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How Do You Know You’re Ready for a New Associate ?

By Choice Dental Solutions, May 16 2018 01:00PM

A new associate can be a great way to elevate your dental practice to the next level. Associate dentists can help with everything from growing the practice to allowing for the current dentist to ease their way into retirement. How can you tell whether or not you’re ready to expand your practice and take on a new associate?

You’re Busy

The biggest reason to add another dentist to your practice is that your practice is simply too busy to handle the patient load with your current number of employees. As a rule of thumb, most practices are ready to expand with an associate when the active patient number is higher than 2,000 in a general practice, 4,000 in a pediatric practice and 250 cases in an ortho practice. Your schedule should also consistently be booked 4-6 weeks in advance, including next appointments only, not pre-booked treatment plans. Beforehand, you should thoroughly research the return on investment and project how adding an associate will change finances for the better (or for the worse!).

You Know What You Want

Do you need an associate to perform procedures that you always refer out of your practice? Do you need an associate who is skilled in an area where you are weaker? Finding ways to harness business you are currently losing is always a good idea, and a great reason to add an associate. Think about how many cases you refer out every year and examine what they are. If you refer out hundreds of endo cases, it might be time to hire an endodontic specialist to help out.

Know Your Options

Finally, you should familiarize yourself with your hiring options. You can take on an associate as an employee, which is best if you plan to stay with the practice for at least 10-15 more years. This grows your practice without needing a longer-term commitment. Or, you could have a new associate that is a buy-in partner. This is ideal if you are seeking a gradual buy-out of your dental practice. Your last option would be to hire an associate as an independent contractor.

Why You Shouldn’t Hire an Associate

If you find yourself hiring a new associate for any of the issues below, you should rethink your decision:

• Your competitors are adding associates

• You want to have an extra person to cover for travel and vacations

• You want another peer on the same level as you

Take on a New Associate or a New Practice with Choice Dental Solutions

Are you looking to expand your practice? Give Choice Dental Solutions a call at (410)773-4460.

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