Dental Talent – 5 Ways Dental Recruitment Was Affected by COVID-19

Dentistry experienced many challenges in recruitment due to the coronavirus pandemic. This is especially true since dental care professionals work in close proximity to patients, which expose a high risk of contracting the virus for both the patient and dentists. As a result, many dental clinics worldwide were forced to pause their operations or completely shut down their business doors, leaving many professionals seeking dentistry jobs. Here are some ways dental recruitment was affected by the ongoing health crisis:

A Huge reduction of vacancies

Safety precautions were strictly enforced last year, which caused dentist contracts suddenly coming to an end and associate placements being cancelled or put on hold. Many dental patients also cancelled their dental appointments, putting some clinics out of business. Because of these uncertainties, more than half of dental practices recruiting at that time put their recruitment for dentists on hold that led to a huge reduction of vacancies during the following months.

The rise of online interviews

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Photo by Alex Green on

Nothing beats face-to-face meetings and interviews, but holding them in the middle of a pandemic poses health risks to both employers and candidates. Many job interviews were conducted through digital platforms, such as Zoom and Google Meet. This way, dental recruiters can comply with social distancing measures and ensure a safe dental recruitment process.

Dental practices also took advantage of the technology adapted to the new normal by offering virtual practice tours and making telephone calls instead of holding in-person meetings.

A surge of dentists looking for positions

There has been a surge of dentists looking for positions due to fewer vacancies being advertised and fewer opportunities available. Locum dentists wanted stability, while associate and foundation dentists looked for new career opportunities.

Some dental practices continued to recruit even during the pandemic. They experienced a larger response to job advertisements and were successful in filling vacancies, even those that had previously been difficult to fill, considering the required skill sets and account location.

The eventual increase in permanent vacancies and practices

The dental recruitment market experienced recovery last August as more dental practices recruited and offered permanent vacancies. Only a few practices searched for temporary cover, which made the locum recruitment market virtually non-existent.

On the other hand, the permanent recruitment market is still at a lower capacity compared to what it was before the pandemic. Still, there was an upturn in permanent vacancies, and new positions were picked up. 

Disrupted plans for dental recruitment for 2021

The new COVID-19 strain has disrupted the plans for recruitment this year, which led to significant changes in the upcoming recruitment plans. Increased use of the Multi-Specialty Recruitment Assessment (MSRA) is part of this year’s medical and dental recruitment and selection plans. The British Medical Association (BMA) raised concerns on the new proposals, but they are hopeful that recruitment could be delivered even amid COVID-19.


The coronavirus pandemic affected a wide variety of industries worldwide, with a significant impact on dental recruitment. While there was a slight improvement seen last year, the future looks grim as COVID-19 continues to hinder dental practices’ full operation. Fortunately, dental recruitment platforms like ours are available to help address the recruitment challenges faced by the dental sector.

Whether you want to look for dental professionals or seek job opportunities, use Dental Talent as your dental recruitment platform. We help dental practitioners in the UK look for jobs or hire top talents. Browse available jobs or post a job today!