What Are the Steps to Land the Perfect Orthodontic Career Opportunity?

Step to Find the Perfect Orthodontic Career Opportunity or Orthodontic JobBy: Shannon Patterson, CPR, CMSR
Kolbe Certified™ Consultant
Director of Practice Opportunities

I am very fortunate to have the opportunity to speak with hundreds of orthodontic residents every year who are looking for the right opportunity after their graduation. One of my first questions is, “Why did you want to become an Orthodontist?” I hear various answers every day as a recruiter but many times I hear this one, “Because I had an amazing experience with my Orthodontist.” So, you’re telling me that your experience with your childhood orthodontist was so awesome that it inspired you to travel this long, difficult academic path? Wow, it gets me right in the heart every time. And it’s that connection that as future practitioners you all want and desire to have with future patients whether it is in a private practice, group practice, or corporate model.

My next question is usually, “Where do you want to land and where do you see yourself in five years?” I don’t usually hear as much excitement, and often I hear confusion and concern. The answer to this question often sounds something like this: “I don’t really know I just know I want a good job to start paying off my debt.” I don’t blame you for not knowing the answer. After all, how can you know if you’ll be happy in your future job five years from now?

Well, lucky for you, I absolutely love what I do, and when you love what you do you have a passion for helping others. Most of you have identified your passion, now you are looking for a place to combine your passion and a career. Every day, I counsel candidates on what factors they should consider when seeking an opportunity. Through trial and error and knowledge gained from many candidates through the years, I have found these steps to be helpful as you narrow down your job search.

1) Know Who You Are!
We all want to get paid for doing what we love, but be sure to understand who you are and the must-haves before deciding on a job opportunity. What are your beliefs and values? Does this opportunity and community align with them and will you be able to fit into the practice and community cultures? Identify your practice values, your personal values, your interests, your “must-haves” in a community, your passions, and last- your financial needs. Yes, I said consider money last because, believe it or not, most people do not leave their current job due to money but often due to “it’s just not a good fit for me.”

2) Identify the Right Practice.
As residents, you might often hear “beggars can’t be choosers,” and with the debt load most residents carry, who can blame them? However, be sure to do your homework on a potential employer, as this person will be tied to your career forever. Be sure to spend a day with a potential practice or employer and witness the practice culture, sit in on new patient exams, watch how the reception area greets patients and watch the clinical team working with patients. I can assure you that all of these, and I mean every single one, will have a huge impact on your success. If a potential employer has an issue with you spending a day in the office, this could be considered a red flag, especially if you are being paid on a production incentive.

3) Find a Good Mentor.
First, do not ask a stranger or someone who does not know you well! A great mentor should be someone who inspires you and who already knows you. This person has seen your potential and hard work, they know how you think, how you communicate, how you tackle tasks and how you contribute to those around you. It should be someone who trusts you and believes in you, but, most importantly, it should be someone who is not afraid to give you input and feedback! Identify and join social media groups and blogs with other young orthodontists to hear their perspectives and voices as a resource in your career; Ortho 101 is a great one.

4) Practice Perseverance.
What is the definition of perseverance? Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, and endurance. There is an old saying, “do what you love and you’ll never work another a day in your life.” Is that really true? Probably not, but if you do what you love, it will never feel like a job. Success takes hard work, commitment, and persistence. All of you are talented and skilled clinicians, and with connections and a little luck you might find a good opportunity, but persistence will ultimately be what makes you successful in your career and is what will set you apart from others. Identify your vision and know that it will take stamina and endurance to get there!

A job search requires commitment and dedication. Making a career plan requires you to outline clear expectations and objectives. It means going back to the basics, discovering your likes/dislikes, values and beliefs and taking them all into account for a job opportunity. Even if you don’t land your dream job and you have a short-term opportunity, stay committed to your long-term career goals.

It will take time and effort but in the end, it will be worth it. And for those of you who are looking for that new key phrase “work-life balance,” I believe it is important to understand that your job will ultimately take up most of your time; it financially supports your dreams and it is a core part of your identity. If you simply live your life, love what you do and do your very best at it, ultimately you will achieve great success!

