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Everything to Know About Outsourcing in the Dental Industry

As a general practitioner and dental practice owner, there is a lot of responsibility riding on your shoulders. You may be used to “doing it all,” but there comes a point when burnout starts to limit your growth and productivity. The path forward is in delegating and outsourcing the responsibilities that are better in the hands of others.

Why outsource?

A common business concept known as the “80/20” rule refers to the idea that people who are successful in business identify the 20 percent of what they do that matters the most, and they strive to devote most of their energy and focus to that. Keeping this in mind can help avoid burnout and pitfalls when growing your dental business – and outsourcing can be a crucial part of that.

Outsourcing is a critical tool for dental practice owners looking to expand their business. As a chief dentist of your own private practice, you can’t expect to recruit, train, and manage all the best talent for your practice on your own, while still having time left to handle your core clinical responsibilities at a high level. In this article, we’ll explore some of the most common forms of dental industry outsourcing and how they can help your business, as well as highlighting some emerging outsourcing opportunities that can benefit even experienced dental practice owners.

Outsourcing dentistry business support

The first type of outsourcing that is common for dental practice owners is what we call “business support roles”. These are tasks that are essential to running a business, especially a growing one, but often don’t make sense to handle via traditional recruiting and hiring. Remember the 80/20 rule. Sometimes hiring staff internally can be a major time and money sink and may not lead to the best results.

That’s why many dental practice owners outsource functions like marketing, compliance, billing, HR, and more. Depending on your practice’s strengths and weaknesses you may want to consider what additional resources you can leverage to grow. For example, if your practice is having trouble recruiting the right front office staff who can both sell a treatment plan and understand the complexities of billing, you may want to consider hiring for communication skills and bring in outside support and technology for complex billing.

It has become common for dental practice owners to outsource their marketing. Dental companies such as Microsite, Patient Pop, or SMC National have a wealth of experience and resources tailored to your needs. Your staff can still participate in the marketing efforts by creating content, optimizing the patient experience, soliciting reviews, and more, but what about placing ads, retargeting, blogging, social posting, SEO? Leave it to the pros.

Most practices miss about 30% of incoming calls. Outside call centers can be a powerful tool for dentists who don’t have enough coverage to handle all incoming calls. You likely aren’t even tracking the loss, and it should be high on your priority list. Many practice owners are completely unaware of how dramatically this could affect your patient flow. A good call center or tech system to catch missed calls will help make up the staffing deficiency.

The next outsourced team you’re likely already employing is for technology and IT needs. While many practices are switching completely over to cloud-based solutions, leveraging the right team that can be responsive is crucial for saving your practice from tech systems failures.

When it comes to HR services, such as managing your team and payroll there are companies like HR for Health that can help bring the strategic guidance you need at the right time. Independent dental practices don’t need to hire everyone in-house to manage each role required to operate. It’s a massive undertaking made easier by the availability of such resources.

Outsourcing dental specialty procedures

The traditional model for outsourcing complex procedures is to refer out to a specialist in your area. For practices in rural or underserved areas, it can be hard to find the right provider, leaving a large clinical burden on the GP. A better method is to bring a traveling specialist in-house and while there is the option to hire direct, it can be difficult to find the right provider and manage them, in addition to your existing responsibilities. Pair Dental can help you source the right provider and help with onboarding, contracting, and relationship management so that you can evolve into a multi-specialty practice easily and efficiently.

Which services should you outsource first?

The best method to determine which services you might want to outsource is to document which functions your team has competence in and enjoys doing. Evaluate the strengths and limitations of yourself and your team to determine which services to outsource. Then, take full advantage of all outsourcing tools in our industry, including Pair Dental’s hiring services. You don’t have to do it all yourself, and you don’t have to do it alone.

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Dr Alex Molayem, DDS

Dr Alex Molayem, DDS

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