with Kimberly Pieper, RDH
Temp or not to temp? That is the question.
Many dental hygienists are intimidated when it comes to the thought of temping in an unknown office. Why? Well, there are so many unknown factors. Is the office antiquated? How much time do I get for a scaling and root planning? What do I charge? Why, what, when, where, who? I hear them all! The fact is, yes! The office is sometimes antiquated…eek!
Don’t let the unknowns scare you into not accepting a temp position because of the many lingering questions in that hygiene brain of yours. We went through a pretty intense training program in hygiene school to learn the skills we are needed for. You know how to “clean teeth”. So knowing that very fact, you CAN temp anywhere.
So first things first…ASK! What type of software do you use? Are you digital or paperless? How much time do you give for each patient? Can I request a W2 versus a 1099? Will I get paid the same day?
The most common concern is what to charge offices for our services? The best way to find local wages is to ask area dental hygiene Facebook groups in your area. Dentalhygienist.org is a great website to check the state you live in for the average salary. Know your number in advance. There will be offices who will try to negotiate a lower fee. Confidently request your fee. You can also negotiate fees that you will see in job ads. Biteline has a great option for negotiating wages. If you are a temp replying to an ad with a low wage, reply by negotiating with your fee. Don’t just scroll past it, Bite it!
My advice is to know some important information to common questions in advance so you can confidently answer them when interviewing and before accepting a job opportunity. Whether it is via email, text or by phone, be prepared and most importantly SHOW UP!