Orthodontic Practice For Sale: Knox County, Tennessee

Knox_County_TN_Orthodontic_Practice_For_SaleA private orthodontic practice is for sale in the beautiful state of Tennessee.

The practice is located in Knox County, a broad valley between the Cumberland Mountains and the Great Smoky Mountains. The county is home to the University of Tennessee offering residents an array of educational and cultural opportunities. Knox County is rated one of the best places to live in Tennessee with affordable housing, highly rated public schools, and close proximity to the Great Smoky Mountains. Knox County’s population is fairly young due to the number of college students and young families. A recent study showed almost one-quarter of residents are younger than 20.

Tennessee is a business-friendly state. Corporations, as well as citizens, benefit from the Tennessee tax structure. It is profitable to do business in Tennessee and cost-effective for its residents. Tennessee is one of the few remaining states with no personal income tax. If you are looking to plant roots in a town offering residents a high quality of life, the opportunity to purchase this well-established practice is for you. The ideal candidate is available by Summer 2020 and eligible for Tennessee licensure.

To learn more about this opportunity, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.

Orthodontic Associate Opportunity: Prince William County, Virginia

Orthodontic_Associate_Needed_Prince_William_County_VirginiaA busy private orthodontic practice located in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. is seeking a full-time associate to join their practice.

The suburb is located in Prince William County and is one of the best places to live in Virginia. Prince William County is the second-largest county in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with a strong, diverse economic base, where individuals and families choose to live, work and play and businesses choose to locate. The community offers residents an urban-suburban mix feel and most residents own their homes. The residents enjoy over 24,000 acres of parkland with 70 county parks, 33 miles of maintained trails, and two state parks. Prince William County high schools are also among the top 10% in the nation.

To learn more about this opportunity, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.

Orthodontic Associate Opportunity: Raleigh, North Carolina

Raleigh_North_Carolina_Orthodontic_Associate_OpportunityRaleigh, North Carolina is the place to be and we have a great opportunity for an orthodontic associate! This opportunity has an exceptional compensation package for an associate orthodontist including;

  • $30,000 sign-on bonus
  • Guaranteed Income for new graduates
  • Potential to make  $255K + in Year 1 and $300K+ in Year 2 and beyond
  • Associate with potential for equity track available
  • Mentorship from Senior Providers & Outside Consultants
  • Health Insurance & Benefits, 401(k)
  • Advanced Technology in both Offices
  • Experienced Clinical Team with excellent TC’s
  • $5,000 CE Course Allowances
  • Relocation will be fully reimbursed
  • 4 weeks of vacation + 6 paid holidays

The streets in the heart of the city are lined with many oak trees making Raleigh known as the “City of Oaks” which helps further the family-friendly atmosphere and welcoming community. The state capitol is also known for its universities, including North Carolina State University and is part of the Research Triangle Park. This region is luring new residents every day with strong job growth and high quality of life. Many of the people who call this metro area home are young, friendly, diverse, and educated. U.S. News ranked Raleigh #10 in Best Places to Live and Money Magazine describes Raleigh as the ‘Best Big City in the Southeast’.

To learn more about this opportunity, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.

Orthodontic Practice For Sale: Los Angeles County, California

Bentson_Copple_Orthodontic Practice For Sale - Los Angeles County, CaliforniaA private boutique orthodontic practice located in Los Angeles County, California is for sale.

The community is a suburb of both Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties. The community is ranked one of the best places to live in California known for its elegance as well as its laid-back lifestyle. The area is home to many young professionals and the majority of residents are homeowners. The area offers residents tree-lined streets filled with historic homes, an endless number of hiking and biking trails, community parks and gardens, and a public school system that ranked one of the highest in the state.

If you are looking to purchase a practice in laid-back Southern California this practice is for you!  The ideal candidate is available by spring 2020 and eligible for California Licensure (WREB). To learn more about this practice opportunity, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.

