Making a list and checking it twice

December 17, 2019
Emily Shiver, CVPM, CCFP

Emily Shiver, CVPM, CCFP, is regional director of operations at the Family Vet Group, headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Shiver resides in Florida.

Firstline, Firstline November/December 2020, Volume 16, Issue 6

Cross these items off your end-of-year veterinary checklist before entering 2020.


Andrey Popov/


If guys are like me, it's been a whirlwind of a year. As 2019 comes to an end, your mind is probably swimming with everything you have to accomplish at work before New Year's Eve. Every year, I refer to several checklists so I don't forget anything. Use these lists as applicable in your job to help you stay organized and efficient during the home stretch of 2019.

Holiday checklist

☐ Plan holiday party.

☐ Pick up gift for practice owner.

☐ Finalize gifts for staff.

Client checklist

☐ Send holiday cards to top 500 clients.

☐ Clean up accounts receivable (call outstanding accounts, send each client a statement, and write off account by Dec. 31).

☐ Prepare to purge records (if you have paper charts).

☐ Put together thank-you gifts for the pets lodging during December.

Employee checklist

☐ Review vacation time and sick time; give updates.

☐ Evaluate whether we can give out year-end bonuses.

☐ Map out team member goals for the first three months of 2020.

☐ Collect payments for any outstanding team member bills.

☐ Confirm mailing addresses for W-2s.

Inventory checklist

☐ Count everything in the practice; adjust numbers in practice management system system.

☐ Evaluate every revenue center to see if you are within the goals you set for 2019.

☐ Create a goal for each revenue center for 2020.

☐ Evaluate the allowances you set for every zone (treats, candles, gloves, food for lodgers and inpatients, cat litter, etc.) and make adjustments as needed for 2020. 

☐ Place orders to get you through the end of the year. Don't be tempted by year-end promotions unless you can negotiate delayed billing.

☐ Check every item in the hospital for expiration dates; discard and reorder as necessary.

☐ Run final sales histories using your ABC analysis and create new reorder points.

☐ Return any overstock items that you can.

☐ Order rabies tags.

☐ Audit redundant items to lower cost of goods sold.

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