. Helps improve the quality of information and direction that clients receive
Veterinary receptionists are expected to field queries relating to many routine issues, such as preventative healthcare. Receptionists who feel confident in their practice’s preferred recommendations will give more purposeful information and come across as much more credible. The silver level of the AVR was designed to ensure receptionists know what your practice protocol is across all stages of the customer journey.
5. Decreases client complaints
Clients can complain about many aspects of practice services but many complaints centre around expectations about costs. The AVR helps practices recognise and deal with surprises about costs via the £75 rule, which states that if a bill is more than £75, a client should have been informed of the balance BEFORE they reach reception. The BVRA believes that receptionists should not be expected to resolve complaints over bills that they did not create. Adopting this system as a practice habit means everyone needs to work together in order to significantly reduce unpaid bills and the angst associated with them.
6. Develops communication between colleagues
We all know teamwork is essential to success but often communication in practice is not as proactive as it could or should be. That does not mean we are at loggerheads with each other. Instead it means if vet or nurse colleagues fail to take the initiative to ensure that receptionists know what is going on with the logistics of a case, this can cause multiple moments of uncertainty. This then increases the chances something will not be arranged as required or, someone will do or say the ‘wrong’ thing because they didn’t know. The AVR helps practices identify these essential moments of hand over and connection.
7. Develops consistency between colleagues and between sub-teams
Clients feel more reassured when they hear the same message from multiple sources. Whilst there are often various products and ways to resolve medical issues, clients need and prefer a consistent message from their veterinary practice in order to minimize anxiety about whether they are doing the ‘right thing’. The silver level of the AVR helps practices clarify – and create – what their internal polices and protocols are, not only so that receptionists know them, but in order to communicate them consistently to their clients.
8. Improves working relationship with all staff members
The net effect of navigating the Bermuda Triangle and adopting the £75 rule is that receptionists feel less stressed! If you ask non-receptionist colleagues “Do you look out for your receptionists?” they usually say “Yes! Of course!” but often they aren’t proactive in doing so by avoiding the potential for exposure to dealing with entirely avoidable issues. Being proactive to make sure your colleagues are in the loop isn’t just an act of professional respect, it’s good for morale and the long-term health of the business.
9. Cutting edge CPD in an affordable and social manner
Receptionists tell us that they often feel left out of the practice’s development plans. Receptionists see vets and nurses going on CPD, and doing lunch ’n’ learns and often wonder who supports them. The AVR award is conveniently available online but if you want a little more social, the BVRA Annual congress as well as the BVRA roadshows are fun and informative ways to help your team develop the skills, knowledge and attitudes they need to thrive.
10. Better time management
Stress occurs when we feel uncertainty and urgency. In other words, poor time management creates a sense of urgency that exaggerates the urgency already inherent in veterinary medical practice. The AVR award explains the 8 Principles of diary management that can help minimise and even avoid much of the sense of urgency we get working in practice.