What Metrics Should You Focus on During Your Initial Review of a Practice Opportunity?

What metrics should you focus on during your initial review of a practice opportunity?By: Anthony Copple, JD
Transition Specialist

Reviewing an opportunity to purchase a practice outright or to buy into a practice as a partner can be an overwhelming task. You may have been presented with a mountain of data about the subject practice: tax returns, profit and loss statements, and operational reports. What does it all mean? What should you focus on? What data is important in determining a fair value for the practice?

Well…the long answer is that all of the data and information surrounding a practice is important in determining its value. After all, an orthodontic practice is a unique asset and no two are exactly alike. However, there are a few things you can focus on that will provide a reasonable snapshot of any practice. Three of the most consequential are explained further below:

Practice Overhead Rate
The overhead rate of a practice is one of the most important factors in determining a practice’s value and the benefits that practice will provide to a buyer. After all, the overhead rate ultimately determines the amount of cash the owner can reap from the business. Generally, the lower the overhead rate, the more valuable the practice. So, a practice at 55% overhead will be more valuable than a practice at 65% overhead, all else being equal. The average practice overhead rate for an orthodontic practice is 58% of collections. If operating expenses are below this level, it can drive the price of a practice up while expenses above this threshold will generally have the opposite effect.

Practice Production
Production acts as a bellwether for practice collections; it tells us where we’re headed. If the practice produces $1,500,000 this year, we can expect that the practice will collect something close to $1,500,000 next year. Knowing this, we can use practice production, practice collections and their relationship to one another to identify trends within the practice. If practice collections have grown over the past two years and production in each particular year exceeds our collections in the same year, we can be fairly confident that the practice will see continued collections growth in the following year. This can be vital to practice value because a growing practice has more potential, and less risk, than a declining practice.

Practice Contracts Receivable
The contracts receivable balance is the total amount remaining to be billed to the active patients of a practice. This can be distinguished from accounts receivable because accounts receivable have already been billed to the patient and are currently due. The contracts receivable balance gives us an indication of the stability of the expected future cash flow of the practice and an idea of the number of active patients that are paid-in-full.  We know that we can expect cash flow from the contracts receivable balance as we treat current patients of the practice regardless of the number of new starts we have. On average, a practice’s contracts receivable balance is approximately 50% of prior year production. Below that level, and the practice likely has more paid-in-full patients than the average orthodontic practice. This would add risk for a buyer expected to continue to treat those paid-in-full patients after the closing without collecting patient fees. This additional risk tends to drive the practice price down. Of course, if the contracts receivable balance is above this threshold, it can add value to the practice.

As I said above, there are dozens of factors that go into determining the value of a practice. No one point of data will tell you everything you need to know about a practice. However, analysis of the three metrics above should give you a pretty solid idea of the type of practice you are looking at and whether it is worth pursuing further.

What Should Be Accomplished During an On-Site Visit Interview?

What should you accomplish on a site visit interview?By: Shannon Patterson, CPR, CMSR
Partner, Kolbe Certified™ Consultant

When a potential employer and/or partner is interested in you, chances are you will be invited to visit the practice. Whether it is your first opportunity post-residency or you’re moving on from a previous opportunity you need to make the most out of the site visit. You should know a few basics and questions to ask about the practice and community to ensure you find the right opportunity in the right place.

When, What, and Who?
As you share with co-residents you will quickly realize that no two site visits are the same. It will be up to you to do some homework before the visit to ensure you get the most out of it. Understanding the three basic W’s – the when, what, and who will help you prepare for the visit.

When Does a Visit Take Place?
Typically you are invited to visit a practice after initial conversations with a potential employer and confirming you both are interested in moving forward. At this point, you should understand the position and have a genuine interest in the practice and the community in which it is located. I have had candidates visit practices as early as their first year of residency if the practice meets their goal parameters and is located in their geographical area of interest. Most potential employers, especially those offering a path to equity, are looking for a person who can adapt to their practice culture and they are definitely willing to wait on the right candidate.

