“Dental Labs Suck- How can you tell which ones don’t?”

Are you a practicing dentist screaming daily that your dental lab work sucks? Do you feel the lab work does not reflect the quality of your care? Do you work for someone else and have no control over what lab you are using or do you own your own practice and have a choice? If you own your own practice, we are sure that you have changed labs in the past because you were frustrated, disappointed, or discontented with the quality, time, or outcome invested in the lab work. What makes a dental lab different? How and the heck do you find all of this out before you become invested in the process? If you just asked yourself that question, or have asked that question in the past, then, try this answer on for fit, and see if it is a good size for you.

Dental labs run similar to a dental practice. There are different types, different qualities, and different expectations to consider. In the dental office world, having established systems for success in place is a must. You can either follow the systems that guide your business, or you try to wing it and see what happens. This is the same in the world of dental labs. There are scheduling systems, quality control systems, communication systems, etc., that allow a dental lab to be successful, or they fly by the seat of their pants and wing it…

When labs have poor turnaround times, it passes that reputation to the doctor for having poor turnaround times for his or her patient satisfaction. Having a world of issues that can possibly occur between a preparation date and a cementation date, can translate into loss of revenue. As you know, this costs money and decreases patient satisfaction. The doctor’s satisfaction and the results will also continue to decrease. Who wants something like that? Poor schedule management is one of the many reasons why some dental labs suck! Other reasons include: poor communication with the doctor and poor quality control. Stop outsourcing and bring it back to America! Don’t pinch pennies when choosing a dental lab partner. You can save your pennies somewhere else in your practice. Finding the right dental lab is the difference between frustrated and exhilarated. No one wants to be frustrated and everyone wants to be exhilarated!

It’s important to keep all of these critical traits in mind when choosing a lab partner.

When choosing a dental lab partner, it is important to keep in mind five traits of an exceptional dental lab:

The Latest Technology

Technology is ever changing and it plays a pivotal role in the production of dental lab work. With digital scanning, 3D digital printing, and efficient milling units are essentials for an exceptional dental lab. Labs must continue to invest and advance with technology in order to meet the ever changing needs of their clients.

Knowledge & Expertise

An excellent dental lab holds many years of industry experience. Certified lab technicians, and support team working in the lab, have ongoing training just as the dentist and his/her team does? 

Use of Modern Materials

The quality of a product depends on the materials used in the fabrication process. An exceptional dental lab pays attention to every detail when selecting materials to use. From the stone and die spacers to the porcelain selection and articulators being used, attention to these details are what makes the outcome exceptional.

Understanding Client Expectations

An exceptional dental lab takes the time to understand the client’s expectations and communication style. This is important for any great relationship, and especially vital, when you’re investing in a relationship that you want to last.

Excellent client communication

An exceptional dental lab did not create a reputation based on bad reviews and negative comments between dentists, but on results and care. When you are seeking out a new lab partnership, you should give the communication a test drive. Talk to a technician, customer support team member, or even the owner to see if you communicate well. You need to work with someone that communicates the way that you communicate best. Are you better by text, email, phone, or video? When are you available to talk to your lab partner? Establishing this prior to a partnership will create a lasting relationship filled with exceptional results and happy patients.

To find out if we are the right fit for you, email bob@williamsdentallab.com and set up a time to discover what makes us a world of difference. 


  1. I have been a dentist for over 25 years now and have worked with many labs along the way. I have had the pleasure to work with Bob Clark and Williams Dental Lab for ~12 years now and can’t imagine practicing without them. We have done a lot of beautiful dentistry together and Bob has always given me 3 things that have helped make my practice successful and my patients happy. 1) outstanding customer service- Bob treats me, and I am sure all of his clients, like gold. I have asked Bob for many things over the years that most labs would have said no way and would not even bother to see if there was a way they could help me and my patients. Bob never tells me he can’t help me. Many times he also offers great advice that results in a better case. 2) If I need a quick turnaround on a case, its never a problem. He is there for you and your patients and has as much care and concern for your patients as you do. 3) His porcelain is consistently excellent and beautiful. We have done many, many challenging cases together and I know from experience that Williams is the only lab that can create a beautiful result no matter the challenges. They are committed to the success of your practice and the happiness of your patients like no other lab I have ever worked with. Thank you for all you do Bob Clark and Williams Dental Lab!

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