Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: I'm a little perturbed about warranty work.

  1. #1
    What's up? drk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Ohio
    Occupation
    Optometrist
    Posts
    8,278

    I'm a little perturbed about warranty work.

    First of all, heap scorn upon me for dealing with vision care plans. Ha ha. Drk takes vision care plans with crappy margins.

    I admit it.

    Here's the deal: how can you have great service with poor margins? YOU CAN'T.



    Case in point: my optician is on the phone and I'm sticking my nose into her business. (It's really my business, if you think about it.)

    "Ok...which lens? All right, you're just in the nick of time. I'll call you when it's in."

    Yep, some caller had a "scratch" in her lens and wanted it fixed. MAYBE the caller suggested a warranty (or maybe my super-helpful optician just did a 'no-problem/no-fault' warranty lickety-split. I'm not going to ask because she's mad at me over this already.)


    Well, I'd say that's pretty damn good service! Call with a complaint of a scratch on a PAL with AR and sight unseen we'll automatically for free replace the lens and you don't even have to leave your couch.

    Meanwhile, my optician is going to have to call VSP for a "warranty authorization" (roadblock), then do the computer entry to order it (time and my money) and then have it come in lens-only and call the patient to come in (more time and my money) and insert it into the frame IF IT FITS (more time and my money) and I don't even want to know about how I get the credit on my invoice, again (accountant/bookeeper time/money).

    All for peanut VCP reimbursement AND TRUST ME WHEN I SAY PEANUTS.


    So, I don't want to be a patsy. I want to give good service, but not for free.

    I'm thinking of throwing out some speed bumps.
    1. We MUST SEE THE lens
    2. We must take your frame and send it to the lab
    3. There will be a copay. Maybe $25.

    This will apply to frames, as well. (We may not need to keep the glasses for frame warranty).


    What do you do?
    Last edited by drk; 07-27-2021 at 05:27 PM.

  2. #2
    OptiWizard
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Flat Land
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    328
    We use a VSP one lab for all of our vsp work. There is a way to order warranty work through eyefinity that takes not even a minute. We receive precut lenses that fit the large majority of the time. Even better we don't have to return the lenses for a credit.

  3. #3
    OptiBoard Professional
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    USA
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    163
    We charge a small "Service fee" for warranties and it has definitely cut down on warranty abuse even though the fee is low. Just inform your patient of it at the time of purchase and definitely dont take warranty requests over the phone, make them bring it in.

  4. #4
    OptiBoard Professional KrystleClear's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2021
    Location
    Pennsylvania, USA
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    122
    VSP really does not pay enough to compensate for the time it takes to help the pick the glasses and select the lens options, and then fit and adjust at the dispense. Nor does NVA or Davis, for that matter. Would you be allowed to assess a copay for warranty remake through VSP or similar insurances? I could see that being an issue. Not sure what the rules are on that.

    I think it is completely reasonable though to ask the patient to first bring the lenses in so they can be inspected by an optician. Sometimes a scratch is not even a scratch. Sometimes they are seeing the progressive markings. Our lab offers us warranties on Crizal products, their premium in house AR, certain progressives, etc and sometimes they require we send the damaged lens back into them. Patients don't need to know if the lab doesn't actually require them back or not. We ask them to come in with their glasses so we can see them and warn them that if the lens(es) need replaced we will have to send the frames and lenses to the lab, so they will be without them.

    When I worked for a MyEyeDr location several years back, we sold scratch coating as coming with a warranty - patients wouldn't have a warranty on the frame or lens if they refused scratch coating, including on lenses that you wouldn't add scratch coat to, like poly. You bank on the fact that most won't need it (or won't bother taking advantage of it), so you offset those that do by collecting that extra bit for the scratch coating. My current office, a private practice, incentives the premium AR coatings as coming with the warranty. Otherwise, unless it's a defect in the lens or our error, there is no coverage for scratches.
    Krystle

  5. #5
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Seaford, NY USA
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    5,876
    First of all, this is a routine occurrence for me—Replacing lenses—warranty or not—remotely.
    Clients appreciate the convenience—especially after they go to another shop.

