JOB DESCRIPTION: Customer Service/Veterinary Receptionist

The purpose of this position is to serve as customer service representative at Sunnyvale Veterinary Clinic to perform record keeping and clerical duties related to patient care and treatment, and to provide miscellaneous support to the entire health care team. These service functions include, but are not limited to, reception (visitor and telephone), maintenance of veterinary medical records, accounts maintenance, cash processing, data entry, word processing and mail service. This position requires a practical knowledge of hospital organization and services, the basic rules and regulations governing visitors and animal patient treatment, data transcribing, word processing, and a practical knowledge of the standard procedures, veterinary records and terminology used in the hospital.

Primary Responsibilities 

  • Provide friendly, quality client care to the patients and clients of Sunnyvale Veterinary Clinic.

  • Receive incoming calls, screen those that are handled by other health care team members and take care of routine calls. The routine calls include those seeking information about veterinary services (“telephone shoppers”). Provide knowledgeable sub-professional advice concerning the care and treatment of animals.

  • Follow established hospital policies and procedures in referring clients for immediate treatment of their pets when requests are accompanied by complaints of acute symptoms. Determine nature of injury/illness and attempt to reassure distressed pet owners. Determine whether immunizations and/or tests are current. Recommend update of necessary immunizations and/or tests to clients when applicable.

  • Schedule appointments, obtaining all necessary data concerning the patient and owner. Prepare all required forms in advance when possible.

  • Prepare to receive appointments by retrieving client records, preparing needed forms in advance of clients’ arrival. Complete required forms such as new client form, patient visit form, client report, consent forms, estimates, payment agreements, etc and obtain all necessary information.

  • Check clients in - greet clients in a professional, friendly, hospitable manner.

  • Discharge patients. Review charts of patients being discharged from the clinic for completeness of information, make new appointments or note changes in patient status as necessary. Enter charges and set up future reminders in system. Present clients with medications, instruction.

  • Assure that all financial obligations are met by owners. Collect client fees, make change, process credit card transactions and assist in making count of cash drawer, run end of day transactions.

  • Oversee and/or perform over-the-counter selling of specialty merchandise comprised of pet grooming aids and sundry veterinary items. Exercise technical knowledge of products sold and demonstrate salesmanship abilities. Explain and demonstrate products, answer questions concerning products purchase/use.

  • Fill veterinary prescriptions with appropriate medication; provide routine instructions to owners concerning prescription for medications.

  • Collect lab specimens from pet owners, match patient record to the sample and submit samples to veterinary technician or nurse.

  • Assist in the updating of client files; prepare and mail thank you cards and “welcome aboard” cards, reminders. Follow-up with clients when clinic records indicate no recent visits.

  • As required, enter data into the computer system, retrieve and modify computerized records. The practice management software includes, but is not limited to, such areas as reminder list of patients for periodic notifications, receipt and/or invoicing to update medical/financial records; accounting to include the general ledger, accounts payable, accounts receivable, billing and aging of accounts, income distribution, inventory control, client records, pet records, medical records, payroll; word processing to produce letters for general correspondence and special mailings to clients, etc.

  • Perform a variety of clerical duties, receiving, sorting, distributing mail, sending out mailings, cleaning, organizing reception area, type memos, correspondence, reports and other documents.  Assist in the ordering, receiving, stocking and distribution of supplies.

  • Perform/oversee the entering of daily business and hospital invoices.

  • Must be able to maintain a positive working environment.

  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Controls Over Work

The receptionist works under the direct supervision of the Customer Service Manager and the Practice Manager, who will indicate general assignments, limitations and priorities. Recurring assignments are performed independently. Deviations or unfamiliar situations are referred to the supervisor. Completed work is reviewed for technical accuracy and compliance with established procedures.

Skills and Knowledge

  • Possession of strong organizational skills.

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills. Possess exceptional interpersonal communication skills.

  • Knowledge of hospital procedures and operating instructions for making appointments, assembling patient medical records, relaying information regarding patient’s condition, and compiling and submitting data on patients treated. 

  • Knowledge of the spelling and meaning of commonly used terminology

  • equires strong client service skills. Personal contacts are with pet owners affected by a variety of problems, visitors and other healthcare team members. Considerable tact and diplomacy is required. Must accurately relay owner’s account of the medical complaint(s) of the pet(s) involved to the healthcare team member who will be involved in treating the patient(s).

  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  • Ability to work independently on assigned tasks as well as to accept direction on given assignments.

  • Knowledge of computers and relevant software applications including MS Office (Word).

Physical Effort

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the primary functions of this job.

  • Frequently position self and move about the reception, use office machinery such as fax machines and computer, and assist clients with merchandise.

  • Often transports inventory to stock shelves. Frequently handling 30 pounds and occasionally handling 40 pounds.

  • Often transports patients to weigh on scales

  • Frequently required to communicate with clients, team members and associates. Must be able to exchange accurate information.

Work Environment

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is exposed to hazards associated with aggressive patients; hazards associated with infected animals and controlled substances; exposure to unpleasant odors and noises; exposure to bites, scratches and animal wastes; possible exposure to contagious diseases.

Essential Functions

  • Demonstrate professional conduct in all phone calls - answering client inquiries in a prompt and friendly manner, scheduling appointments, recording messages.

  • Requires strong communication and client service skills. Considerable tact and diplomacy is required. Ability to greet clients in a professional, friendly, hospitable manner - check clients in, discharge patients.

  • Collect client fees, post and record payments, make change, process credit card transactions and run end of day transactions.

  • Input data into computer software system.

  • Open and close practice.

  • Ability to multi-task.

  • Perform a variety of clerical duties, accurately input data into computer software system, mailings, cleaning, organizing reception area, type memos, correspondence, reports and other documents.

  • Regular attendance and timeliness are an essential function in order to fulfill the requirements of this position.

  • Perform general physical activities that require bending, standing, stooping, moving from room to room, sit, talk, and listen; may be required to walk or stand for long periods of time; will use hands to manipulate, handle, or feel; will reach with hands and arms.

  • The employee must be able to lift, carry and handle objects weighing 40 lbs. (dogs,food)


The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work to be performed in this job. These statements are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and activities required of the position.


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© 2020 Sunnyvale Veterinary Clinic, Inc.

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