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One facet of the medical sales market is that of dental sales. This area includes capital equipment, dental products and a limited amount of pharmaceutical products. This niche market is attractive in various ways compared to that of the traditional medical sales position. Generally, managed care is not as much of an obstacle, since many services are covered under dental plans or the patient is treated on a fee-for-service basis. Many dental sales professionals cover large geographies and sell a variety of products. Most dental sales representatives have sole responsibility and accountability regarding their territory. This is in contrast to the pharmaceutical sales environment whereas 2-5 representatives may be calling upon the same physician.
Training and Education
As with most pinnacle type sales positions, dental sales companies prefer a four-year degree from an accredited college or university. Depending upon the position, it may not be critical regarding what discipline the candidate studied. Some dental sales positions prefer someone with a science background, such as a degree in biology, while others are okay with simply a marketing degree. Many dental sales companies want individuals with strong business-to-business sales experience such as cell phones, copier, rental car, or uniform sales type backgrounds. Additionally, dental sales representatives may develop long term relationships with the dental professionals they call upon and be very successful over a number of years.
Example of dental companies include Dentsply, Henry Schein, Patterson Dental and Burkhart Dental.
Dental sales can be a lucrative field. Depending upon the company, the representative may earn a low base, but be provided a much greater opportunity in the form of commission or other variable compensation. The commission component in this structure may be capped or uncapped. The other possibility relative to compensation is that the representative is paid a higher base, but with little or no commission opportunity. A significant number of positions in the dental sales field start in the $50K range with potential total income of 75-100K+. A company car or vehicle reimbursement may be provided.
The need for dentists and the demand in the field relative to supplies and new equipment continues to grow. Our country’s demographics and aging population will continue to demand expanded dental services, supplies and products. To satisfy this demand there will be a need for dental sales representatives, regional managers, district managers and product managers. New digital technology in the field of dentistry continues to transform dental offices in to state-of-the-art facilities. This type of new equipment and services will provide additional opportunities not seen just ten years ago.
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