Staffing | Stream Dental

Tag: Staffing.

Your new hire is about to start their FIRST day at your practice! They are feeling excited but nervous – they don’t know anyone or are familiar with your systems or preferences yet. Nevertheless, they are excited to start the first day of what could be many loyal years working in your practice. That is the way you need to view their first day as well; the beginning of a long-lasting working relationship.

This individual will be with you for 80% of their day! They will be taking care of YOUR patients and building YOUR practice. You want and NEED them to be successful because the reputation and success of your practice is dependent on it. Why not take the right steps and set them up for success — it benefits EVERYONE involved; your team, patients and practice’s reputation. There are a few key things you can do to ensure your new hires success. Start by downloading our New Hire Onboarding Checklist to get the 411.

Get the Welcome Wagon Ready! 
You know the drill during the first few minutes on the job, your tendency may be to parade your new hire around the office so quickly they will barely be able to manage a few handshakes as you announce, “Everyone, this is Samantha; Samantha, this is the team.” Before you know it, the team will jump back into what they were doing and the new hire is left standing around feeling alone and overwhelmed!

As a manager/owner, you can speed up the acclimation process for your new employees by spending a little more time on the introductions and—here’s the important part—making some connections from the start.

Instead of simply introducing your new hire by name, give a little background: “This is Samantha, our new Administrator. She’s amazing with Dentrix reports, so she’ll be a huge help with analyzing our current recall strategy and getting pending treatment back into our chairs and keep us all busy! In the meantime, she’ll be available to help show us how to pull up these reports for—so touch base with her to let her know what you need.”

With this, you have acknowledged your new employee’s strengths (and made him or her feel valuable from day one) and given current employees an opening to make the first contact and get the new hire immediately involved.

 Have a Plan 
This scenario is all too common and extremely ineffective…

“The minute I arrived on my worst first day, I felt like an afterthought. My boss ushered me to my desk, handed me their procedure manual and training videos to watch on their practice software program, and, after logging in, they told me to “play around and get comfortable” with the system. They said they had their own work to get done— so I was on my own. At the end of the almost unbearable day, I left the office doubting my decision to accept the offer. This isn’t what I expected at all!” This is what a candidate said asking for help to find her another office after this experience! NOT GOOD!

Is this how you want them to feel? I am sure you want them to be excited about their new position, eager to tackle their own projects, and striving to make an impact in your practice. And that doesn’t usually come from a thrown-together training plan that makes your new employee feel like you couldn’t care less that he or she actually showed up!

I know (from experience) that everyday responsibilities are always waiting to get in the way. But taking the time to plan out a variety of assignments or training tasks for the new hire—ideally, for at least the first week on the job—will not only help them get up to speed quicker but assure him that you’re truly invested in their success. Meaning: they will be much likelier to show up on day two confident that they are in the right place.

Assign a Mentor 
Find one or two employees who are your top-notch, A-type, go-getters who can take your new hire under their wing! They can show them the ropes and teach them the RIGHT skill sets and habits to make them successful. Your new employee will also feel much more at ease knowing there are a few people who “have their back” and can ask any questions they may have along the process.
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While it’ll still take plenty of time, training, and coaching to get your new employee up to speed, these small steps will lay the groundwork to get them familiar with the team and make sure they feel like an important, valued member of your practice.  And that will make day two (and onward!) a whole lot more successful!

We just covered a few small steps on what you can do to make their first day a success! But there is much more involved so make sure to grab our checklist and you can see what else should be on your to-do list for that first day.

 

Before we begin, let’s do a recap on the past few posts before we dive deeper into the interview process.

The most important part before embarking on the hunt for your next employee of the month, is to know the direction of where you want to take your office in the next 5 years. Figuring out your roadmap will help you see what type of qualities and skillset you need to look for now to help you get to where you want to be! So now you have your roadmap ready, understand the qualities and skills you are looking for. Let’s look at some interview questions to ask potential candidates and find out what to look for in their answers. Learn what TO ask & what NOT to ask when interviewing your next employee! Download your free guide now!

Confessions from a Dental Recruiter

No matter what position I had to fill, my guideline was always to find answers to the following five questions: Is the candidate able to do the job? Is the candidate motivated to do the job? Is the candidate adaptable/malleable? Will this candidate fit the office culture? Will this candidate provide excellent customer service/patient care? For each of these five questions, I ask a series of further probing questions. The questions I ask are crafted so that candidates give real-life examples using SAR statements (S = Situation in which the behavior took place, A = the action the candidate took to address the situation, R = results of the action)

Let’s use the examples we listed in last week’s blog post:
1. Tell me about a time where you went above and beyond for a patient
The answer to this question will give you a glimpse of a time when the candidate took the initiative and went above what the job required to make sure the patient was satisfied and taken care of. It also will show how proactive they are to thinking of solutions to problems. Another thing to think about is seeing how you as the principle dentist or owner, would want your current employees to react or handle a situation to make sure a patient was taken care of.

