Staff Turnover And Onboarding New Hires

Episode 058

Staff turnover is inevitable and can be distracting to your staff. It can also bring extra stress to you as a business owner. This week, on episode 58 of the Business of Dentistry, we discuss our current staff turnover and my ideas about an on boarding process for new hires.

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Recently my office manager, Paul, told me that he was resigning because he had been presented with a great opportunity. While I was excited for him, I was sad for myself. He’s been on our staff for five years and we’ve become friends in that time. We have lunch together every week and talk about business, politics, history, everything under the sun!

But when he shared with me his new opportunity, I understood why he was saying yes to it. His background is in executive roles within hospital administrations. In fact, he set up a hospital in Shanghai, China; he still visits there once or twice a year and has a network there too.

Last year he visited for a few weeks, and during that time he ran into his friends who live there. One of those friends is a doctor Paul has previously worked with. That doctor has been trying to recruit Paul to  be the CEO of the hospital the doctor works for. On his visit, the doctor gave Paul a tour and made him an offer on the spot for the CEO role. Paul turned him down and said I have to talk to my family back home; when Paul got back he was given an even better offer, one he could not turn down.

With his departure on the horizon, I started to think about staff turnover and the onboarding process. I’ve been thinking about what we do in my practice and where we can improve, both topics I wanted to share with you on today’s show.

When a staff member leaves, we don’t have an onboarding process as of now. When Paul gave me his resignation, I decided to let the staff know what was going on and that we would be filling his role. Ideally we would find his replacement before he leaves so we could have a transition period so the new person would work with Paul and get familiar with the role.

I wanted to bring up these topics to share what I do, but also to find out what you do when a staff member leaves. How do you handle it? And how do you onboard your incoming employees?

I don’t currently have an onboarding process, we do it on the fly. With Paul’s departure I’m really focused on changing that and getting a system in place.

If you do have a way you train your new employees, how do you do it? Do you have an office policy manual? Do you have certain ways you train them on your management software? Do you train them on answering the phones, the mission/philosophy/culture of your office?

I now see that I have a really big hole in this part of my practice and I need to fix it. A streamlined training process is something that needs to be done for everyone: front desk, scheduler, insurance billing clerk, office manager, etc.

Even though I don’t have a process in place, I’ve been thinking the new process would start with a basic introduction to all of the staff. Next I would sit down with the employee one on one and explain what my philosophy is and what my expectations are. I think it’s important we do ourselves this as practice owners, and not delegate this part of the training to anyone else.

I would also go over their job description with them as well. Then I would be sure they are trained on our management software, this we delegate to our software company as they have the resources and expertise to do this online.

On today’s show, I also explain why I see these transitions as opportunities to dive into what needs to be improved, as well as what it was like to be thrown to the proverbial wolves as a training experience, and why I won’t do that to my staff! You can hear all of that plus questions to ask your staff while setting up your onboarding process on episode 58 of the Business of Dentistry!

Tweetable: “I see transitions as opportunities.”

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