Should a Dental Practice Have a Dedicated HR Rep?

Posted by on Jan 9, 2023 9:00:00 AM

With so many moving parts involved in keeping a dental practice running smoothly, managing Human Resources can be particularly challenging for dentists.

Even though corporate practices have dedicated human resource managers or representatives, HR reps for smaller dentist offices are still not commonplace. However, people management isn’t reserved for giant corporations. As long as you have employees, you need someone to manage and support that team for your dental practice to thrive.

The question is, does every dental practice need an HR manager whose only job is HR? To help you answer this question for your dental practice, here are the pros and cons for having your own HR representative:


Pros of Hiring an Internal HR Rep for Your Dental Practice: 


A primary purpose for having an HR rep is that they are responsible for making your dental practice compliant with state and federal laws pertaining to hiring and personnel. Since these laws change, it’s crucial to have a human resource manager who can help you remain in compliance. This also gives you more time to focus on your practice and your patients, and less time trying to keep up with the shifting compliance landscape. 


Whether you are interviewing a candidate or administering payroll, the function of HR is to ensure that your business adheres to the law.

HR representatives are responsible for keeping all paperwork and notes organized not only when it comes to mandatory documentation, but also with regard to important interactions with employees, such as hiring, firing and reviews. The lack of such documentation could cost you thousands of dollars in legal fees if an issue were to arise.


HR representatives are looking out for the best interests of the dental practice while being able to evaluate an individual from a “good fit” standpoint. They can utilize a number of different aspects to ensure a candidate is an overall good fit for the practice, as opposed to a standpoint that exclusively examines hard skills.


There may be times where employees do not feel comfortable vocalizing their concerns with their direct supervisor. In some cases, they may choose not to share their thoughts with your practice's leadership at all, which could lead to overall negativity in the workplace. Instead, by providing an HR rep’s expertise to your team, your employees have a dedicated, trusted channel of communication. Having this extra ear can do wonders to improve the general morale of your team, the overall work environment and provide actionable insight into ways you can make your practice run more smoothly.


Cons of Hiring an Internal HR Rep for Your Dental Practice:

Adding To Non-Dental Payroll

If your team is not rapidly growing, or you don’t have a persistent need for internal documentation and intervention, it may feel like an HR rep is an added overhead cost with an intangible Return on Investment.

Purchasing Additional Tech

An in-house HR rep will require his or her own office, technology, and potentially, third-party software to help make the practice compliant and organized. These purchases and upgrades can add up quickly, while the benefits of having this additional tech for HR may not materialize until later. 


HR Reps and Your Dental Practice

For most practices, the pros outweigh the cons for adding a dedicated HR representative to the team. The question, however, that many then face, is whether or not to have an in-house HR manager or an out-of-house rep from an HR services organization.

On one hand, in-house services allow you daily direct contact with your HR manager, on the other hand, there may not be enough tasks and work to warrant this presence.

Outsourced human resource services allow you the flexibility to cover certain areas of your practice’s HR needs, such as documentation. However, they may be less effective in handling personnel issues when they arise, due to the remote nature of the services. 

In-house or out-sourced, hiring an HR rep can give your dental practice an advantage when it comes to having a fluidly managed business. For an in-depth discussion on human resources management, download our Guide for Managing People in Your Dental Practice. 

About Treloar & Heisel 

Treloar & Heisel offers dental and medical professionals a comprehensive suite of financial products and services ranging from business and personal insurance to wealth management. We are proud to assist thousands of clients from residency to practice and through retirement. Our experienced teams deliver custom-tailored advice through an active local presence, while our strong national network ensures that clients experience the same high level of service throughout the country.

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