Due to the inevitable economic downturn brought about by the pandemic, it is unsurprising to hear disheartening stories about companies struggling to stay afloat.
Although COVID-19 has unarguably left a negative impact on most businesses, Dentsply Sirona, the pioneer in digital dentistry, has demonstrated resilience and emerged unscathed.
In fact, the company hasn’t stopped launching new products amid the crisis. With their future-oriented vision, Henning Mueller, group vice president of Asia Pacific, shared how the company is managing the challenges of the pandemic while continuing to deliver innovative solutions and support dental professionals.
Defying the historic threat
Prioritising the health and safety of their employees and customers is the secret to Dentsply Sirona’s success in handling the challenges of COVID-19.
As the pioneer of digital dentistry, they maximised the potential of technology to ensure that their team members stay motivated with high morale especially during the peak of the virus spread.
Mueller, shared, “We’ve utilised a variety of digital channels, including our intranet (DS Community), videos, town hall live stream broadcasts to employees in all regions. We have also hosted regular live chats with the management team to encourage dialogue and address employees’ questions from nearly every corner of the world. We even have a vibrant series of podcasts that also help keep us engaged and connected.”
More importantly, they implemented protocols to safeguard the well-being of their team. They have enabled work-from-home set up for employees who can perform their job remotely and restricted all crossborder international travel and non-essential domestic travel.
As for supporting their customers, Dentsply Sirona has rapidly shifted their programmes from in-person to online learning. To their surprise, the market responded positively. More than 800,000 dental professionals, including more than 712,000 dentists, attended clinical education course in the first half of the year 2020 and over 93 percent of those courses were offered virtually.
“No one else in the industry comes close to the breadth and depth of our offering. Dentists took advantage of the opportunity to learn about routine dental procedures including endodontics, restorative dentistry, orthodontics, and implant dentistry,” shared Mueller.
However, with the unique geographic and socio-economic circumstances of the APAC region, Dentsply Sirona had to curate special strategies to accommodate the market demands.
“In the APAC region, we were hit with the COVID-19 pandemic before anyone else in the world. Numerous digital formats, such as online training, digital congresses, and trade fairs, as well as internal training and meetings,
were set up,” noted Mueller.
He added that one of the many first highlights included a new online training programme that was developed and implemented in China when the COVID-19 outbreak began in January 2020; then the first live online course took place just on 9th February.
In less than three weeks, 46 courses were set up, which were viewed by a six-digit number of dental professionals.
At the beginning of April, a webinar series was launched in Australia.
As part of that, Dentsply Sirona developed the “Endo Hacks” together with Dr Omar Ikram – a format for general information about dentine preservation during root canal treatment. More than 1,700 dental professionals from all over the world took part.
In the middle of March, the Dentsply Sirona Taiwan Team arranged a virtual trade fair. The two-day event included live broadcasts with interactive elements, a webinar on aesthetic anterior restorations, and numerous product presentations.
The multiple possibilities for interaction gave the “visitors” the feeling of being part of the event.
Mueller, continued, “The Dentsply Sirona Dental Solutions Week in Korea in June, as well as the Total Solutions Week in Singapore from October to November, were both special events for dental professionals. We also equipped major hospitals and their dental departments with our products this year, for example in Korea and Thailand.”
The company accelerated these activities so they can operate more efficiently and remain the ideal partner to their customers.
On top of it, Dentsply Sirona has successfully held the inaugural virtual edition of Dentsply Sirona World.
And having dental professionals from 25 countries participate demonstrated the solidarity of the dental community to live up to their responsibility of ensuring healthy smiles for their patients.