What Does the Visit Include?
A site visit is designed to showcase a practice and the community and what it has to offer a candidate in a very short amount of time. We highly recommend an overnight stay to maximize the visit. Most of the time the visit is tailored to each candidate but has a standard format which usually includes additional interviewing with the doctor, meeting with the team, clinical shadowing, touring the community, dinner with spouses and possibly a social event in the community. We also recommend meeting with a local realtor if you feel strongly that you will accept the position.

Who Should Join You?
Although it is you the practice is interviewing if you are married your spouse will likely have a very important role during the visit. Orthodontic practices typically are very involved in the communities they serve and want to ensure that you and your family will feel comfortable and welcomed. Spouses are often the number one reason candidates reject a job offer especially if the spouse did not attend the site visit. One of the most important parts of the site visit is to envision yourself and your family living in the community where the practice is located. The second part of the “who” question I often hear is “who” pays for the site visit? A potential employer should pay for you to visit the practice. That usually includes airfare, hotel, and a rental car. It is customary that the potential employer reimburse you for travel expenses after the site visit is complete but some employers offer to make travel arrangements for you; either is fine just be sure to get a plan in writing so you understand what will be covered.

Remember your goal on a site visit is to gather as much information as possible about the clinical position, the practice culture, and its alignment with your own values, and the surrounding area and whether it will meet your social needs. At the end of a site visit, you should confirm that the opportunity has the right culture, the right team, and is located in the right place for you to start a successful orthodontic career.

Orthodontic Job Opportunity: Seattle, Washington

Seattle.BlogA unique new orthodontic model and practice group is expanding nationwide. This fast-growing group is seeking a motivated, entrepreneurial associate to join their team and manage a practice in downtown Seattle, Washington. This practice is passionate about making orthodontic care exceptional and believes in putting the orthodontist at the center of its growth strategy.

Seattle is Washington State’s largest city and is home to a large tech industry, with Microsoft and Amazon headquartered in its metropolitan area. The practice is located near the Seattle Center which has become a premier destination for arts, entertainment, and leisure activities. One of Seattle’s greatest assets is that it’s a large city that doesn’t require you to leave to find outdoor activity offering a wonderful lifestyle for both families and young professional adults!

If you are looking for a new career with a competitive income package this opportunity is ideal for you. To learn more about this practice opportunity, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.

Orthodontic Job Opportunity: Chicago, Illinois

Copy of Blog TemplateA unique new orthodontic model and practice group is expanding nationwide. This fast-growing group is seeking a motivated, entrepreneurial associate to join their team and manage a practice in Chicago, Illinois. This practice is passionate about making orthodontic care exceptional and believes in putting the orthodontist at the center of its growth strategy.

Chicago is recognized all across the United States as a very passionate sports town but that is not all they have to offer. Chicago today embodies the values of America’s heartland – integrity, hard work, and community. As a multicultural city that thrives on the harmony and diversity of its 77 distinct neighborhoods, they have affordable housing in attractive and economically sound communities.

If you are looking for a new career with a competitive income package this opportunity is ideal for you. To learn more about this practice opportunity, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.

Orthodontic Job Opportunity: Western South Dakota

South Dakota_BlogA private orthodontic practice in western South Dakota with multiple locations is looking for a motivated associate to join their team!

Located in a broad valley on the northern edge of the Black Hills, this community thrives as an outdoor recreational paradise along with a center for art and culture. Some of the best hiking trails are in the area, as well as majestic waterfalls and bubbling springs creating breathtaking scenery. Leisurely day trips to five National Parks and Monuments are within a two hour drive. The fast-growing, friendly community is home of one of the oldest educational institutions in the state making it an active college town with many young professionals residing there. This community was voted the #1 environment for entrepreneurs.

This opportunity offers a very competitive compensation package including a relocation bonus. If you are looking for an opportunity in a place that has a high quality of life, please forward your CV and letter of interest to shannon@bentsoncopple.com.

Click here to view additional practice opportunities available from Bentson Copple & Associates.