Dental Talent – How to Find the Right Dental Associateship for You – Our Guide

The sea of dentistry not only includes graduates of the medical art, but also the number of associateships and companies around looking to hire dentistry and oral health practitioners. Whether you are seeking your first dental job fresh off the exams or trying to take your career to the next level, associateships are probably on your mind. However, there are certain things to think about, such as the type of practice, what to look for, and what to avoid.

Take note that half of all associateships fail due to specific reasons. Perhaps the practice wasn’t ready or the dentists realized it wasn’t a good fit. If you put more thought into the search for one, you can definitely improve the chances of success. 

Here’s a brief guide on finding the right dental associateship for you:

Find A Practice That Shares Similar Goals To Yours

When jumping into the field of associateships, it pays to think long-term and visualize where you want to be ten years down the road. Think of whether or not you plan to buy part or all of the practice, and make sure that the owner is open to an agreement. Consider whether you want to learn the business side of dentistry, as this becomes more complicated when you start to learn the logistics and operations. Ask if the owner is willing to support efforts you are planning to make. These can be things like allowing you to sit in meetings, or if he or she will support your continuing education courses and transition some management responsibilities to you. 

Think about the side of managing staff, as this can be a complicated ordeal that is not for everyone. If so, look for opportunities to be able to take leadership roles and be part of the hiring process. Lastly, keep in mind that management means less time doing the dentistry aspect, so if you want to focus on the medical side, it wouldn’t be wise to take up tasks like management. 

Keep Your Options Open

Opportunities often pop up when least expected, so use a list of goals you have created as a guide. Early careers often have more flexibility than those later in, so avoid putting down roots that limit your choices. This means being open to relocating to a nearby area or even a whole new state or city. While you may be reluctant at first to do so, if the perfect opportunity appears and it matches all the things on your list of goals and aspirations, take it because it may not resurface again. Many people who end up moving because of work often find themselves happier in a new place even if it initially struck them negatively. 

Listen To Your Gut Feeling

The process for hunting for work is daunting for many and will vary from person to person. While some are hired without much effort, others may experience more steps to do so. Even if the job presented seems to be the perfect one, if you are on the fence about it because something doesn’t seem right, perhaps it would help to wait. Your gut feeling often tells you what’s best, so be sure to pay attention to it when making a major life decision.


Finding an associateship is a daunting task and can be a long and frustrating journey for some. However, the payoffs can be extremely rewarding if you stick around long enough and persevere through the tough times. Once you crossover to the management side, your perspective of the field will change considerably and make you more of a business owner rather than a dentist. Choose your path wisely and make sure that what you want to do is something steady and makes you happy in the end!

Dental Talent is the premium platform for dental recruitment in the UK. Find listings for hundreds of jobs available for dental graduates and those looking for an elevated career using our easy to use job listings function.