Thursday, November 5, 2009

Dental Economics-Dental News - 2009 Dental Economics®/Levin Group Practice Survey

Dental Economics-Dental News - 2009 Dental Economics®/Levin Group Practice Survey

November 2, 2009

For more on this topic, go to and search using the following key words: Dr. Roger Levin, annual practice survey, practice overview, practice production, collections, billings, overhead, wages, benefits, doctor satisfaction.

Editor's Note: This is Part I of a two–part series discussing the results of the most recent practice survey, conducted by Dental Economics® and Levin Group. Part II of the series will appear in the November issue of DE.

How is dentistry doing? In light of the economic downturn experienced throughout the country since last fall, many of you might expect the answer to be “bad,” “awful” or “terrible.” Fortunately, that is not the case. The results of the Dental Economics®/Levin Group 2009 Annual Practice Survey show dentistry to be holding its own, with relatively modest dips in practice production and new patient visits.

Although it was not a great year by any means, dentistry remains a resilient profession as dentists continue to prove themselves as resourceful entrepreneurs who can adapt to changing times. Some recent trends include:


Click here to view survey results...

Dental Economics-Dental News - Tips for practice growth in difficult times

Dental Economics-Dental News - Tips for practice growth in difficult times

November 2, 2009

by Carol Tekavec, CDA, RDH

For more on this topic, go to and search using the following key words: practice growth, marketing, advertising, patient education, communications, treatment-planning, patient financing, Carol Tekavec.

Most business leaders agree that at times of market stress, marketing should increase. Rather than cutting back on “promotional” activities, putting your practice out in the forefront of your community is recommended. Advertising, per se, can be helpful, depending on how ads are designed. Advertising can also be expensive. Here are a few ideas for promoting a practice that are not expensive, and in some cases, free: ....


Monday, November 2, 2009

Confessions of a Dental Recruiter

Written by Mark Kennedy, Managing Director of ETS Dental.

Sooner or later, every practice is faced with seeking a new Associate, Partner or Owner. In the past twelve months ETS Dental has recruited and placed more than 200 Dentists with independent practices and clinics around the country and some of the lessons we’ve learned may be beneficial to you when it comes time to bring a new dentist into your practice.

The best candidate already has a job
As a whole, the population of Dentists is truly at full-employment. Most great candidates are employed, but passively seeking a better long-term opportunity. In fact, only one out of every 20 Dentists we place come as a direct result of an ad…the rest come from networking.

There’s a reason the best opportunities aren’t advertised
The best associate or partnership opportunities are rarely advertised. If a practice is losing a key associate it is typically in the best interest of the practice NOT to advertise this fact until a replacement is found. Some patients and key staff will certainly leave if they know their Dentist is leaving the practice.

The best time to start looking is early
There is an old Chinese saying, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today.”
Very few good candidates are desperate for change. The vast majority are willing to wait a few months or a few years. Likewise, no one practices forever…there is usually an identifiable window of opportunity when a partner would like to step back or retire…the closer a practice waits until that time, the more they limit their options.

Practice Owners with a plan hire the best Associates
Interview preparation is a two-way street. While much has been written to help the potential hire prepare for an interview, we have found it equally essential for interviewers to have specific communication goals to achieve through the interview process. Let’s face it, most dental practices conduct comparatively few interviews.
If you found the “perfect associate candidate,” I can guarantee you that your perfect candidate probably has multiple options. Have a plan in place. Do you have a sample contract? How will the associate be compensated? Would he or she be offered a buy-in? If you can’t answer these questions, you will lose the best candidates.

Relocation, relocation, relocation
More that 60 percent of the dentists we recruit and place relocate. Many are looking for the opportunity. Many are looking to get closer to the people or places they love. Dentists coming out of a residency or the military are nearly always located in a different city or state. When you are looking for a new associate, you probably won’t find them in your own back yard.

Whether you are a practice owner looking for a candidate or a Dentist seeking a long-term practice opportunity, the moral of the story is the same:
• Start looking far in advance.
• Work hard to find multiple options.
• Be prepared if the right opportunity or candidate comes available.
The best candidate or practice for you may be somewhere you don’t expect
Carl Guthrie is a Account Executive for ETS Dental. ETS Dental is an excutive recruiting firm specializing in finding and placing dentists, dental specialists, and dental staff across the United States.
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