In a poll conducted by the ADA Health Policy Institute from May 2020, 35.8% of owner dentists are recruiting dental assistants. There are more than 80% of owner dentists hiring and finding the recruitment of dental hygienists and assistants to be the hardest challenge they currently face. Over half of all dentists have reported it is extremely challenging to hire dental assistants.
The profession of dentistry is facing severe workforce shortages in all practice team positions. Salaries for new hires are being reported as unrealistic and have done nothing but increase due to the COVID-19 virus. A large number of the workforce left the profession due to early retirement, safety and more work-life balance. This creates the problem of working with fewer staff and training new hires while trying to take in as many patients as possible and accommodating their needs. The pandemic has contributed to making it extremely difficult to do on-the-job training.
There have been shortages of dental assistants and hygienists for a number of years, even before the pandemic. Dentists are trying to catch up from the lost months of 2020. They are attempting to manage the quick-rising costs of overhead. It has been an ongoing challenge to increase compensation for new hires and keep their current teams happy as well. The majority of dentists have raised pay rates for dental assistants 73.1% according to May HPI data.
The position of a dental assistant is a highly skilled position requiring education and training. And the American Dental Assistants Association is concerned with the shortage across the United States. Some dentists have addressed the shortage of dental staff by creating their own dental assistant school, which may help solve finding the best candidates to fill the vacant positions in the shortest period of time while producing passive revenue.
Create Passive Income
Creating a dental assistant school inside your practice can create additional income. It can produce high-quality dental assistants trained to your exact office culture and processes. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that dental assistant jobs are expected to grow 11% from 2020 to 2030, which is faster than the average for all occupations. While dentists’ workloads increase, they will hire more assistants to perform the routine tasks so they may devote their time to more complex procedures.
The training school can operate inside your office during your after-office hours. In most every state, you will earn income for each student who graduates the training. There is a strong demand for quality dental schools providing well-trained dental assistants who are looking to invest in a lucrative dental healthcare career.
Dentists can benefit from a consistent stream of income through the tuition fees and reduce overhead by using their own office and equipment. Office staff can also be trained to teach the school curriculum on a part-time basis. The dental office will also benefit by having access to their own talent pool of dental assistants.
Choice of Qualified Dental Assistants
Another benefit to partnering your practice with a dental assistant school is the choice of highly qualified dental professionals trained to meet your own office culture and production processes. You will already know which students are the best and most employable. These candidates have also had tons of chair-side experience. Having your practice’s own dental school can help solve the problem of needing to urgently fill a dental assistant position and going through the search, interview and background approval process.
The educational requirements for a dental hygienist could be a reason they are in short supply. By providing your own training facility, dental assistants and hygienists will be graduating from the program as an ongoing process, leaving multiple choices at your disposal for qualified candidates.
Dental Service Organizations
Another alternative is partnering with a dental service organization to provide support services to your dental practice. They provide their partner dental practices with the following:
- advanced technology
- career growth opportunities
- compliance monitoring assistance and more
So that the dental practice does not have to invest in every one of these technologies or areas. The practice can benefit from bulk purchasing agreements to save money and provide services that may have normally been unaffordable. As a DSO, your organization provides a primary resource — people. The people should be their primary focus. They must build strong relationships with your employees. These organizations can raise the quality of a dental practice and alleviate many headaches for dentists.
At Strategic Practice Solutions Dental Academy, there are training and workshop offerings including Dental Office Sales Training, Dental Practice Leadership Training, Dental Practice Human Resource Training and Dental Office Marketing Strategy. Their unique blend of consulting, coaching and training is customized to meet any dental practice budget or timeline. Getting started is easy! Contact us today by following our link and clicking on the “contact us” button! Also sign up for our newsletter to stay current on our latest tips and updates.