Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Base Salary (AKA Minimum Guarantee) for Associate Dentists

Over the past ten years, base salaries for General Dentists seeking associateships have become more commonplace in response to an increasingly competitive dental job market. Several factors have played into this change, including the ever-growing level of student debt and increased presence of Dental Service Organizations (DSOs) in the industry. From a practice owner’s perspective, the practice can use the guaranteed minimum to say “we have the patients and potential production available - can you produce?” As such, there is a perceived financial security with a base salary.
Below are some common ways we’ve seen dental practices pay base premiums to its associates.

Common Ways Dental Practices Pay Base Minimums
  1. Daily/Monthly Draw on future commission : This structure is, by far, the most common method in dentistry. The practice will pay the associate dentist a fixed amount that will be deducted out of the associate’s future commission.
    1. Pro : the associate has greater security at the beginning because there is a cash flow.
    2. Con : if the associate does not produce/collect enough the practice cannot recoup the draw if the employment is terminated by either side.
    3. Most common example : $500 to $600 per day ($10,000 to $12,000 per month).

  2. Salary + bonus : This structure offers both sides more of a win/win at the early part of the relationship. The practice and associate agree to a set salary that is paid regardless of the associate’s production. The bonus is a carrot for achieving a higher level of production.
    1. Pro : Practice can pay based on what it expects associate will/should produce while offering a bonus if goal/expectations are exceeded.
    2. Con : Such as the draw, if the associate is underperforming the practice will lose money on the arrangement.
    3. Example : $10,000 month; Associate can bonus by being paid 15% of collections on anything exceeding $35,000 per month. Calculate monthly or quarterly.

  3. Salary only : As simple as it sounds. The Associate is paid a base salary. In most cases, a practice does this because it realizes there needs to be a lot of growth in the practice overall. It is more of an investment in the associate and potential of the practice. In many cases a practice and associate will agree at a future time to convert from salary to commission in order for the associate to be incentivized on their production.
    1. Pro : Great for a new grad that receives mentorship from a senior doctor. Allows the practice to secure an associate without making unrealistic claims to what an associate can earn on a commission plan.
    2. Con : if you don’t have an associate who sees the big picture, you can have an associate who doesn’t strive to grow in this position due to the lack of incentives, thus making a bonus option a great addition to the salary.
    3. Example : $120,000 per year.
Why should you offer a base minimum?
  • Excellent way for practice to back up their claims of available production and income potential
  • Offers initial short term security to associate by providing a minimum cash flow
  • Helps while production and patient base is built up by associate
  • Competition for talented dentists
  • Security for your practice by limiting associate turnover

Friday, September 5, 2014

Is Your Training Program Attracting or Detracting Candidates?

Every organization offers some degree of on-job training, at a minimum during the onboarding process, but the quality of a company's training program can have a direct impact on the level at which employees remain engaged and motivated. Simply put, your organization's training and development opportunities, or lack thereof, could mean the difference between employees that stay or leave. In this post-recession era where attracting and retaining candidates is critical, companies should be asking themselves, what separates their training programs from the competition?

Click to enlarge.

As the hiring outlook continues to improve, more candidates are on the move in search of better job opportunities. Surprisingly, salary is generally not the motivating factor. In fact, according to Badgeville, the #1 gamification and behavior management provider, their 2013 Employee Recognition survey found that 76 percent of employees chose opportunities for growth as one of the top reasons they would stay with an organization over financial motivators.

Here is some advice to companies looking to modernize their training programs:

Routinely take inventory of the materials and delivery methods
the company uses to facilitate training. Look for areas that can be improved or updated, and think of ways to make the process more efficient and engaging.

Consider if the company's training program is versatile enough
to accommodate different learning styles and generational preferences. Millennials may prefer a more interactive training experience, whereas Boomers may be satisfied with binders and paperwork.

Research new technologies
that can help breathe new life into your training program. If the company is predominately using classroom-style seminars, new hires could be checking out before the onboarding process is even over.

In today's job market which is candidate-driven in the executive, managerial and professional space, companies have to do everything they can to differentiate themselves from the competition. Discussing the unique aspects of your training program during the recruitment process could be the thing that sets your organization apart.

ETS Dental is a Dental Recruiting firm specializing in finding and placing General Dentists, Dental Specialists, and Dental Staff throughout the United States. www.etsdental.com