6 Hidden Fees That Ruin Your Dosimetry Budget (and how to avoid them)
You signed up with a new dosimetry provider, and you got a GREAT rate…..or so you thought. Little did you know that by the end of the year, you may be paying more than double what you thought you signed up and budgeted for….yikes! Before you sign your next contract, read some of the hidden fees that can be budget busters in your dosimetry program.
We’ve put together a list of six of the most common detectors, and how to avoid paying for them. Keep reading for tips on how to save money and get the most out of your budget!
#1: Account Set Up Fees
Some companies will charge you just to set up to begin doing business with them- these can be categorized as “admin fees” for things like forms and paperwork and getting your account up and running. Some companies will charge a front-end fee for every user and location added to your roster. Believe it or not, this can sometimes cost even more than the dosimetry service itself!
Fees for the initial set up of your account can come as a surprise if you weren’t made aware, only to later notice the bill on your account. You don’t want to start off on the wrong foot and with a dent in your fresh budget.
#2: Shipping Costs Not Included
Beware the “Shipping and Handling” costs! Though you may be getting a great rate on your dosimetry service, you’ll pay in the end in hidden fees. When creating your budget, be sure to consider the cost of shipping, and consider the annual cost of service before signing on the dotted line.
Additionally, consider the cost of shipping when returning your x-ray badges, too. Some companies even offer a prepaid label that make the badge return process simple and easy. This can take the stress (and man-hours) off of taking your package to the post office to make sure the proper postage is included.
#3: Charges for Updating Badge Wearers
There could be extra charges to add or remove your badge wearers directly through your service provider. Oftentimes you will have access to make these changes on their online account management system.
This kind of fee can be to encourage you to make changes yourself and also avoid errors from miscommunication.
When you’re in charge, you’re able to clearly plan who needs badges and who to delete. You can ensure spelling and badge types are correct, as well as determine when the badges need to be received. Having these changes made through your service provider could quickly add up, especially if your staff is consistently changing.
#4: New Group Locations Adding Up
Adding more locations to an existing account is usually a good sign. There’s sometimes even tiered pricing dependent on the sum of dosimeters being used. But you may find extra shipping and handling costs or location fees take a significant portion of your budget.
When forecasting annual spend, keep in mind hidden costs such as additional location fees that can quickly put you over budget. Better yet, find a company that doesn’t charge location fees for shipments, like Radiation Detection Company.
#5: Maintenance Costs
Your account maintenance changes could bring a surprising cost to you. There could be extra cost accrued for updating admin users on your account, sensitive information such as emails, phone numbers and names of office administrative changes. Typically, this is from companies that push you to make these updates on your online account portal to avoid errors and extra paperwork.
#6: Reporting Fees
Believe it or not, you may be nickel and dimed for the very thing you signed up to receive: a dose report. While some companies make you pay extra just to get one at all, others will charge you to get custom reports that are often needed to maintain compliance. These custom dosimetry reports are sometimes referred to as individual, termination, or end-of-year reports, and are only available for a fee (not to mention lead time).
You might not even be aware of your specific office needs when you agree to a service provider, only to later find out you’re required to have reported a certain way. On top of that, if you also require paper reports and you’re unable to print them from online sources, you could end up having to pay to receive them in the mail.
3 Ways You Can Get Ahead of Missing Budget Deadlines
Review The Fine Print
Remember, that low sticker price might come with a surprise bill that you weren’t prepared to pay. The only way for some dosimetry companies to keep a low badge price is to tack on a bunch of fees to make up for the cost of service on the back-end.
Make sure to review the all-in annual cost, not just the badge price. This makes sure that when comparing costs between dosimetry companies, you are comparing apples to apples.
The most well-known action to take against prematurely emptying your dosimetry spending resources is to read through the paperwork received before agreeing to or signing anything. This not only allows you to reach an understanding of the service you’re signing up for but also gives insight into potential auxiliary charges.
Enroll In Shipping Program
Many companies provide a program for preferred shipping services. This is a flat rate cost that you can budget for without the unexpected variations and reliability concerns. It saves time and money and it’s also incredibly convenient.
Find A Trusted Dosimetry Provider
Researching prior to deciding on a radiation dosimetry monitoring provider can prevent headaches down the road. This ensures you’re receiving the best service to meet your practice needs and budget.
Areas to Research:
- Request quotes or discuss terms and conditions (look at the all-in annual costs, not just the badge price!)
- Reviews from various sources
- Word of mouth or references from other practices
- Case studies typically provided online
- Customer testimonials
Additional Ways You Could Save Some Change
Sign up for paperless billing: Some businesses charge for paper statements and there’s plenty of good reasons to ditch the paper: convenience, timeliness, security, and not to mention it’s just better for the environment.
Keeping your badges returned in time: Avoid receiving unreturned dosimeter badge fees. These can be costly and add up quickly.
Have a spare dosimeter on hand for new hires: Skip paying rush fees and new employees costing your company down time.
Compare Your Estimated Costs
Many competitors are willing to significantly discount their offering in order to retain accounts or steal accounts by price matching. This is a sneaky tactic because while competitors can match the sticker price to win business, they sneak in fees that annoy customers and make the total cost of service much higher.
If you’re concerned about staying on top of your radiation dosimetry badge budget, reach out to our team for help. At Radiation Detection Company, we won’t nickel and dime you with fees, so you know what to expect with your bill. In fact, we usually save customers money in their annual service when compared with other competitors.
With our customer first methodology, we’ll work with you to help figure out the best way to maintain your compliance needs while keeping an open conversation regarding your budget concerns.
Take these tips outlined today next time your office is under a budget review or processing the estimated costs that you need to stay within. If you keep in mind the hidden fees associated with dosimetry services, you’ll have a better budgeting plan.