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How to Build your Personal Brand

Tips for Finding a Job

We asked dental professionals to weigh in with their experience to help you find the perfect job!

When should a dental student begin looking for a job?

Dentist 18 years’ experience: I’d say as soon as possible. While you’re a student, you can’t work as a dental assistant or as an office assistant at a practice. You can create connections and possibly work there after graduation.

Dentist 5 years’ experience: If you plan on going straight into practice, I would recommend looking for a job in the last 2-3 months of school. There are a lot of great resources through websites such as Indeed and that will help you see what opportunities are available. I also recommend becoming involved with your local dental society to network and meet other professionals in your area.

What do recent graduates tend to miss out on when looking for their first job?

Dentist 18 years’ experience: Networking! Never underestimate the power of a personal phone call or attending local events.

Dentist 5 years’ experience: I think there are many important aspects to a first job: Mentorship: When you leave dental school you still have a lot to learn. It’s important to have a more experienced dentist either in the office or available on the phone for when you have questions. Growth: Try to find an office that wants to invest in YOU! Patient Load: Understand how patients will be assigned to you and what procedures you will be compensated for by the office. It is also important if you are assigned new patients to understand how the office markets their practice for new patients. Income: When you have a large student debt to repay, it’s important to have a stable income. Know how you will be compensated for your work.

What aspects do you look for in an ideal candidate?

Dentist 18 years’ experience: Practical experience is very important, especially at the beginning of your career. Classes offered at school can be very clinical and it is beneficial to pursue additional education on communication skills whenever possible.

What can a resident do to increase his/her chances of being hired?

Dentist 18 years’ experience: Go above and beyond! Dedicate half your time to working at the office and the other half to a long-term training program. Extra training is an excellent way to refine what you can’t learn in dental school. It also helps to take initiative and understand the different areas of practice management: things like scripting, case acceptance, and collections.

Where can recent graduates go to find out about job openings?

Dentist 18 years’ experience: Besides the networking approach I mentioned earlier, other ways to find job openings include regional dental councils and national dental journals. Also, dental and hygiene associations and schools make excellent resources for anyone looking for work in the dental industry.

Dentist 5 years’ experience: Network with your local dental societies. Once people know you are looking, they can connect you with dentists looking to hire. I also would check out websites such as and