Dental Office Manager Training (3 Keys to Success)

When it comes to dental office manager training, there are three core areas that will help you stand out. Now there are plenty of online courses that offer training, but which ones should you enroll in? How do you know which dental office manager courses are right for you? With over 20 years of consulting experience, here’s the areas we’ve identified as the most important skills to learn.

Dental Office Manager Training (3 Keys to Success)

  1. Business Systems
    • Bookkeeping
    • Payroll
    • Reporting
  2. Growth Systems
    • Front Office Training
    • Clinical Optimization
    • Back Office Systems
  3. Culture Systems
    • Leadership Development
    • Team Dynamics

1. Business systems

Business Systems are all about optimizing your day-to-day operations as a dental practice. Many times, dentists will choose to manage these systems themselves. Unfortunately, business education is often lacking in dental schooling. Understanding these systems will enable you to support the dentist and lift the administrative burden from their shoulders.


Are you comfortable monitoring the accounts receivable and reporting on the financial health of the practice? Can you provide budgeting support and financial projections? Dental bookkeeping is a critical operational component of a successful practice. 

Since this administrative task may fall within your job responsibilities, it’s important to have a firm understanding of your accounting process.


Effective payroll operations require practice administrators to understand employee details, federal laws, and local regulations. Office managers are expected to reduce the risk of the practice and prevent unexpected tax penalties and fines. 

Sometimes this is offloaded to the dental front office team, but you are ultimately accountable for payroll accuracy. This includes things such as: 

  • Collect copies of Timecards/Hour Summary Reports for Staff
  • Review overtime & employee hours and report anomalies
  • Create paychecks and implement direct deposit
  • Implement and track wage changes for employees/providers
  • Enter data as reported to include, but not limited to: Regular Staff Pay, Severance Pay, Vacation Pay, Paid Leave, Gifts or other bonuses
  • Enter deductions to include, but not limited to: Health Insurance Premiums, Retirement, Garnishments
  • Provide online pay stub access for employees


Dentists are very analytical people. They love to see data, charts and reports to support their decision making process. Tracking your practice KPIs will ensure you have a sustainable rate of improvement and growth. 

Dental professionals are often responsible for analyzing the practice’s financial performance and potential. By developing a skill set around data analytics, you will become an indispensable part of the team. It will also make sure to keep things in the office running smoothly.

2. Growth systems

Growth Systems are all about finding ways to generate more revenue and increase the patient flow. Although it’s normal for an office to plateau at points, it’s your job as an office manager to stay competitive. This requires attention to detail and dedication to long-term success.

Front office training

Making a good first impression is critical to building a strong patient base. Whether it’s a phone call or online interaction, we want to leave lasting positive impressions. Due to the digital era we live in, this can also include your marketing efforts. 

Make sure you have systems in place to improve retention, increase case acceptance, and ensure positive experiences.

Clinical optimization

Although the front office is a patient’s first interaction, most of their time will be spent with the dental hygienist and dental assistants. With 75% of adults experiencing anxiety about dentists, you’ll need to ensure consistent, positive clinical operations

When you focus on great experiences, you are rewarded with increased patient lifetime value. Patient satisfaction is the single most important factor that influences customer retention.

Back office systems

Dental insurance can be a difficult task to navigate when you’re first starting out. Insurance reimbursements and patient financing need strong structures and systems to ensure your practice gets paid for services. 

From initial treatment coordinators to recurring payments, these relationships can have a lasting impact. Establishing clear expectations and communication can help you avoid unnecessary conflicts in the future.

3. Culture systems

Building a cohesive culture can be difficult when managing different personalities, backgrounds, opinions and beliefs. But at the end of the day, a team that works well together will have more fun and greater productivity.

Leadership development

Training courses on leadership can easily be the foundation of your success. Leadership is inspiring team members to collective objectives and outcomes. It is creating, communicating, getting buy-in, and executing organizational vision.

Team dymanics

Conflict resolution, personality assessments, and other tools can help you understand how to become a unified team. Despite our differences, we can often find common ground with the practice vision and values. Learn ways to engage your team and establish clear expectations for communication and accountability.

Are you ready to take your practice to the next level?

Reach out today to see how you can start maximizing your dental practice potential


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