The Cost of Hiring a New Employee vs. Training an Existing Practice Team Member

The talent shortage in dentistry is the biggest challenge faced by dental practices today. In a recent poll of practice owners, 63% of respondents said they are unable to find enough qualified candidates to fill open positions, and 26% anticipate this to become a larger problem in the coming years.  In the face of this challenge, many employers are devoting even more resources to talent searches, assuming that finding the perfect candidate will deliver better ROI than developing the skills of existing employees.

Hiring new employees present its own challenges and may be more expensive than many practice owners realise.  It costs £10,000 on average above salary in payroll costs to hire a new Associate Dentist. is a fixed price advertising solution to reduce the time and cost of advertising to find new dentistry team members.  However, before you start looking to hire new employees, perhaps consider the advantages of developing the talent you already have –


Cost is one of the biggest drawbacks of hiring new talent. Research estimates that the cost of directly replacing an employee can run as high as 50% of their annual salary. In comparison, the average annual cost of training and developing an employee is just 10%. It turns out, training current employees is much more cost-efficient than hiring new ones. There will also be loss of income for losing an employee as they will walk away with vital practice systems and knowhow, patients care and practice philosophy. There is an intangible cost for this loss.


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Hiring new employees costs employers time. The time spent training a new employee is a fraction of the time lost during the overall hiring process. None of this extra time is lost by simply investing in developing current employee skill sets instead. There is also the loss of income to train a new team member in its culture, systems, patients journey and practice intelligence.




Business partners negotiating at a deskDeveloping your current team gives you more flexibility for delegating and encouraging employees to take on multiple roles and responsibilities. Training internally allows for more specialised talent to be deployed when needed.



Management Potential

Another advantage of investing in the skill set of your current employees is that it enables you to develop future leaders.  You can avoid the cost of hiring new talent and ensure that future managers will be a great culture fit by training them internally. This also benefits your current managers by giving them assistants to delegate tasks to, while it prepares your team for a smoother transition when existing managers move on, take time off, or retire.


Training Future Trainers

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As employees gain new skills, they also become potential trainers themselves. When one employee learns a new skill set, it becomes easier for them to assist others with on-the-job training. Investing in one current employee can have a multiplier effect that indirectly helps you train multiple staff without added cost.


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