Businesses are only as good as their employees, and this is doubly true in the case of healthcare facilities like dental offices. The challenge all practices face is attracting and then keeping good employees. Yet you need to recruit them to replace those who’ve left and to grow your practice. It is an essential aspect of dental practice management. Here’s how to attract and retain employees in your dental practice.
Compare Your Offer to the Competition
You must compare your benefits package as well as your pay rates to that offered by the competition because job seekers will be. Benefits that are relevant to them may be what attracts someone to your office and what leads them to stay.
Two-thirds of employees say they’re more likely to take a job because of the good employee package. This could be anything from flexible working arrangements to on-site childcare to a full benefits package. Consider it an investment in lower turnover because nearly 70% of employees say they’re more likely to stay with an employer who has good benefits.
Empower Your Employees
It is easy to add a variety of benefits to the benefit plan. Yet it is the work culture that can drive even good employees away. One solution is to empower your employees.
Create a culture of trust such that managers don’t feel the need to micromanage employees, though employees need to be able to talk to managers about problems they’re having. Allow them to feel comfortable reporting mistakes. Monitor the relationships managers have with their employees. Many people leave the organisation because they are clashing with a manager, regardless of pay, benefits, or work culture.
There are limits to this. You can be flexible in how people do their jobs, as long as it doesn’t violate government regulations or public health and safety. For many tasks, you should have a standard operating procedure. Then give people the freedom to make decisions in other areas and welcome their feedback on how things can be improved.
Craft an Image that Attracts Talent
Create polished, professional social media profiles for your business. This isn’t just a marketing tool with prospective patients. It is a recruiting tool for potential employees, too. After all, they’re going to be researching your company, and they won’t limit their search to your website. Talk about your dental practice’s culture as well as the services you offer to potential patients.
You could post any job postings on the social media account, though this may result in a flood of applicants. You could also post the job on a careers page on your website, though this isn’t going to result in many applicants.
Be Strategic in Your Recruiting
Know where and how to find talented dental employees. One option is relying on referrals. The caveat is that the referrals come from someone you trust, or else they don’t mean much. Yet a good referral from an existing employee makes it very likely that the person is a culture fit. It could also result in someone coming from a neighbouring practice, though you weren’t intentionally poaching your competition.
Another option is listing your job on a good job board. While anyone can list a vacancy on a generic job board, use one that is specific to dental jobs and allows you to attract top talent that isn’t wasting its time on generic job sites.
You now have resources like dentaljobsonline.ie that allow both employees and employers to find each other as quickly as possible. It saves practice managers time because you know that you’re not getting unqualified prospects.
To maximise the odds that the job posting attracts good candidates, have a detailed job posting explaining the responsibilities and expectations. It needs to be attractive but accurate. Where possible, include details about your dental practice’s culture. This results in people who don’t fit with the culture being weeded out and not applying to the job.
Posting a job on a dental job board may require you to track applicants’ CVs and schedule interviews. If you don’t have the time to do this, you can hire a staffing agency. This saves you time, though you do have to interview the top contenders to find the right person to fill the job. It may be better to offer a full-time job to temps and vocational trainees who are a culture fit.
Ask the Right Questions at the Interview
Nearly every interviewer asks about experience and qualifications. This is a necessity if you want to ensure proper patient care. Yet that isn’t all you should ask candidates about. You want to make sure that they are a good fit for your company. Does their personality clash with their potential teammates and manager? Do their values align with that of your practice? Weed out the poor culture fits because they are unlikely to stay for the long term.
Cultivate a Good Work Culture
We’ve mentioned empowering employees. Yet there is more you can do to create a good work culture. Recognise people for the work they do. It can be as simple as saying thank you, or it could take the form of bonus and incentive plans. You might give people retail vouchers as rewards for going above and beyond the call of duty.
Another option is offering more training to staff. This shows that the company is willing to invest in its people. This could be classroom training, mentoring, or online modules the company pays for. You could even offer career coaching to existing employees.
Give people a flexible work schedule where possible. You might be able to retain people if you give admin staff with children or in need of eldercare the ability to work from home part-time or the option to take time off to care for others without penalty.
If there are a lot of people leaving, ask them why. You may learn about issues you need to address so that you don’t lose even more top talent.
Hiring and replacing people is an expensive proposition. That’s why it is worthwhile to learn how to find the right people and then keep them on staff.