    Second—HahA! Yes, drk, you shouldn’t be reimbursed at VCP levels. That’s your choice.

    Third—and most importantly—you may be the doc, but you’re not the optician.

    So just who is the most essential to the Total Eyecare Experience?

    B

  6. #6
    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Richmond, VA
    Occupation
    Optical Retail
    Posts
    2,212
    If your concern is losing precious worker-hours to warranties, I don't see why making a patient come in and see an optician helps at all. You're just adding another visit to the amount of time your staff is investing.

    If you want good patient retention--and nothing makes more money than patient retention--you offer warranties with a smile and no charge. Patient retention is (almost always) worth as much time as it takes to retain the patient. Milking patients for $10 here, $25 there is a good way for you to lose your clients to me.

    I have worked for practices that sold everything with a one-year, one-time warranty, and I have worked for practices that sold different levels of product with different warranties (Crizal Easy 1-year 1-time, Alize 2-year 1-time, Avance and Sapphire 2-year unlimited). The former practices were always run by doctors or managers who insisted that people would take advantage of the latter scenario. I haven't seen it. It doesn't happen. And even if the warranty remake numbers are a tiny bit higher with more generous warranties, it's vastly overcome by the fact that almost all of your patients buying AR coatings will spend the additional $40 to jump up to the top tier "just in case."

    People take advantage of these kind of things at a far lower rate than we assume they will, and the anecdotal few we remember doing it is an infinitesimally small fraction of our clientele. It's much more inconvenient for people to take time off their jobs and school to come in to get their lenses replaced than it is for you to spend 15 minutes of the day you're already at work. Just replace the damn lens, smile, decline to nickel-and-dime your clientele into oblivion, and be a hero.

    Edit: I've worked with VSP for over 20 years and I've never in my life had to get a "warranty authorization." If you're using a VSP lab, Eyefinity has a page that lets you place warranty and other remake claims in less than 30 seconds. It's not hard.
    Last edited by AngeHamm; 07-28-2021 at 08:09 AM.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

  7. #7
    OptiBoard Apprentice
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    US
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    47
    Dang, we just call the lab we send our VSP orders to and say "I need to do a scratch warranty for patient XXXXX," no screwing around with remake authorizations needed. We do nearly everything with Crizal AR or TD2, so them having a warranty or not is typically not a question, and it happens at low enough volume that it's not any real hindrance to our operations to call one in

  8. #8
    What's up? drk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Ohio
    Occupation
    Optometrist
    Posts
    8,278
    I'm grateful for the responses.

    I think I need to challenge my assumptions a little.

    I'll get back to you, later!

  9. #9
    Eyes eastward... Uilleann's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Utah
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    2,921
    Quote Originally Posted by drk View Post
    I'm grateful for the responses.

    I think I need to challenge my assumptions a little.

    I'll get back to you, later!
    Doc, I think perhaps you may have over thought this one a bit. But I applaud you revisiting your approach. I agree it doesn't make sense to nickle and dime your patients. And in three decades of doing this, I have never - not ONCE - wasted my time calling VSP for a warranty anything. Call the lab directly. Give pt's name and job details. Might take a minute to do. More often than not, you'll get a new lens, or lenses sent, cut and edged, ready to pop into pt's frame with no issues, and in that person's eyes, it's like magic.

    Where you're more likely to run into pushback is with frame warranties. Most manufacturers are growing far less tolerant of the "Irantheseoverwithasteamrollerthenlitthemonfirethenflushedth emdownthetoiletbutdemandyoureplacethemunderthemanufactuererd efectwarranty" line of complete B.S. that patients will always, 100% of the time try to push on you. They may have to pay for their abuse in those cases. But lenses are about as easy as it gets.

    It can be helpful to package all your lens options into simple groupings including a good quality AR with a solid warranty. Don't bother with anything less. THAT really isn't worth your time. You'll make a few extra shiny pennies for your trouble on the front end from the boundless generosity of our VSP overlords, and your butt is then also covered in scratch warranty scenarios. And while we all know that a "scratch proof" lens does not, nor will EVER exist, using better quality lenses every time will absolutely lessen your headaches and warranty remakes in future.

