Maintaining confidentiality during the sale of your dental practice is incredibly important to protecting the value of your practice, ensuring the sale and transition run smoothly and preserving the peace in your practice and patient base. Check out why that is true here.
Once you've decided you are ready to sell your dental practice, you've contacted a broker and started the process, you still have some prep to do for your practice to be listed and marketed to other dentists interested in buying.
Dental practice brokers need some very specific information about your practice to effectively market to qualified buyers. We will give you a list of these documents, or you can DOWNLOAD THE LIST HERE and the resources we have to help you gather this information, but it can be tricky when you are trying to maintain confidentiality.
For example, brokers need reports to gauge how your dental practice is running day-to-day, what your practice's revenue is by dentists and by hygienists and fee schedules, to name a few.
All in all, our dental brokers will normally request about 20 different reports and documents from your dental practice - requiring seven to start - to maximize their efforts.
This may sound daunting.
It can be difficult for doctors to gather these reports and documents AND maintain confidentiality. You will have to use your dental software, payroll software and more to gather these reports. After all, your office manager and front desk staff normally handle these programs for you, right?
Don't worry! Here are our best six tips to help you get the information you need, without alarming the office.
DO get a list of all documents and reports you need.
We will provide this list to you as soon as you need it, or DOWNLOAD HERE, to start planning. The challenge for most doctors in this position is pulling the reports their dental practice broker needs. If you don't normally run these reports, some of them can be difficult to pull. This leads to doctors thinking they should tell their office manager to have them help... this leads to our first DON'T.
DON'T let your broker talk out of having practice confidentiality.
Different dental practice brokers have different views on confidentiality - some believe you should tell your staff you are selling, and some don't. At JPA Dental Transitions, we always advise to keep confidentiality so we can help you control the process. You may be tempted to ask for help from people in your office. Here's why you shouldn't.
DO use your CPA.
Once you have your list of documents you need to sell your dental practice, you can share it with your CPA to see what he or she can provide for you, before you try to find the information yourself. Your CPA can pull most of the finanial statements your dental practice broker needs, like profit loss statements and tax returns. Make sure you use a dental specific CPA and other dental professionals who understand the process of a dental practice transition. They will be mindful of your need for confidentiality that outside professionals may not. Check out our Pro Network of reliabe dental professionals who can help in your dental practice transition.
DON'T leave your documents on the fax machine or printer.
Sure, this one sounds like a no-brainer, but it's a mistake we've seen before. You don't want your team to find out that you are selling your practice before you are ready to tell them - and sure don't want that to happen on accident. The whole point of confidentiality is keeping the peace in the office and the community to maintain the integrity of the sale.
DO start doing a quarterly review and get access to the right systems as soon as you start thinking about selling.
If you're reading this article, you've probably already started thinking about selling, if you haven't already started the process. Now is a great time to start doing quarterly reviews with your staff, pulling the reports you will need when you sell. This way when you finally get to the stage of your dental practice transition where you need these documents, it will be a normal practice for you to pull these reports and you will be informed on how to do it.
DON'T use your work email and phone number.
When you are communicating with your dental practice's CPA, your dental practice broker and other professionals on your transition team, use your personal email and phone number. You don't want someone with confidential information calling your practice and asking your front desk, "Can I speak to Dr. Smith? I have some information about the sale of the practice." This is especially true if your staff has your email password or access to your accounts on an office computer.
We know this is a lot to remember, but don't worry, we're on your side!