Dental Temp like a Pro!

by | Jun 6, 2022 | Dental Job, Dental Professionals, Temporary Hire | 0 comments

As we roll into summer, you might find yourself with a few weeks off from your practice but you still want to work.  Or you really want to enjoy your summer, so you want to temp all summer long and only work on the days you want to work.  Whatever the case may be, this post will help you have success as a dental temp.  

How to Find Dental Temp Work

There are many ways to find temp work, and it boils down to what works best for you.  

If you want someone to handle everything for you, work with a local dental staffing agency.  They work directly with the offices and temps to help them find coverages and confirm everything for you. 

If you want to control your own schedule. Know the name of the office before you accept the shift. Want to be hired or work as a temp without having the office be billed every time you show up. AND still have the support of a staffing agency, head to DirectDental and make your temp profile. 

If you want total autonomy, join Facebook groups and reach out to your previous classmates and former coworkers to find shifts to work. 

How to find temp shifts on DirectDental 

Sign up with DirectDental– Make sure to mark “Temp” as your availability and include the days you can work on your temp calendar.  Make sure all your contact information is correct and your settings allow us to contact you via email and phone.  

Once that is complete, you will show up in temp results that match your profile and dental offices can request you for temp shifts.  You will be notified via text message when you have been requested and you can accept or decline the shift right from your phone.  

We also allow you to search and apply for temp work.  This video, needs to be updated, but it will show you how to search for temp jobs from your phone.  However, rather than clicking “Sort by” then “Temp-Soonest available” you will click “Select Date” and pick the day you want to temp. 

Now that you found a temp job, let’s get prepared. 

The Nuts and Bolts of Temping

Once you accept a temp shift, make sure you are prepared. Call the office as soon as you accept the shift and discuss all of these items with them.

  • Confirm the Shift Date(s)
  • Start and End time
  • Address
  • Parking info
  • Attire
  • Your pay rate

DirectDental requires that all dental offices pay their dental temps following their local labor laws.  In California, this is how dental temps are to be paid

No matter your location or what your labor laws state, here are the items we suggest you bring to your shift. 

  1. A w4 – This lets the office know how much to withhold in taxes.
  2. An i9 – This allows the office to show proof that you are legally able to work in the United States.
  3. Your i9 identifications.  This can be your passport OR your driver’s license AND Social Security Card.
  4. Your licenses – If a practice is ever audited, they need to show proof that you had all the certifications to do the job they paid you to do. These can vary state to state, but for most states, here are the requirements.  

Dental Assistant: Radiation (x-ray), Infections control, CPR

Registered Dental Assistant: RDA license, CPR

Registered Dental Hygienist: RDH license, CPR

Dentists and Specialists: Dental License, Declaration page of malpractice, CPR and optionally your DEA and Rx pads.

  1. A time card – Optional, these are not required, but help you ensure you will get your paycheck and it will be accurate.  At the end of the day, give them a piece of paper that includes your full name, position worked, rate of pay, mailing address, the date you worked and the hours that you worked.

FREE printable Timesheet

Sign it and have the doctor or office manager sign.  Make a copy or snap a photo on your phone and leave the original. Now there shouldn’t be any questions about when and for how long you worked.

MOST of the time, when a check is inaccurate or late, it is because the office didn’t have clear documentation of how many hours you worked or they didn’t have your mailing address and were trying to hunt you down for the info. This free timesheet alleviates all of that!  Score!

Additional Tips to Succeed in being a Dental Temp

Stay organized

Make sure you don’t mix up your shifts and show up to the wrong office on the wrong day.  

Use your phone’s calendar app or your DirectDental Calendar to keep track of what office your are going to and on what day. 

You also need to keep track of where you worked for tax purposes.  Depending on the labor laws in your area, the offices you temp at should be sending you w2 at the beginning of next year and you need to make sure you received them all.  DirectDental does not track this for you, so make sure you have a good system in place.  

Have Fun

Temping is FUN!  You get to go to various offices, see how they operate and learn new things with every shift.  Plus, if the office is a stressful one, at the end of the day, you don’t ever have to return there again.  So smile, makes friends and have fun. 

If you want to work there, let them know 

Most offices are short staffed and using temps to help alleviate the stress for their current employees.  If you like the office, let them know you would be open to working with them if and when a position become available.  They might just hire you right on the spot.  

If you are looking for a permanent job, I suggest you treat every temp shift like a working interview.  Here is a post on how to master the working interview.  

Stay connected

When you leave at the end of the day, let the office know you would be happy to temp with them again and exchange contact information.  You can also ask them what temp days they need in the future and get yourself confirmed for those days right then and there.  DirectDental doesn’t charge daily fees so you don’t need to notify us if you are returning to an office to temp.  

Lastly, here are some posts that we send to the dental offices on how they can have success with dental temps.  They are worth a read so you know how offices should behave while you are temping with them.

CA offices – How you should pay your dental temps
How to have success with a dental temp

I hope this post helps answer all your questions about temping.  If not, reach out to us.  We are more than happy to help.  


Holli Perez

DirectDental- How it works for Dental Professionals
DirectDental- How it works for Dental Offices
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