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Inside Dental Technology
September 2013
Volume 4, Issue 9

Trust in Refining

Jensen Dental Refining—Results that fit your business

Whether returns from dental scrap refining are used to purchase new equipment, invest in the business, or to provide bonuses to staff, one of the most important decisions a dental laboratory can make to ensure the best possible returns is regarding the company it chooses to do the refining. A trusted, established refining company will maximize the return on a laboratory’s dental scrap and provide value-added services, including advice for alternative scrap collection and metal controls that can increase the laboratory’s processes and profits.

As an integrated dental alloy and refining company, Jensen Dental is committed to providing dental laboratories with the best refining yields and the highest level of service.

That high level of customer service and the benefits of working with a company that is also an alloy company are the main reasons Kim Ravdin, owner of Champlain Dental Lab in South Burlington, VT, has been a satisfied customer of Jensen since 2009. She has seen great benefits to ordering her alloy from Jensen and refining with the company. “My sales representative is great. She looks at what we’re ordering, what we’re refining, and she really makes sure that we’re not losing alloy,” Ravdin explains, adding that Jensen representatives “actually came to our laboratory to make sure we were keeping what we needed to with our alloy-to-scrap ratios, even in terms of looking at how we sprued to see if we could use smaller buttons and things like that. They really walked through our whole process to see if we were using the alloy to the best use. And then we refine with them, so they give us really good feedback on the quality of what they’re seeing.” The feedback allows Ravdin to ensure that the laboratory isn’t overcasting and that the alloy is still in really good condition.

“It gives me a really good handle on what we’re purchasing, what we’re using, and what we’re refining,” says Ravdin.

Larry Stoller, owner of Stoller Dental Lab in Bluffton, IN, agrees that customer service and knowledge of the industry make Jensen Dental a great choice for refining services. Stoller, who has been a Jensen customer since the 1980s, says he has been extremely satisfied with excellent service from his sales representative and values the advice and honesty the company has always offered. He says he first started working with Jensen to purchase alloys after having technical issues with cracking and contamination with products his laboratory was purchasing from another company. When he called Jensen, Stoller says, the company immediately put him in touch with a customer service representative who was able to identify the problem with the other company’s product, finding that the porcelain wasn’t compatible with the type of metal the laboratory was using. “Jensen sent us samples of metal to use on a couple crowns to try it and see if we liked it any better, without any obligation to buy it. They were really willing to work with us. And at the time I was really a small account, we were doing 30 crowns a week, if that. Now we do over 300 a week.” Stoller describes that his Jensen Sales Consultant also offered advice early on to improve the amount of scrap the lab could collect.

When the laboratory was in a different facility, where, Stoller says, nothing was organized and the dust collecting system was really bad, his Jensen representative explained that the laboratory could almost pay for a new upgraded vacuum system, especially in the metal grading areas, because of the of the extra collection they would get with better equipment. Stoller says it wasn’t long after that that the laboratory was completely remodeled.

“He was right, the amount of scrap we were sending in went up about 20% due to the better suctioning equipment,” Stoller says, adding that he wished he had listened to the rep’s advice a little sooner.

Seeing how Jensen went out of its way to work with him made Stoller trust Jensen with the lab’s refining needs “When you send your refining in, you have no idea if it’s $1,000 or $50,000—you have to go with a company you really trust,” Stoller says. “I don’t know if we’re one of the larger accounts. I have no idea, but they make you feel as if you’re really important. Even when I was small, they made me feel that way.”

Transparency in Service

Jensen Dental prides itself on being open and transparent, as well as its ability to offer consistent performance over time. The company’s customers completely agree.

Stoller says that when Jensen receives scrap for refining, the laboratory gets a personal call from Jensen to confirm what was received, followed up with a letter that details the same information in writing and offers a settlement date. Jensen also calls to offer a settlement review before moving forward.

“For all the years we’ve been with them, they have never extended that date,” Stoller says. “That is the date your scrap is ready, it’s like it is chiseled in stone.”

Ravdin says she trusts that Jensen always offers fair market valuefor her refining, explaining that one time the return on the laboratory’sscrap was much lower than it had been. After calling withquestions, her representative took the time to go through everythingwith her so she could understand why the return was what it was.

“I really trust them,” Ravin says. “I do believe that they are honestand really giving you true value for what you’re sending to them.They’ve shown me pictures of the refining area and offer tours ifyou want to see the facility. It looks like it’s very well organized andmaintained, and you don’t fear that your stuff is just getting throwninto this big vat with everyone else’s stuff.”

Stoller adds, “I’ve just always felt that Jensen is so upfront withevery fee they charge with refining. There’s no hidden fee. Whenthey tell you something, it’s almost gospel. It’s a great company todeal with.”

Stoller says that he has even recommended Jensen to his own customers. When dentists have come to him asking what company they could send crowns they have collected to for refining, Stoller has the dentists send the material to him to send to Jensen. He sends the scrap to Jensen, and Jensen, in turn, sends a check directly to the doctor.

“It’s a total trust system, the doctor is trusting me with his scrap gold, I’m trusting Jensen, and the doctor is indirectly trusting Jensen to do it right.”

Another benefit to working with a company that is an integrated dental alloy and refining company like Jensen Dental is that when a laboratory settles, Jensen can offer options in payment in check, alloy, credit, or coin bullion. “It’s such an easy process. Once you get it refined you can even exchange it for product,” says Ravdin.


Qualities to Look for in a Refiner

Leading refiners offer a high level of service and personal attention, which includes providing:

·      Confirmation of scrap receipt.

·      Photographic or digital recording of the materials being received and inspected.

·      Shipping and processing rate information.

·      Free shipping containers.

·      Limited transit insurance protection.

·      Free advice, including access to the refining manager and key sales staff.

·      Detailed information about your settlement process and return.

·      Recommendations to improve your material control system and increase yields.


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