Written by Gurminder for Doctify
MEET TOM HUNT – THE DOCTOR’S DOCTOR
“You may be the best knee surgeon in the world but what does it matter if no one knows about you?” – Tom Hunt
Tom Hunt has been helping doctors run their practices for almost 25 years and he’s getting better at it every day. PPM Software lets a doctor do what they are good at (treating patients) and instead takes care of all the mundane but important administration and financial aspects of a business. Last week, Doctify decided to catch up with Tom to get the download on how he has built PPM Software into one of the leading practice management software companies in the UK.
We call the number that we have for PPM Software, listen to the automated messaging service and press two for Sales and General Enquiries – unbelievably, Tom is the person who picks up the phone.
Tom started life as a technician in the air force before joining a computer repair company. He recalls how he was prompted into reconsidering his career choice when a computer salesman disparagingly remarked that he paid more in taxes than Tom had filed as income on his P60. Tom soon found out he was rather good at sales and he was enjoying his new found profession when a friend called him up out of the blue and asked if wanted to go for a pint.
The phone call was from a friend of Tom’s who was a programmer and who had been talking to an orthopaedic surgeon about developing software for doctors. In Tom’s words: “It sounded like a good idea, Joe (the surgeon) would open doors, Paul (the programmer) would program and I would sell.”
Now, almost 25 years later, there are over 2,000 PPM Software installations across the UK and Tom has built deep relationships with all of the major hospital groups.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO WORK WITH DOCTORS?
We wanted to ask Tom a few questions about working with doctors and see whether there were any shared experiences. Tom had thought about publishing appointments online over 10 years ago but ultimately didn’t follow through on the idea. Tom has, however, seen distinct changes in the way that Doctors are embracing technology.
DOCTIFY: What hasn’t changed in the past 25 years?
TOM: Doctors are still pretty hopeless at marketing themselves. When I ask a new Consultant where he is going to get his first appointment from, what his set-up costs will be, what his marketing costs should be and what his business case looks like, I invariably get the same answer.
DOCTIFY: We are noticing that doctors’ attitudes towards technology are changing. Do you agree?
TOM: I would agree and I think that doctors have been slow to change. However, it is much more likely that new consultants moving into private practice will use software and that this will force the rest of their peers to adopt similar tools. However, I still think most doctors don’t know where to start. You may be the best knee surgeon in the world but what does it matter if no one knows about you?
I think the question Consultants should be asking is not “should I have a system,” rather it’s “which system should I select.” – Tom Hunt
DOCTIFY: We think we know why Consultants should use Doctify, but why should they choose PPM Software?
TOM: Because our system works. PPM Software doesn’t go wrong. The majority of support calls are people asking us how to do something and never relate to the system. Because you’ll get through to a real person in less than 15 seconds if you call us. Because you’ll get through to me if you need to.
THE FUTURE OF MEDICINE
Speaking to Tom, it’s hard not to be convinced by his authority, experience and passion for PPM software. We at Doctify are delighted that people like Tom exist and are embracing new technology. It’s hard to predict where healthcare will be in 25 years’ time but we can be sure that digitisation will touch every area of medicine.
As for Tom, a close source informed us that:
“Doctors only leave PPM when they retire, die or change hospital.”
Something tells us that Tom has found a magic balance between technology and compassion and that this will help him stay ahead of innovation.