Dental employee turnover is a big challenge when growing any dental practice. According to a Gallup Study, 51% of employees are actively looking for a new job or watching for openings. Translation: half of your team is currently contemplating leaving your practice for greener pastures. Why?
When we fail to understand the cost and cause of dental staff turnover, we will be fueling this vicious cycle! It can be challenging to evaluate dental employee turnover for the first (or second, or third) time, so we’ll take you through this process step by step.
Do you know how much dental staff turnover REALLY costs you?
One thing we know is employee turnover can come out of nowhere. It’s surprising when your lead assistant comes to you at the end of a busy day and hands you her two weeks’ notice. It feels like you just got blindsided.
It’s not only surprising; it’s costly. Now you need to start from scratch again to recruit, interview, hire, and train a new team member. It costs you much more than lost time and wasted money.
You and your team no doubt monitor spending on marketing, sundries, and clinic supplies, but you might not have a grasp on just how much employee turnover is costing you.
Consider what the following could cost: writing and posting a job posting, interviewing candidates, having candidates come in for a working/skills assessment interview, and training new hires, to name a few things.
Those costs can add up shockingly fast.
To gain a better understanding of the factors that contribute to employee turnover, let’s take a closer look at why it costs more to replace employees than retain your best employees.
Why is dental employee turnover so expensive?
Employee turnover is so expensive because there are direct exit costs when a dental staff member leaves. When they leave, you also incur additional costs to recruit and train new hires. Direct exit costs can include payouts for accrued vacation time and unused sick time, contributions to healthcare coverage, higher unemployment taxes, and severance pay. Side effects of turnover, such as decreased productivity, knowledge loss, and lowered morale are costly as well.
Let’s break it down . . .
Let’s say you are replacing a Dental Assistant with a $16 per hour wage. Your manager ($25/hour) begins the grueling and time-consuming task of filling this position as quickly as possible. She begins by posting a job ad ($100), screening and reviewing resumes, shortlisting candidates, and conducting phone interviews for 15 candidates ($375).
Total = $475.00
Your manager narrows down the candidate pool to five applicants, whom she asks to come in for an interview ($125).
Three out of the five are worth coming in for a full-day working interview ($384).
The next step is performing your due diligence and conducting reference checks ($25.00) and background checks ($75.00)
Total = $609.00
The total recruitment costs in this example add up to $1084.00 just to find and hire one person. But recruitment costs aren’t just limited to hard costs. When building a high-profit dental implant practice, finding and training amazing team members is even more important. The longer it takes to fill a position with the right person, the more it costs you in lost revenue.
STOP GENERATING LEADS, GET PATIENTS INSTEAD
Stop chasing unqualified leads and wasting your valuable chairtime. Learn how to fill your operatories with patients who are pre-qualified and serious about moving forward with your high-value treatment.
Decreased productivity and morale are costly.
On average, it can take an average of 51 days to fill open positions. During this time, those responsibilities from your former employee are absorbed by the rest of the team, adding additional work to their already lengthy to-do lists.
It begins to impact the quality of care your patients expect and deserve. Soon they begin to experience longer wait times. More mistakes are being made. Things are getting missed. You’re not able to follow up on new patient leads or have time to focus on developing effective treatment plans, or worse, have the energy, time, or attention to build great relationships and convert those high-value implant cases. You could be losing cases on a daily basis, and with dental implants, each case is a lot of money to be losing.
Next, job dissatisfaction can increase when dental employees are tasked with additional work and longer hours, causing them to question their own reasons for staying with your practice. Low team morale can result in decreased productivity, creating a cycle that can also lead to negative changes within your office culture.
In some cases, turnover can lead to more turnover. Imagine having another hole in your practice after spending over $1000, countless hours, and lost production, only to have to do it again.
You have training and onboarding costs.
Once you hire someone to fill this vacant position, that new employee needs to be oriented and trained. Employee onboarding, which includes orientation, training, and ramp-up time, can take several months.
This will take even more time away from you, your manager, team, patients, and business. Not to mention you are paying two salaries—that of your new hire and for their trainer. Every minute an employee spends training a new employee is a minute they’re not producing their own work or producing for the business!
During an employee’s first two weeks, it’ll cost $3,280 in wages plus at least $20,000 in lost production. With high-value implant cases, lost production costs can add up fast.
Calculate your turnover costs and plan your next steps!
The first step toward reducing your employee turnover costs is to correctly measure those costs.
The costs we described above totaled $4,364 to recruit, screen, hire, and onboard one new team member. That’s in addition to at least $20,000 in lost production. In other words, it costs a lot to recruit dental team members.
Now that’s a hard pill to swallow, isn’t it?
Though you may be shocked by how much it costs you, take a deep breath, and consider this a wake-up call. This is an opportunity to save your practice a significant amount of money each and every year by focusing on improving your attrition rate.
First, you’ll need to determine why your employees are leaving. We recommend conducting exit interviews, checking in with your remaining team for feedback, auditing your systems, and diagnosing the leading causes of turnover. Some common reasons for voluntary turnover include lack of communication, no recognition, micromanagement, poor leadership/management, and toxic office culture.
Once you know why employees are leaving, you can take measures to address the problem(s). By doing so, you’ll keep your people from walking out the door and improve the environment to let new hires flourish. This will lower employee turnover and allow you to reinvest your time and energy into growing your business!
If you want help selecting the right dental implant marketing company, book a FREE 15-minute strategy session with Driven Dental Implant Marketing. You can do that right here on drivendentalmarketing.com.
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