dental onboarding

Welcoming a new associate dentist to your practice is not just about filling a position; it’s about setting the stage for their success and long-term commitment. The onboarding process plays a pivotal role in this journey, and it goes far beyond simply introducing them to their new workspace. Here, we explore the critical elements of a thoughtful and practical onboarding process that ensures a positive candidate experience and paves the way for a successful partnership.

Prioritize the Candidate Experience

From the moment you decide to bring a new associate on board, their experience matters. Start by creating a seamless and welcoming transition:

Clear Communication

Keep candidates informed throughout the hiring process. Timely responses and transparency build trust.

Smooth Interview Process

Ensure interviews are well-organized and respectful of the candidate’s time. Provide insights into your practice culture and expectations.


Offer constructive feedback Even if you don’t choose a candidate. This demonstrates your commitment to their professional growth.

Learn more about The Power of Passive Recruiting and Why You Should be Doing It

Designate an Associate Advocate

Consider appointing an Associate Advocate or mentor within your practice. This advocate becomes a valuable resource for the new associate, offering guidance, answering questions, and assisting with their transition. Beyond professional support, this advocate can help with personal matters like finding suitable housing or local amenities.

Personal Touch: Welcome Gift

Before their first day, send a warm welcome message and a thoughtful gift basket or handwritten card. This gesture makes them feel valued and sets a positive tone for their entry into your practice.

Regular Check-Ins

The first few months of a new associate’s tenure are crucial for their integration and overall satisfaction. Implement 30/60/90-day check-ins to gauge their progress and address concerns. These milestones provide opportunities for open dialogue and adjustment as needed.

The truth is that recruiting is not just about the money; it’s a comprehensive endeavor that encompasses numerous aspects contributing to an organization’s success. Learn more here.

Additional Considerations


Provide a comprehensive orientation that covers practice policies, procedures, and technology. Introduce them to the entire team and emphasize your practice’s mission and values.

Clinical Integration

Ensure the new associate is familiar with your clinical processes and equipment. Offer training sessions as needed to bring them up to speed.

Patient Care Approach

Share insights on your patient care philosophy. Encourage the new associate to observe your practice’s unique approach to building patient relationships.

Feedback Loop

Create a feedback mechanism where new associates can share their observations and suggestions about improving processes or patient care.

Professional Development

Discuss opportunities for professional growth within your practice. Encourage ongoing education and provide support for CE courses.

A thoughtful and strategic onboarding process benefits your new associate and contributes to the overall success and harmony of your dental practice. It sets the stage for a lasting partnership and ensures your new associate feels welcomed, valued, and motivated to contribute their best to your team.

About the Author Brittney McDowell

I have worked in a variety of roles within marketing, recruitment, and communications over the last 15 years. Supporting organizations with their recruitment and branding strategy is truly my passion. There is nothing more rewarding than supporting those who prioritize and deeply value their teams and employer brand.

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