Searching for a new job is a necessary task that requires targeted effort. Sometimes the search can seem more taxing than the job itself. Looking for and applying to dental jobs has its own range of questions to consider before making the plunge. Whether it’s dentist jobs, dental hygienist jobs, or dental assistant jobs, from the front office to the clinical area, while the jobs are all different, they carry similar considerations when looking for the right employment.
- Location Location is one of the most important decisions you’ll make in your career journey. The median annual salary of dentist jobs as of 2017 was reported to be $158,120, but this number fluctuates, depending on location. Plus, it really boils down to where you want to live or how far you’re willing to travel to work. Do you want a major city? A suburb? Something a little more rural? Perhaps a temporary travel job? You know your own qualifications, but begin with thinking about where you want to live and how close you want to be to your job.
- General Dentistry or a Dental Specialty The where and the what can be interchangeably considered, depending on what matters more to you. If a certain type of dental practice matters to you more than where it’s located, start your decision-making process there. Are you looking for general dentistry? Pediatric dentistry? Surgery? Periodontics? Treatment coordinator positions? Orthodontics? If you have training and a certificate in a dental specialty, that will naturally play a role in your search and your decision for dental jobs.
- Practice Size and Professional Environment Generally, practice size can be attached to location and specialty, but sometimes it doesn’t matter. Before choosing a practice to join, visit the practice. Dental jobs come in practices ranging from massive surgical centers to one-chair family practices. The difference in size, patient list, services offered, and professional growth can change drastically between practices. It’s always prudent to visit, talk with the staff, and try to gain a feel for the professional atmosphere before signing any contract.
- Don’t Decline the Working Interview You’ve all heard about the Dental Practice asking the candidate for a working interview, but what if they offer you the position and don’t ask for one? My recommendation is that you ask for one. This allows you to more closely observe the other employees during their work day as well as the practice owner. It’s just as important for you to be comfortable with the dental practice as it is for them to be comfortable with you.
At the end of the day, it’s your career and your future. It sounds a little intense, but you love what you do, so take care in choosing your future in your field. However, you choose to select dental jobs going forward, this advice — in any order — will help illuminate a path to a career that’s bound to make you smile.
The future depends on what you do today.
Dr. Deborah Marynak is the owner of DentalStaffing.org, a dentist with over 30 years experience, and is committed to helping Dental Professionals find the right fit for both employees and employers. She also works with Dental Offices to help them streamline their clinical systems and teach Dental Teams how to effectively document to avoid risk.