2. Tell me about the most difficult procedure you have performed? Why did you find this difficult and what did you learn while performing it?
Here you are gaining insight as to how adaptable the candidate is, their motivation AND if they are capable of doing the job. It shows how they were able to overcome a challenging situation, what they learned from it and how they were able to grow from it! This will give you insight into their critical thinking ability, see if they will use this as a learning opportunity and their attitude towards the situation.

3. How would you handle a situation where you were faced with an irate patient who was angry over the length of their wait before they saw the doctor?
Now let’s face it, this situation comes up from time to time in every practice. You want to make sure that your team will handle this stressful situation with poise, empathy and with professionalism. Again, another situational question to see how they have reacted in the past and ensure this line up with your values and high standards of customer service.

For example, if this is a for a dental admin position: If they answer by saying they took the initiative to go into the clinic, ask the Dentist and auxiliary staff as to when they will be able to see the patient, report back to the patient, apologizing for the wait and informing them it shouldn’t be much longer only X minutes, offer them refreshment or opportunity to reschedule if they are pressed for time, then offering Starbucks gift card etc.
This answer shows they value and respects the patients time and concerns. They did not make some excuse or brush the patient off saying it’s a busy day. They were adaptable and figured out a solution and diffused the situation.
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Asking questions doesn’t end at the interview stage. The answers you received during your interview is a great starting point but you want to be sure this is the RIGHT person for your office. Next week, we will find out the answer to “How do I REALLY know this is the right person for my practice?” We will look into conducting reference and background checks to make sure they are who they say they are!

Welcome back to week 3 of our “How to Attract & Retain Top Talent” series. Last week, we discussed what to look for when hiring your next employee.  We talked about some top-notch qualities to look for when hiring.  This week we will be discussing Recruitment and the Screening Process.

If you have a thriving practice, hiring someone becomes a tough decision, as you want only the best on your team. During the interview, you may have felt excited about a candidate, only to find out a short time later that he or she has not turned out as per your expectations.

Let’s go over some ideas on how you should screen potential candidates and avoid any future

Accurate job descriptions

Remember this all goes back to what we have been discussing the past few weeks: reverse engineer how you want to grow your practice and then determine what KPIs you need to look for with your new hires. Using this information and putting together a job description for this position will help you in more ways than one! Your job description should state what the ideal candidate needs to bring to the practice.  A good job description provides a clear and concise summary of a position’s duties and responsibilities. It outlines the essential qualifications and requirements of a candidate. In addition, a properly written job description explains the core competencies required for the position. First, it will serve as your checklist when you are screening and interviewing. Secondly, when you hire your new employee, it will outline exactly what is expected of them and you start the relationship on the right foot. Third, it will help with future performance evaluations to see where they are excelling and in which areas they need coaching and further improvement. I am sure I can name about 10 other reasons about how important a job description is but we will save that for another day ☺

Change the focus of the interview

The natural tendency during the interview is to concentrate on technical questions. Don’t get me wrong; the need for technical skills should never be undermined. If you look back at all the encounters with your previous employees that didn’t work out, you are bound to agree that things did not work out with the employee, not ‘only’ because of technical skills. There is always more to it than that. You also need to take into consideration the individual’s personality and attitude. Remember that someone’s true personality and attitude come to the forefront after a point of time. If you are basing your screening process only on technical knowledge, then the entire focus of your interview is incorrect. To hire great employees, one should include both personal, behavioral AND technical questions in the screening process.

Asking the right questions

Depending on the level of candidate you’re interviewing, their responses can provide excellent insights into their level of acumen and philosophies.   Make sure to look for compatibility, not just likeability. We tend to hire people who are similar to us but remember you already figured out your new hire avatar so stick to that.

Here are a few examples:
– Tell me about a time where you went above and beyond for a patient
– Tell me about the most difficult procedure you have performed? Why did you find this difficult and what did you learn while performing it?
– How would you handle a situation where you were faced with an irate patient who was angry over the length of their wait before they saw the doctor?

Good questions hey? See how their answers line up or reflect the KPIs you are looking for. Asking situational questions where the answers will show their personal, behavioral and technical abilities. Next week we will dive deeper into this subject and really analyze questions and the answers to listen for!

