Smile Source Private Dental Practice Blog

How One Practice is Reducing Overhead and Retaining Their Team

In just 4 months, Rhodes & Rhodes Family Dentistry was able to pay its team more by reducing overhead through Smile Source.



Rhodes and Rhodes Family Dentistry in Tuscaloosa, Alabama is owned by Belinda Rhodes, DDS, and Melinda Rhodes, DDS. Together these sisters practice family dentistry, provide comprehensive oral care, and strive to provide the highest level of care with the latest technology. Both earned their doctorates from the University of Michigan Dental School and are passionate about providing exceptional care in a relationship-based, private practice environment.

But they had a problem that needed immediate resolution.

High overhead was impacting what they could pay their team members. But running a dental practice is hard and finding the time to research and negotiate every purchase and expense was daunting, if not impossible. The pressure was real and the frustration was too. 

"A major frustration we had was seeing the overhead expenses steadily increase and not having the time or energy to look for other suppliers and technology."


They discovered Smile Source and found savings they never imagined

The sisters became Smile Source members in October of 2023 and by February 2024 they were already seeing a massive shift. Smile Source resulted in so many savings that they felt confident to increase compensation to retain their employees at a time in the industry when labor is in short supply. There is high competition for experienced dental workers seeking higher incomes. Bumping up raises in 2024 made all the difference in retaining their valued staff and making them happier.

“One hygienist gave us a 2-week notice and was going to work at a new chain office in town. We were able to increase the pay for all employees with the savings that we obtained through Smile Source.”

Many corporate dental chains are competing heavily to attract private practice hygienists, dental assistants, and front office team members with higher wages and more benefits. Through the savings, services, and practical advice of the Smile Source community, members find it easier to pay, retain, and offer benefits to their teams at a higher level than an individual private practice dentist.

What community really means

“It has been remarkable how friendly and helpful everyone has been at Smile Source. They want us to succeed,” said Dr. Belinda Rhodes, known by her patients as “Dr. Bebe.”

Six major benefits resulted within just four months: 

  1. Significant savings on overhead costs 

  2. Information for faster and smarter purchase of new technology

  3. Ability to increase dental team compensation

  4. Increased staff engagement

  5. Increased productivity

  6. Reduced stress

Stress less, thrive more

“Our entire staff is happier. I always hear laughter when I walk down the halls. They are more engaged with patients and discuss findings with patients on Pearl, one of our newest technology investments. This leads to more production. 

“Life is easier. I’m not stressed about losing assistants and office staff and having to train all over again. I love that I have a group of Smile Source colleagues who are just a text away if I need advice.

“We’re making the difference we want to make for our patients and employees.” she said, “Staying on track with our mission is now a certainty.”

Smile-Source-blog_Dr-Rhodes-Rhodes-Family-Dental"I can hardly believe that in just four months, we are stronger than ever and will thrive even though there are corporate dental chains all around us, competing for our employees and patients. 

We have a very special practice and we love coming to work every day, surrounded by our dental family. I like to chat regularly with other Smile Source members in our region. We share tips and discuss our mutual and sometimes uniquely personal challenges. 

I sense we all feel very much “alive,” able to thrive, and encouraged by each other. I am looking forward to the National Exchange Meeting. I know it will be incredibly informative and inspiring."

— Belinda Rhodes, DDS


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At Smile Source, we believe in preserving the essence of independent dentistry. Our mission is to empower dentists like you to maintain ownership of your practice while accessing the support and benefits of a larger network.

With over a billion dollars in purchasing power, Smile Source members enjoy deep discounts, so overhead goes down. When you join Smile Source, you will have the confidence to make faster, smarter business decisions. We’ve vetted the industry’s top vendors to place leading options at the best prices right at your fingertips. When overhead goes down and profitable productivity goes up, you can hire and retain top talent for your dental practice.