DentalPost’s 2021 Salary Survey indicates that 48% of front office team members in the U.S. earn less than $40,000 per year, while 38% earn between $41,000 – $60,000. This salary data combines responses from dental receptionists and other front office administrators. According to Dental Post’s survey, a dental front office manager earns an average of $64,000 per year. The top 10% of office managers average more than $87,000 per year.
In the United States, recognition of the front desk team of a dental office is on Administrative Professionals Day, which is the Wednesday during Administrative Professionals Week (the fourth week of April). The American Association of Dental Office Managers has declared August as Dental Office Manager Appreciation Month.
View the calendar of the National Dental Holidays.
A front dental office is the administrative and business center of a dental practice. The activities in the dental front office include answering phones, scheduling appointments, receiving and updating patient information, treatment fee estimation and presentation, processing payments and insurance claims, communicating the needs of patients and their arrival to other team members, sending out appointment reminders, performing financial accounting, maintaining an organized and pleasant reception area, and more. Dental office managers oversee these activities and have additional responsibilities such as Human Resources (HR), monitoring key performance metrics of the practice, vendor contact and purchasing, facilities management, marketing, and more.
View the dental front office job description and qualifications.
In the typical U.S. dental practice, there are four business office positions (1) dental receptionist to answer inquiries and schedule patients; (2) treatment coordinator to assemble treatment plan documentation, present treatment fees, get signed consent for treatment, and ensure accurate completion of patient records; (3) accounts manager to perform billing, process insurance claims, and do financial AR and AP accounting); and (4) the office manager to oversee smooth running of all practice operations, including those functions listed above, plus hiring, training, employee scheduling, software management, facilities management, supply control, performance measurement, and often also marketing. In a small office, one employee might perform all business functions. In other small offices, consolidation of duties ensures one or more administrators do reception, scheduling, treatment coordination, and financial accounts management, with an office manager overseeing them. In some dental practices, there are crossover dental assistants or hygienists who perform front office business tasks during some of their scheduled hours.
View the dental front office job description.