Until next week!

One of the biggest struggles every business has is finding and keeping great employees! But it doesn’t have to be! Indiana Jones didn’t find the Holy Grail without using a map and neither should you.  Indiana Jones was prepared and knew where to go and we want to help get you prepared too.

The most important part before embarking on the hunt for your next employee of the month is to know the direction of where you want to take your office in the next 5 years. Figuring out your roadmap will help you see what type of qualities and skillset you need to look for now to help you get to where you want to be!

“Why is this important? Can’t I just hire for what I need now?”

Yes, yes you certainly can! However, this is more of a band-aid solution and can help fill your temporary needs. But what about in the next 6-12 month? What if you are adding new services or software to your office? Wouldn’t it be helpful and more efficient to hire someone who has experience with that so they can immediately add value to your practice? What if you are looking at increasing your case starts or treatment acceptance and can look at hiring a dedicated and experience treatment coordinator who can focus on that day in and day out? See how this goes hand in hand and why it is important to think of this now versus having to search for someone with these skill sets later. Or worse, you overstaff your clinic instead of finding one person who can handle all of these roles and responsibilities.

This step requires some serious forethought! Remembering your mission/vision statement helps to keep in mind what your practice short and long-term aspirations are. This can help you analyze and understand the traits and skills needed to help you reach your goals!


The only time you start thinking about your staffing needs is when you are filling a recent vacancy. We see it all the time, practices go into panic mode and settle for hiring the best candidate from the pile of candidates that apply! Big mistake!

Even before you have the need to hire someone, you should identify the traits, qualities, skills and cultural fit that you are looking for. Having this AHEAD of time actually helps you in the screening process. Write it down and create your checklist. Really think about the traits and skills you are looking for and divide them into: must have, nice to have and non-negotiable.

Bring this checklist into every interview and use this as your road map to ensure you do not forget the big picture! Your practice success is counting on it!

Do it right the FIRST time

Do you know what making a bad hire can cost your dental practice? 41% of surveyed employers who said a bad hire in the past year had cost them at least $25,000. OUCH- that’s a hard pill to swallow! Unless you enjoy throwing away money, you need to kick your bad hiring habits before it drives your business into the ground!

The one challenge that every dental business owner has in common is to find, hire and retain high-quality individuals, all the while running a practice and maintaining a high quality of patient care. And that’s no easy task! Stay tuned each week as we dive deeper into attracting top talent for your dental office; what to look for and how to find them!

Hiring new employees is an opportunity to re-evaluate your goals, streamline your systems and improve your practice. 

Terminating an employee for any reason can be a very stressful and unpleasant situation and it can even be somewhat overwhelming, even a bit confusing… written notice, termination pay, progressive discipline, termination for cause, without cause. So many things to know and understand.

Take it step by step:
Proper preparation prior to the termination can get you prepared for what is to come but it also helps ensure that the employee leaves with dignity and helps mitigate risk to your practice.

Now sometimes, it is necessary to eliminate a position that has become redundant or you may have to lay off employees due to business slowdowns. Other times, terminations may be due to poor performance or inappropriate conduct. Regardless of the reason, it is important to terminate the business relationship in a professional manner, with appropriate notice, and in a way that meets at least, the minimum legislative requirements for your province/state.

An employee who is wrongfully terminated or terminated without cause and not provided with an appropriate notice period (or payment in lieu), will now have reason to initiate legal action to recover the monies owing, or to contact an employment standards officer to open an investigation. Which is something I am sure you would not like to happen!
It’s much better to understand the appropriate way to handle terminations within your workplace so that you avoid any type of litigation or investigation in the first place.

Terminations caused by poor performance: Some employers will avoid conflict as long as possible and will continue putting up with inappropriate conduct or poor performance from an employee, rather than starting the disciplinary process. Having a disruptive employee, or someone who does not seem to pull their weight, can begin to have a negative effect on the rest of the staff; and that is something you do not want! When employees see that an underperforming colleague is allowed to continue down such a path, the rest of your staff may become resentful and it can result in lower productivity and higher turnover.
Poor performance or inappropriate conduct should be addressed as soon after the incident as possible, or upon noticing deteriorating performance. In some cases, working with the employee can help to turn things around without having to take further disciplinary action.

However, if the results are still not acceptable, it is critical to act quickly, document all discussions, and adhere to legislated requirements for your jurisdiction before terminating employment.