    Keep it simple. If you need to raise exam fees $5-10 per pt to help cover practice labor costs to run warranties, that might be an option to consider? But I would agree to avoid the service fee model. Most private offices just do those sort of services for "free" and you'll possibly run the risk of looking like a miserly old curmudgeon!

    (Far me it from me to poo-poo on miserly old curmudgeons mind you - I'm well on my way there myself!)

  10. #10
    OptiBoard Professional OptiBoard Silver Supporter Optical Roy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    Nacogdoches Texas
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    132
    We have a text option for warranty replacement, and they do them at no charge. We edge our own lens and keep every pattern per patient in our system. The only time I request to see the glasses is when they say the frame is broke, gotta make sure fido didn't run them under the road grater before I warranty those things.
    Roy W. Jackson, Sr. ABOC

  11. #11
    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Richmond, VA
    Occupation
    Optical Retail
    Posts
    2,212
    Yes to both of the above: frame warranty claims I have to see first.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

  12. #12
    Master OptiBoarder
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    PA
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    1,422
    Quote Originally Posted by Uilleann View Post
    It can be helpful to package all your lens options into simple groupings including a good quality AR with a solid warranty. Don't bother with anything less. THAT really isn't worth your time. You'll make a few extra shiny pennies for your trouble on the front end from the boundless generosity of our VSP overlords, and your butt is then also covered in scratch warranty scenarios. And while we all know that a "scratch proof" lens does not, nor will EVER exist, using better quality lenses every time will absolutely lessen your headaches and warranty remakes in future.
    Yes... we never offer the low grade AR...only the best or none at all. We spend a lot of time with our patients explaining materials and durability and helping them make the best decision for their eyewear so we can prevent issues. But, life is life and sometimes things happen. Preventing issues as much as possible is essential. We also tell patients that warranties do not cover abuse. That being said... I don't always make a patient come in to show me the scratches. It depends on the situation. Some patients are crazy and maybe you need to see the lens before saying it is covered... Some you know are people that don't abuse their glasses and there is no need to make them come in.

  13. #13
    OptiBoard Professional
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    California
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    150
    We charge $35 for AR warranty replacements.

  14. #14
    What's up? drk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Ohio
    Occupation
    Optometrist
    Posts
    8,278
    OK, here's my blah-blah-blah but I started the thread so a little closure is good. (Plus you can laugh longer, if you want.)

    1. We don't sell anything based on warranty, as some may. That is, we don't tier products like AR based on "good-better-best". We just use "better" and that's that. As such we don't need to tout the better warranty. (For that matter we don't do that with frames, either.)

    2. I think if you talk about warranties, you're going to get warranty requests! I prefer to kind of keep the warranty hidden (as I do with lab warranties for remakes, etc.) and only use it when I need it.

    3. If I put roadblocks to warranty redemption (like copays or trips to the office to see the optician first) I'm creating as much trouble and angst as I'm trying to save myself. Better to offer good service with a (fakey) smile.

    4. We don't have a lot of warranty work, in the big scheme of things, and after investigating I see that my view of the processes involved in remaking lenses, billing, etc. is outdated. They have been streamlined.

    5. I looked at what they call "dispensing fees" (which I call "gross profit" --really gross!) and they are about 1/2 what I want. But it is what it is.


    So the decision is to do as much convenient, friendly, over-the-phone*, remote warranty work as we have to, but we will not promote it. We'll use the angle that we are "nice" when people have problems.


    Thank you, wise people.



    *we gotta see the frames, though

  15. #15
    OptiBoard Professional
    Join Date
    Aug 2020
    Location
    Earth
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    148
    Quote Originally Posted by drk View Post
    OK, here's my blah-blah-blah but I started the thread so a little closure is good. (Plus you can laugh longer, if you want.)

