Corporate Dentistry vs. Private Practice: Which One is Right for You?
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Like any business, a dental clinic needs sales to survive and thrive. It needs to find prospects and turn them into paying patients consistently. If a clinic can’t do this well enough, it could face financial trouble.
That’s where a dental treatment coordinator can help. Read on to find out how this critical role can help improve a clinic’s efficiency and profitability and what to look for when hiring for this position.
A dental treatment coordinator is responsible for helping patients accept their treatment plans. It’s a role akin to a salesman in a typical company.
Treatment coordinators play a supporting role, but it’s a crucial one. A good candidate can single-handedly improve the revenue and turnover rate of a clinic very quickly. As such, hiring for this role can help raise your clinic’s profitability.
In most clinics, dentists are responsible for educating and “selling” a procedure or treatment to the patient. This can lengthen consultation times, and clinic turnover rates suffer. A better alternative is to outsource these tasks to a treatment coordinator.
In smaller clinics, a treatment coordinator job is often combined with an existing role, such as an administrative assistant or office manager. However, the more a clinic expands, the more need for a dedicated dental treatment coordinator.
We’ll discuss more about the qualifications and duties of a dental treatment coordinator. But first, let’s look at why you need one in the first place.
Improving efficiency is the number one benefit of hiring a treatment coordinator. Dental offices can also take advantage of time and cost savings as well.
A dental coordinator can take some of the administrative and sales work off the shoulders of dentists and orthodontists so that they can focus on what they do best: providing excellent dental services. For example, they can educate prospective patients regarding treatments and answer their questions so the dentists don’t have to.
Treatment coordinators are also vital for improving a clinic’s revenue and profits. In short, they are the de facto salespeople of a dental clinic. This is crucial since most dentists and orthodontists can’t do sales – and they shouldn’t have to.
Dental treatment coordinators help improve sales by suggesting the best treatment options for patients. It’s not about pushing unneeded services; rather, it’s focused on finding the right dental solution.
Coordinators can also coordinate treatment on behalf of patients. They also routinely remind them of upcoming appointments. This also takes some work off clinic administrators, helping them focus on better tasks. Treatment coordinators also routinely assist patients in paying for their treatments or finding financing options. This speeds up and improves cash flow.
In other words, a dental coordinator supports every other role in the clinic. This helps everyone focus on their responsibilities which, in turn, dramatically improves the efficiency and revenue of the clinic.
If you’re interested in hiring a treatment coordinator, here’s what you should look for during the recruitment process.
The dental treatment coordinator job description focuses mainly on the patient experience. This person aims to help people get the right treatment as soon as possible.
The first part of the treatment coordinator dental job description is assisting in payments. They will help the patient find the most suitable payment option (including claiming insurance or securing third-party financing) and process any required paperwork.
The second part is in scheduling the actual treatment. This is often done by liaising with a scheduling coordinator or (in smaller clinics) directly with the dentist. Aside from assisting new patients, a dental coordinator also helps manage people in a multi-step treatment plan.
They are responsible for reminding patients of their scheduled treatment days and to follow up with those who’ve missed their appointments altogether.
Treatment coordinator dental jobs also involve some sales chops. Their goal is to convince a person to get much-needed dental treatment. Dental treatments can be expensive, which can deter people from making the investment. Treatment coordinators are tasked with showing patients the importance of getting treatments, as well as helping them figure out how to pay for services.
Knowledge about dental services is also a big part of the treatment coordinator job description. They run a patient through a procedure and answer any questions they might have. Any treatment coordinator should be deeply familiar with dental services, what the processes entail, recovery times, and more. Many coordinators learn this in-house during training after being hired.
Strictly speaking, there are no one-size-fits-all qualifications for a dental treatment coordinator.
However, a sales background is a huge advantage when hiring for this role. Remember that a treatment coordinator is more than an administrative role – this person should be able to help “sell the treatment” to prospective patients. This requires a high degree of sales skills, such as quickly answering objections or deftly highlighting the benefits of a treatment.
A dentistry background is desired but not required, since many new coordinators will learn the different treatment options via in-house training. However, familiarity with the dentist’s terms can help them absorb information much faster and explain dental services in more detail.
Whether the candidate has sales experience or not, strong communication skills is the most important qualification for the role. Any dental treatment coordinator must be comfortable talking with people, quick on their feet, and able to navigate objections with grace.
Not sure they’re qualified based on one interview? Candidates with experience in customer service are usually a good fit for this role. Customer service representatives are adept at handling complaints and tricky social situations, which is helpful in any sales or customer-facing role.
Being a “people-person” is a must-have trait for this job. Every day, coordinators must work with people and they shouldn’t just be comfortable doing so — they should enjoy talking with others. As such, look for someone who is personable, charismatic and positive.
Resilience and tenacity is also vital. Not every sales pitch will be successful, and the treatment coordinator should accept that. They should also work well under pressure and be able to meet deadlines.
You should also look for trainability. Coordinators need to learn plenty of medical topics – which they should be able to communicate clearly to patients. This requires fast learning and adaptability. Ask them interview questions related to how quickly they’re able to adapt to new situations, learn new processes, and more. This will give you insight into their ability to be trained in new topics.
According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual salary of a dental treatment coordinator in the US is around $43,199. Top earners in the field tend to have a salary of $60,500, while entry-level positions hover in the $27,500 range. However, make sure to look up average salaries in your location, as this can vary drastically across the country. Salaries should also be determined based on previous experience.
Dental treatment coordinators can eventually move on to more senior roles, such as dental office managers. You can base job performance on key statistics like the number of patients closed per day or the percentage of patients with incomplete treatments.
Cloud 9 offers all-in-one specialty dental practice management software that can make treatment coordination easier. It has all the tools your staff needs, including automated reminders, centralized patient records, multi-channel communication, and more.
Cloud 9 has everything your coordinators need in one platform, so they can focus on delivering a superior patient experience and bringing more revenue to your clinic. Contact Cloud 9 to learn more about our platform, or schedule a free demo today.