Cover the basics:
1. When an employee is hired, it is important to have them sign an employment agreement.  This contract will clearly outline information that outlines roles, expectations, salaries, probationary period and termination provisions.
2. Conduct regular performance reviews to provide feedback, guidance and create an action plan for areas of improvement.
3. If there is a cause for progressive discipline it must be documented to show you provided enough opportunity & guidance for them to improve.
4. If at that point, things are not improving you must contact an HR professional for advice to ensure that your documentation and process is appropriate to minimize your risk.

If you proceed with deciding to terminate- it does not end there!

There are series of steps you still need to take to ensure everything is done correctly the day of. We can’t stress this enough! The decision to terminate should never be taken lightly. If not handled properly, it can also result in expensive litigation. This is not a position you would want to find yourself in.

We have put together a termination checklist for you to download. It walks you through what needs to be done the day of termination.  Visit: https://streamdental.leadpages.co/terminationchecklist/  
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Stream Dental understands that you have a lot on your plate, as the owner of a growing Dental Practice, usually having little or no in-house Human Resource expertise! Our new services allow us to become your virtual HR department. Offering human capital solutions that provide the greatest impact on workplace productivity, employee engagement & retention and help you grow your business with the right people and processes.
Contact us today: www.streamdental.ca

 

Let’s start off by addressing what a confidentiality agreement is. It’s an agreement for your team to keep everything in your office confidential. The purpose of the agreement is for your team members to agree to maintain confidentiality regarding all confidential materials, patient information, processes, marketing, pending business transactions… just to name a few! This agreement outlines that all confidential information is kept strictly confidential both during and after their term of employment.

Why is this necessary?
As a business owner, you have worked hard to grow your practice and to provide the best treatment to your patients and build your reputation. It is important for you to protect all your hard work by having a confidentiality agreement in place. Everyone who comes to your office to work should sign one! This means all new and current team members should sign! One other area that is often overlooked is any temporary employees or candidates that come into your office for working interviews. You want to protect you and your practice.

We understand that temporary relief & working interviews are common in this industry, but have you ever given much thought to getting potential candidates to sign a confidentiality agreement prior to their interview?

The same goes for working interviews. These potential candidates may come into contact with, view, or handle confidential medical and personal patient information, products and/or system. This is information that is not readily available to the public and may compromise your practices competitive advantage in the marketplace in the event that sensitive business information relating to your practice is divulged.

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Your business deserves to be protected! You worked so hard to start and build your business– make sure it’s protected! If you are missing this agreement, we have you covered! It might be some time to review your HR protocols and see what items are missing. Take our Dental HR audit check-up by downloading this ebook!

 

 

Human Resources gets a bad rap sometimes and is often misunderstood & over-looked! It goes beyond just hiring and firing! HR deals with the human aspects/needs of both employees and employers. Many dental practices do not have an HR department and the duties often fall on the Dentist or the Office Manager- who do not have up to date training and information on employment standards & regulations.

What is HR?:
Let’s start off by talking about what the Human Resource department does. The HR department needs to provide the knowledge, necessary tools, training, administrative services, coaching, staff development, legal and management advice, and talent management oversight that the rest of the organization needs for successful operation. HR departments must become attune to changes in the business and talent landscapes and help organizations navigate the changes in pursuit of their goals.

Appropriate Documentation:
Another area that often gets overlooked in Dental practices is employment agreements and employee handbooks. Why are these documents so important?! The importance of having those in place are meant to protect not only the rights of you as an employer but also the rights (or powers) of your employees. These documents help ensure expectations and responsibilities of both the employee and employer are clearly defined.
A policy manual helps you communicate your company expectations to your employees by developing a clear a thorough manual. These will be your workplace guidelines that cover a wide range of workplace activities, from resolving conflicts to code of conduct to performance management, dress code, sick leave, vacation time and much more. Having these documents leaves no grey areas of what is expected of your employees.

Recruitment:
We understand that recruiting takes lots of time. You want to find the right candidate to fit your team. It may take time to find the right candidate, but it’s important to do it right. If you hire the wrong person, there can be negative effects to having a bad hire, such as having an adverse impact on your team dynamic, quality of customer service, lost time and wasted money.

Gone are the days where HR just meant hiring and firing. There is so much more involved when it comes to your staffing needs. It may seem a bit overwhelming with running your own successful practice and having to juggle all the HR duties as well, but it can be done!
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Stream Dental understands that you have a lot on your plate, as the owner of a growing Dental Practice, usually having little or no in-house Human Resource expertise! Our new services allow us to become your virtual HR department. Offering human capital solutions that provide the greatest impact on workplace productivity, employee engagement & retention and help you grow your business with the right people and processes.