    1. We don't sell anything based on warranty, as some may. That is, we don't tier products like AR based on "good-better-best". We just use "better" and that's that. As such we don't need to tout the better warranty. (For that matter we don't do that with frames, either.)

    2. I think if you talk about warranties, you're going to get warranty requests! I prefer to kind of keep the warranty hidden (as I do with lab warranties for remakes, etc.) and only use it when I need it.

    3. If I put roadblocks to warranty redemption (like copays or trips to the office to see the optician first) I'm creating as much trouble and angst as I'm trying to save myself. Better to offer good service with a (fakey) smile.

    4. We don't have a lot of warranty work, in the big scheme of things, and after investigating I see that my view of the processes involved in remaking lenses, billing, etc. is outdated. They have been streamlined.

    5. I looked at what they call "dispensing fees" (which I call "gross profit" --really gross!) and they are about 1/2 what I want. But it is what it is.


    So the decision is to do as much convenient, friendly, over-the-phone*, remote warranty work as we have to, but we will not promote it. We'll use the angle that we are "nice" when people have problems.


    Thank you, wise people.



    *we gotta see the frames, though
    +1

  16. #16
    OptiBoard Novice
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Occupation
    Dispensing Optician
    Posts
    1
    I agree with not selling with the warranty in mind
    I always tell clients if they have an Oopsie to come see me and if I have to I’ll call in a “favor”.
    When asked, if the client got a premium AR which most did, I told them that the first Oopsie was always covered.
    no charge warranties were limited to the first time within the warranty. anything after that was a $25 dispensing fee.
    The clients were always thrilled to have their $800 glasses replaced for $25
    never a complaint. This also curtailed the infinitesimal hairline marks way over in the temporal Lens warranty replacement weekly redos. Had a few clients who would do this biweekly.
    Think of it this way,you send your watch in for a repair do you get to do it for nothing?
    The last place I worked at we had a lot of cement workers and other blue-collar. One of my coworkers would give them a crizal for a basic AR price, and replace them at no charge every couple of weeks. These are people who should’ve been wearing their safety glasses at work too. At any given time over 40% of our jobs going through the lab at that time we’re due to “scratch warranties”.
    it was amazing to see these abused glasses. We would get three or four a day that were chewed up by the dog. Everywhere else I worked it was explicitly explained that dog bites were not covered.

  17. #17
    OptiBoard Novice
    Join Date
    Feb 2021
    Location
    Maryland
    Occupation
    Optometrist
    Posts
    9
    Stolen from another site; "warranty covers material not labor". So charge as you will for your time. I would apply this to VCP jobs not private pay.

  18. #18
    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Richmond, VA
    Occupation
    Optical Retail
    Posts
    2,212
    Quote Originally Posted by drk View Post
    2. I think if you talk about warranties, you're going to get warranty requests! I prefer to kind of keep the warranty hidden (as I do with lab warranties for remakes, etc.) and only use it when I need it.
    I have heard this argument over and over again. Please believe me: I have worked in environments that sell multi-tiered warranties and ones that don't even mention them and the rush of warranty claims you imagine you're going to see will not materialize. At the most you will have two or three patients a year who opt to use a warranty instead of updating their RX, and the money lost from those occasions will be absolutely swamped by the profits you will see from offering a better-warrantied coating for $20-25 more.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Ono Optical with year warranty/ Eight to Eighty with lifetime warranty!
    By PremiumDynamic in forum Optical Marketplace
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-27-2013, 01:33 PM
  2. warranty?
    By mma in forum General Optics and Eyecare Discussion Forum
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 01-08-2009, 10:01 PM
  3. The low cost of warranty work.."I beg to diffa"..
    By optical24/7 in forum General Optics and Eyecare Discussion Forum
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 05-01-2007, 04:17 PM
  4. Warranty
    By Va.LDO in forum General Optics and Eyecare Discussion Forum
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 12-12-2003, 05:47 AM
  5. Warranty, or NOT????
    By mullo in forum General Optics and Eyecare Discussion Forum
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 05-29-2001, 12:54 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •