Slowest: Mailed-in Orders
Slow: Faxed-in Orders - Called-in Orders - Emailed-In Orders
Fastest: Electronic Orders
There seems to be some misconception that called-in orders are entered at the time in which they are received. This is not the case. A called in order will “get in line” to be entered behind already-queued mailed, faxed, called and emailed orders.
Another misconception is that mailed-in orders jump-ahead of already queued orders upon their arrival. This is not the case. They get in line as well.
- Why do electronic orders always get priority?
- Why don’t we process all faxed-in, called-in, emailed-in and mailed-in orders prior to handling electronic orders?
These are questions we hear periodically from Y'all.
All non-electronically submitted orders require peer-review before materials are ordered. Additionally, there is a bunch of paper-handling to get these orders received, queued, entered, trayed and reviewed. These extra steps add up. In contrast, electronic orders are quickly reviewed on-screen and as soon as they are “Ok’d” they go directly into lens-pick and lens-order.
We also have a few cut-offs that we like to hit to ensure lenses can be short-ordered from Global Optics throughout the day. Electronic orders can be quickly reviewed before these times to ensure materials arrive promptly. In contrast, there is no way to effectively do the same process with a pile of papers queued up to be entered. Just not enough time.
To be a bit blunt, there is a ton of dickin-around with non-electronic orders that simply can’t be expedited without an opportunity cost. The only way to expedite this process would be an unnecessary increase in person-power (because I don’t think we can sensitively call it manpower anymore); i.e., increased costs equal increased price.
(Season 9 Episode 19: The Maid. Originally aired April 30, 1998. <- 20 years ago!)
It takes two people to process non-electronic orders. In contrast, one person can process a whole bunch of electronic orders in a very short amount of time. And, when I say whole-bunch, what I really mean is a whole bunch more. I’d estimate that one person can process 30 electronic orders in the same amount of time it takes two people to process 1 non-electronic order. This might be a fun “race” to have someday soon to demonstrate.
Moral of the story? We’re not going to invest in VHS technology. We’re also not going to invest in DVD technology. We’re into streaming and fiber optics, baby! Does electronic ordering take some time on the front-end for some optical locations? Yes. But the 5 minutes spent on entering an electronic order will save hours in production time. Don't your patients deserve that kind of service?
(Season 8 Episode 7: The Checks. Originally aired November 7, 1996. <- 22 years ago!)