We understand that hiring can be stressful! Going through all the resumes, interviews and reference checks can be time-consuming. You want to make sure that you are hiring the right fit for your practice and want someone to fit in with the team, so hiring the right person becomes quite a task. We often get asked: “Is it better to hire an experienced candidate or search for dental professionals with no experience at all”

Hiring for Dental Practices
When it comes to hiring candidates for different roles, dental practices need to take several things into consideration. To begin with, they must understand that searching for the right dental professionals can be extremely time-consuming and sometimes be a tedious process. All dental professionals are expected to handle several things at the same time. For instance, Dental Administrators need to manage patients, patient records, schedule appointments, manage inventory among other important tasks. You need to look at each role and understand what skills are required. You need to look for candidates that are best suited for various positions, because each position may require different skills, experience and education.

no-experience-necessaryExperience or No Experience
Before hiring a suitable candidate, dental practices need to have a clear and concise idea around the type of candidate they are looking to hire and the skillset that is needed. Depending on the role, a dental practice should focus on hiring a candidate with great customer service, knowledge, and positive attitude. Even if a candidate has many years of experience, they may fail to connect and interact with patients, which could result in some lost business. Thus, it is important for dental practices to hire dental professionals who are friendly in their approach and have a positive personality, whether they have 1-year experience or even 10 years. Dental Administrators and Assistants should pay heed to patients’ requirements and be personable. These are certain traits that cannot be taught at any dental school or college.

Dental practices must, therefore, assess a candidate’s overall skills, abilities, and experience to determine whether he/she is suitable for the job or not. While experienced dental professionals can certainly handle dental procedures and treatments appropriately, experience may not be everything. Thus, dental clinics should look to hire candidates based on the requirements of the job roles. While there’s no denying the fact that experience comes in handy during dental procedures and treatments, dental practices shouldn’t ignore the fact that a candidate can easily be trained if he/she has the willingness and desire to learn and grow.

There is no hard rule to say whether experience is better than no experience, but it all boils down to the specific role you are hiring for and the skills needed for the job. Some things can be trained and learned, other things cannot!
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Need help with your recruitment and HR needs, call Stream Dental Staff Solutions for a Free Consultation. We are here to help with your Staffing and HR needs.

When it comes to running a dental practice, dentists want to focus on treating their patients and not spending all their efforts on the stressful hiring process. It takes a lot of time to hire the right person. That’s exactly where a recruiter would be beneficial. With the right kind of recruiter by your side, finding the best, experienced and ideal dental candidates becomes a lot easier.

Having the Right People: When you hire a new employee, you spend a lot of time, resources and money to get them trained. What happens if after all that effort, they quit or it doesn’t work out! The practice encounters a number of problems in the absence of well trained, experienced and knowledgeable staff. Having a great dental team in place allows the dental office to operate smoothly and achieve their desired goals.

Achieve Success and Business Goals: A recruiter can find you the right people for your team who can further aid you in fulfilling your business goals and steer your dental practice on the path of success. Remember, when you choose the right set of people today, you’ll find it more convenient to fulfill your targets tomorrow. Candidates with positive mindset bring a lot of energy and enthusiasm with them, which eventually benefits the office in the long run. An experienced recruiter can assess candidates on your behalf and spot the right ones for your practice. With their years of practice and experience, they can determine which candidates are serious about their careers and future and which ones are simply looking for nothing more than job security.

Recruitment-Word-Cloud Save Time: Having a recruiter for your dental practice will aid you in saving a great deal of your time and energy, which you can further put towards expanding as well as strengthening your business. A recruiter will focus on getting you the right kind of dental professionals and assistants for your practice. This is a huge advantage for dentists & dental practices that do not have much time on hand to interview each and every candidate personally and then determine which ones are appropriate for their business. A recruiter will pre-screen and interview a number of candidates and review their resume to determine whether they are appropriate for the role or not. Recruiters dig into a candidate’s past experiences and current job profiles to analyze their true potential and capabilities.

Develop Long-term Partnership: Recruiters focus on building long-term relationships with their both candidates & clients. We help you find the best employees who fit your needs and your culture but that’s not all. We stick with you and your new hire during the critical onboarding process. We provide motivation so they can reach their full potential

Is your time valuable to you and your practice?! A lot goes into recruiting the right dental staff for various roles. Let a recruiter take over that task for you, so you can focus on your practice.
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Contact Stream Dental today for a Free Consultation and let us assess your requirements and needs so we can find the right candidate for you!