Professional lenses: no more hard selling

HOYA launched a new line of professional lenses in July 2022.

Several factors have prevented professional lenses from realizing their full potential, but a recently launched portfolio in Australia is helping optical practices approach the category in a whole new way.

The professional lens category has been around for several decades and has a surprisingly reasonable level of awareness among the general public (57% in one survey), but data shows it lags behind in terms of market penetration at around 3- 4%.

But with increasing demands on near and intermediate vision due to changing working environments and increased time spent indoors, lens manufacturers like HOYA are developing more advanced designs to meet this challenge. new challenge and support optical practices to communicate benefits to patients.

Professional lenses differ from Progressive Addition (PAL) lenses with unlimited powers which generally provide the wearer with clear vision in the mid to near range. PALs, on the other hand, gradually progress from far to near, with the middle section being more of a by-product of lens design.

Mr. Ulli Hentschel, National Training and Development Manager for HOYA Lens Australia, says some key hurdles have held back the professional lens category. But new information has informed the company’s new portfolio of professional lenses launched in July 2022, including Hoyalux iD WorkStyle 3, Hoyalux WorkStyle Business, Hoyalux WorkSmart Room and the SUPEREADER.

Professional lenses differ from progressive lenses, with unlimited powers that generally provide the wearer with clear vision in the intermediate to near range. Image: HOYA Australia lens.

“Some key barriers and implications that we’ve seen in professional lenses, among eye care professionals, include confusion over which lens is appropriate for each scenario – it was too complicated,” he explains.

“Some also don’t know the difference between PAL lenses and professional lenses and therefore lack the confidence to sell them, and they also fear being perceived as offering the ‘hard sell’ for a second pair to repeat customers. Among patients, there is a lack of awareness about professional glasses compared to other types of glasses, and PALs are expected to be all-in-one glasses, so there is no need from another pair.

Ulli Hentschel.

As a result, Hentschel says the category called for a more streamlined portfolio with obvious positions such as: good, better, best. There is also a need to provide clear differences between professional lenses and PALs and for practices to have a second pair strategy that will benefit the right patients.

Replacing its previous interior designs, HOYA’s new range of professional glasses seeks to overcome these challenges, with key features such as:

• Hoyalux iD WorkStyle 3 is a premium lens designed for the clearest, most comfortable and natural vision when switching between different digital devices at near to far intermediate distances up to one, two or six meters . It is available in three individual designs (Close, Screen, Space) depending on visual preferences. It is equipped with premium brand binocular harmonization technology verified with HOYA’s binocular eye model and AdaptEase technology for wider fields of view.

• Hoyalux WorkStyle Business is a mid-range solution for wearers of progressive lenses who want wide viewing areas when working at near and intermediate viewing distances, up to two or four meters. It includes View Xpansion technology which maximizes visual fields at the periphery of the lenses and offers reduced swimming and sway.

• Hoyalux WorkSmart Room is an entry-level professional lens with a range of up to four meters, allowing the user to effortlessly switch between their computer screen and keyboard, while seeing the big picture clear of her office throughout the day. It provides swimming and sway reduction and stable image perception in a dynamic environment.

• SUPEREADER is designed for heavy readers. This lens offers close distance support and is said to have much better depth than regular reading lenses. It includes Quic focus technology, providing a natural head posture for less head rotation for close-range work.

A second pair strategy

In Australia, Hentschel says that traditionally high-end or basic professional lenses have been offered, which has shut out some of the market.

That’s why HOYA has launched a new mid-range product (Hoyalux WorkStyle Business) that is more financially acceptable, while including lens technology that sits just below the company’s new premium offering (Hoyalux iD Workstyle 3).

“This means that if someone is prescribed progressive glasses and then is sold a more affordable version of our professional lenses, they will still benefit. And then maybe next year they’ll be tempted to try the premium version,” he explains.

When explaining occupancy lenses to patients, Hentschel says it’s important to understand the client’s visual requirements, asking open-ended questions about the type of screens they use for work (laptops are the most common home work device) and if he felt any discomfort. in their neck and back, or headaches and eyestrain. Another key question could be to ask them if they spend more than two hours daily indoors, immobile behind a screen.

“And then you can use that information to figure out what kind of lenses they’re using for screen use. And that’s really important because we have a range of different lenses that people can choose from. , which will be suitable for various tasks.

The company recently hosted a Continuing Professional Development session with Optical Dispensers Australia to explain these methods in more detail. It has also developed a range of consumer brochures, desk pads, posters and fact sheets with easy-to-follow graphics that allow practices to clearly demonstrate the benefits of each type of HOYA professional lens.

While there’s a common perception of professional lenses as a second-pair product, Hentschel says some practices might want to think of it another way.

“Depending on the person, you might say that a professional lens should actually be the primary pair and the progressive lens might be the second pair. That’s because a lot of people spend the majority of their day sitting in front of a screen,” he says.

“And then when you’re driving home, maybe from work, or going out to the shops, maybe you don’t need to have the most advanced progressive lens, so having a professional lens more advanced may actually be more beneficial to that person.”

Useful questions to ask customers

• Have you been irritated by visual discomfort, unnatural posture or eyestrain due to prolonged proximity to work?

• Although you don’t need any distance vision correction, do you think your current reading glasses are capable of providing good intermediate distance vision?

• Would you like the convenience of moving indoors without having to remove your reading glasses?

• Could you see a benefit in having lenses specially designed to meet your specific visual needs and working distance?

• Like shoes, professional lenses have different designs for different functions and activities.

More reading

The new range of HOYA professional glasses meets a growing demand

How professional lenses hit the sweet spot

About Marion Alexander

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