How to Create Your Dream Job in Eyecare

After you graduate from optometry school, there are many possible avenues for you to embark on. Private practices, lease-owned locations, and corporate locations are just a tip of the iceberg.

Many ODs start in one type of career and slowly start to realize what works best with their lifestyle and skill set. More than just better work hours or benefits, maybe you find yourself craving a consultant role? Or. maybe you don't want to work with the retail side for much longer.

If you're starting to put the pieces together to create your ideal career, we encourage you to start conversations with your colleagues. It might be closer to being reality than you think. Here's what you should be thinking about:

Steps to Building Your Dream Optometry Career

Dream Job

To dispense or not to dispense?

Perhaps part of your dream job is focusing more on the medical care and leaving the optical dispensary side to someone else. Consider working in a two door practice, only include one exam room to reduce overhead costs, and keep a small team. You can find a balance between the number of patients you're able to see with your expenses over time.

It's important to think of frames and lenses as the best solution to medical complaints, not simply products you are required to sell. Hire a team of experienced opticians to make sure you're handing patients off to good hands. 

Weekly Schedule

Despite common assumption, all ODs don't have to work M-F from 9am to 5pm. You can tweak your schedule to accommodate the highest volume of patients in the least amount of hours so that you save on staff costs overall and achieve that elusive work-life balance.

You could work longer hours to accommodate evening patients 3 days a week. Or you can work shorter weekday hours and tack on a Saturday or two every month. If possible, try changing your schedule for a short amount of time to see how your patients respond. 

Vision vs. Medical

We understand billing can get complicated when you accept all vision and medical plans. Some optometrists limit the number of vision plans they accept due to lack of net profit, which is one solution. However, this isn't the best option if you want to accommodate the majority of patients. Sending your billing work to a team of experts like VisionWeb's Revenue Cycle Management services would allow you to reduce practice costs while capturing all the insurance revenue possible.


If you can tell your interests lie in specialties such as low vision, dry eye, glaucoma, or something else, you can become an hourly consultant even just part-time. Usually, there is travel associated with these jobs and income isn't as predictable, but it is autonomous. You would also get to network with large practices and widen your scope of opportunities.

Explore more opportunities for growth by creating a 5 year plan for yourself and your practice.


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