We continue to dive into highlights from DentalPost’s annual Salary Survey conducted from August to October 2023. Dental professionals from across the nation revealed their thoughts on hours worked, pay, their work environment, benefits, and plans for retirement. They also provided feedback on their job seeking intentions for the new year, and as a practice owner, you’ll want to hear this.
Job hunting is in the works…And your employees could be among them
This year’s report uncovers an alarming statistic: over 50% of dental employees are actively or passively looking at job openings going into 2024. While it’s not a certainty that you’ll lose team members, the possibility exists, and it’s overwhelming. Why the high percentage of seekers? According to the statistics, the top three reasons employees are leaving include better pay, career advancement, and a better work environment. Last week’s blog gave several tools for combating the exodus. Choosing even one of those tools could mean the difference between keeping your team intact, or having to post positions on a regular basis.
If finances are tight, and you can’t offer higher pay or more benefits, you might try a softer approach to retain talent. Career advancement opportunities and work environment were close seconds to better pay. And if you can offer at least one of the two, you’d slowly be chipping away at employee discontent.
Employees need to see a clear path for advancement and learning new skills. You don’t necessarily have to put a timeframe on completing these advancements, but it’s imperative they know you’re willing to invest in them being better at their job. Offering a budget for Continuing Education (CE) or encouraging them to attend industry conferences shows them you’re committed to their success.
Work advancement is a great perk for your team, but if even that’s a bit too much to take on right now, their work environment should be a focal point of maintaining, or attracting, a great team. This doesn’t require providing lavish lunches or hiring a massage therapist every week (although wouldn’t that be great?!) to keep them happy. Simple morning meetings to offer a plan for the day, support where they need it, and open conversation about how things are going, are effective ways to keep them engaged. And providing lunch once in a while, and even some stress relief, shows your team you care about not only their work, but their health and wellness.
An environment that encourages open communication, welcomes change based on employee feedback, and shows and gives mutual respect to one another, are very attractive assets any practice can manage. It might mean the difference between an employee staying, or becoming part of that statistic the Salary Survey reveals.
Where do I go from here?
It’s a good time to reflect on your practice over the last year. Did you lose anyone? Why? Was there anything you could have done to keep them? Did you hire anyone? What was it about your practice that attracted them? Play on your strengths, address your weaknesses, and be sure to get your team’s feedback on their current state of mind. While you can’t solve every issue with more money, you can make an earnest effort to help make their daily trip to the practice a joy.
Want some help figuring out where you can make improvements? Consider a Practice Discovery Call with one of our team members and reveal your business’s true potential.