An online advantage for job-hunting

Readers have requested insight on finding dental hygiene employment. I mulled this over a bit and asked myself, "Is it not obvious? Doesn't everyone know how to do a Google search?"

By Trish De Dios, RDH

Readers have requested insight on finding dental hygiene employment. I mulled this over a bit and asked myself, "Is it not obvious? Doesn't everyone know how to do a Google search?" As I began to write from my experience of finding work, I realized my past efforts did lead me to working positions, but hardly to any that were long term or were a "great fit" for me. The job-search process was pretty generic and impersonal. Also, the majority of my job search was done five years ago. Since that time, better ways to search have surfaced regarding organizing your personal resume and/or seeking and applying for work.

I recently had the privilege of meeting Tonya Lanthier, an expert in professional and contemporary job seeking for the dental field. Tonya, a practicing hygienist herself, saw a need for a resource specifically for dental professionals looking to hire and be hired. The solution was born: DentalPost.net! Just think LinkedIn meets monster.com, but uniquely tailored to the dental profession. Brilliant! As CEO and founder of DentalPost, Tonya created a platform for any part of the dental team seeking employment or employees. I am excited to share with you some highlights of the enterprise she has created with the modern dental hygienist in mind.

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Other articles by De Dios

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According to its website, DentalPost.net is an "online jobs network connecting dental professionals and dental practices … with over 300,000 registered users and over 20,000 dental practices posting jobs."

In the modern world of dental hygiene, the role a resume plays is increasingly more important -- no surprise there -- but what may come as a surprise is how dynamic hygiene resumes have become and how the wrong structure and content can often diminish the applicant's chances with just a glance. I would even go so far as to say that even if the resume structure and format are correct, you are still at a disadvantage if your resume lacks originality or is just ... well, "average." DentalPost allows you, the applicant, to complete a "resume profile" to showcase how employable you are.

The resume profile asks you to complete an introduction about yourself, work availability, work experience, skillsets, education, and salary requirements. Also, there is room available to add any honorable mentions, volunteer work, or anything else you see fit. DentalPost is also working on a CE tracker so that potential employers can see courses you have attended.

An added bonus to professionals is the customized nature of the resume; the site exposes weaknesses in a resume. For example, if you have blank sections in your online profile, you can easily see the categories that need more development. Take your resume profile a step above the rest and complete the DISC personality test available to DentalPost users. If potential employers choose, they may browse through applicants based on the applicants' workplace personality, making the hiring process even more targeted to their practice needs.

Finally, after going through the work of perfecting your online profile with DentalPost, don't forget to add a headshot! Tonya reminds applicants of the value of a photo: "Employers want to see the face that essentially will be representing their practice. A smile can convey confidence and get you that interview you deserve." Remember, sites like LinkedIn are becoming industry standard for working professionals; stay abreast of contemporary job seeking opportunities and it will pay off when you land a job that is a perfect fit for you.

Many potential dental employees are familiar with DentalPost and are even subscribed to receive job alerts, but many are not using this incredible resource for everything it offers. Don't forget that this site is also a source of immediate temp services, local events, CE, dental news, dental articles, and classifieds. Soon resume services will be offered. E-mail and mobile alerts are also available.

DentalPost.net is yet another example of how the modern hygienist can gain a competitive advantage while on his or her career development journey.

TRISH DE DIOS, RDH, graduated as president of her dental hygiene class in 2008. She currently works full-time clinically and is also a Regional Coordinator for The Oral Cancer Foundation. She can be contacted at hygienist.trish@gmail.com.

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