The dental industry is growing more competitive as qualified employees are becoming harder to find. Every dental practice is fiercely looking for dependable, productive, and honest dental staffing candidates. This is necessitated by a shift to an increasingly mature population, a service-based economy, and fewer young people joining the working class. Therefore, dentists need to devise new strategies to minimize employee turnover. While the demand for skilled workers will increase in the next 20 years, their supply is expected to decline. Therefore, dentists need to recognize that their biggest challenge is not technology or managed care, but a lack of skilled people to fill dentistry positions.
For the moment, dentists must strive to hire the best staffing candidate and retain them in their dental practices for as long as possible. The cost of hiring the wrong person impacts the payroll and also devastates practice morale.
Hiring the wrong person happens because of traditions such as hiring someone with no dental experience who seems qualified. You spend a lot of time training the employee, which eats into valuable time that should be spent attending to other important matters. It is difficult to match a candidate to the right job; you need more than a good resume, an interview, and instinct. An employee who perfectly fits one position may not fit in another.
Successful selection entails a clear understanding of the intricacies of the open position. It requires the dentist to visualize how the candidate will interact with patients and other employees, and if he or she will accomplish the required tasks. Therefore, a selection process should focus not only on the candidate’s skills but how well they can perform the job at hand.
How to Acquire the Best Candidates for Dental Practices
- Develop comprehensive job descriptions
Most dentists do not include a detailed job description when looking to hire, as they see it as wasting time. They fail to understand that job descriptions are vital when looking for a candidate to hire. You need to create a job description outlining the skill set you are looking for, the expectations, and job responsibilities.
When you receive an application from a potential candidate, send them a job description before setting up an interview, if one was not included in the advertisement. This will assist them in knowing what you are looking for so candidates not meeting the description can step aside. Doing this will save time and frustrations as you will avoid wasting time on people who do not fit your requirements.
- Create detailed job listings
Create a precise and detailed job listing to attract the best candidates. Do not forget to use active words that illustrate the role and to customize the ad to the vacant position. The ad should include relevant information such as position status, office location, and salary range. More than half the prospects will ignore your ad if the salary range is missing; this means that you will lose quality candidates because of a scanty job listing.
- Review resumes in detail
You cannot judge a candidate based solely on a resume. A resume is like a sales pitch where candidates can lie or exaggerate their experiences. Remember that nowadays there are professional writers who prepare the resumes for job seekers to help them at least get an interview.
Look for red flags in a resume, such as gaps in employment and lack of job details. Also, compare your job description to the resume and establish if the candidate is a good fit for the position.
- Perform phone interviews
Most dentists forget about this step and arrange an in-person interview, which is a mistake. A 20-minute phone call can tell you a lot about a candidate such as their employment history and their expected compensation. As you carry on the conversation, you learn if the candidate is a good fit. If you decide that the person does not fit your job description, you will save yourself the money and time involved in a physical interview.
- Ask open-ended interview questions
When it comes to the one-on-one interview, ask relevant questions. Ask open-ended questions to give the candidate a chance to give detailed explanations. If they only provide vague answers, consider it a red flag.
- Perform pre-employment testing
Personality temperament and pre-employment evaluation tests are useful in deciding the suitability of a candidate. It is good to conduct the tests before you offer a candidate the job.
- Check references
The candidate should provide references, which you should contact. A conversation with previous supervisors and colleagues provides a better understanding of how the person performed other jobs. This will help in determining their appropriateness for the vacant position.
- Staffing company for dental practices
If after following all the steps above you still do not have the right candidate, consider the services of a staffing company. Working with a dental staffing firm will provide the following benefits:
- Receive advice and guidance – Apart from handling the paperwork, dental staffing companies have ample knowledge about the industry and provide relevant guidance on individual cases.
- Locate the right dental staffing candidate – Dental recruiters know about what goes on in a dental office. They use this information to understand your corporate needs and culture, which assist in finding the best fit. Recruiters realize that your practice relies on quality patient care and staff cohesion. Staffing companies have developed a working relationship with dental practices; hence they can obtain confidential information when they need it. They can tell when a candidate is hiding something or is telling the truth.
- Access to desirable dental staffing candidates – Since the company deals with finding employees for dentists, they have a database of those seeking employment and also the ones they have helped find jobs. Staffing companies have practical ways of identifying talent and knowing the ones that could fit your corporate culture, including those that can develop an interest in joining your practice. In the end, you will benefit from an expansive and improved pool of talent enabled by your partnership with a staffing company.
- Quick process – The recruiting process is expedited to enable you to move forward. The process goes on without interrupting your practice on issues such as interviews and calling references. If you decide to recruit on your own, the process can be long and slow, which will only hurt your business. You can lose a good candidate leading to interruptions in your daily functions while searching for the best candidate; a staffing company helps you avoid all these disruptions.
- Best chance of offer acceptance – Dental staffing companies have a better chance of convincing a candidate to accept the job offer. The staffing company offers logical reasons why they will fit in your practice and presents a competitive and compelling offer. Dental professionals have the freedom to work in any location and in different practices. The staffing company will ensure that they extend the offer to excellent choices and make the prospects see the advantages of joining your team.
In conclusion, in this day and age it is vital to find the best employee for your practice. Follow the guidelines above and it will lead you to the best candidate for the practice. When you finally find one, try to retain them in the practice for as long as possible.