Ultradent named top 10 by 'Fortune' agazineNov 22, 2021 02:10PM ● By Rachel Aubrey
Ultradent headquarters located in South Jordan develops, manufactures and distributes dental products. (Photo courtesy Ultradent)
By Rachel Aubrey | [email protected]
South Jordan based company Ultradent received recognition by “Fortune” magazine as being one of the top 10 workplaces in production and manufacturing, coming in at number nine. Ultradent is a global dental supply company developing, manufacturing and distributing high quality dental products locally, nationally and internationally.
A problem in the dental field in the 1970s led Dr. Dan Fischer to develop a groundbreaking blood coagulant known today as Astringedent. The subsequent creation of a specialized tool for application of the substance prompted Fischer to found a company to back and distribute his products. Ultradent is the result.
Today the company is headed by CEO and President Dirk Jeffs, who joined the Ultradent family in 1995. Originally hired to spearhead international sales, Jeffs quickly gained a lot of responsibility and recalled that Dr. Fischer placed a lot of trust in him. He remembered being drawn to Dr. Fischer and to the vision and culture of the company.
“The culture of the company emanated from him [Dr. Fischer] and his values, and his personality and the way he treated people, and continues to treat people,” Jeffs said.
According to the company website, “at Ultradent, you are treated like family.”
Demand Generation Manager Lindsay Bogart joined the Ultradent family in October of 2019. Bogart was looking for a rare thing in the design world, wanting to do coding and front-end development as well as web design. Bogart was hired initially to be the web design team lead, however her job trajectory grew to include all online marketing as well as web design for Ultradent.
Bogart noted at the time of her interview that it was unique to see employees wanting to stay and that Ultradent was willing to help them grow professionally. Bogart said it was one of the reasons she chose to take a position with Ultradent rather than another company she was considering at the time.
“Everyone has been here for many years,” Bogart said. “It is such an amazing place to work,”
Melissa Axen, a team lead in the research and development department at Ultradent, shared similar sentiments about the work culture. Part of the family since February 2014, Axen, originally from Colorado with a master’s of science in organic chemistry, admitted that very early on in her tenure, she noticed that her coworkers genuinely cared about her, not just professionally, but personally as well.
“I genuinely do love where I work,” Axen said. “I’ve never been able to say that with as much confidence as I can.”
As a product development scientist, Axen said that she interacts frequently with other departments of the company such as clinical affairs, interfacing with dental professionals, as well as the brand managers and marketing team to ensure innovations are sustainable and well suited for the market.
The mentality of her coworkers is a problem solving one, and despite the flexibility allowed in research and development, the ultimate goal of creating solutions that matter for people keep her and her team optimistic and thinking ahead.
“The things that are coolest to see are when Ultradent sponsors a Doctors Without Borders type of thing,” Axen said. “To see the impact of the products that you make on a little kid whose life would be very different.”
After Axen and her team develop a product or idea, it then goes to an employee like Diehl Mutamba, a quality engineer, who then enters the process of validating the idea, product or process to ensure desirable results. A Utah resident since 2008, Mutamba went through a unique and, as he recalled, intimidating, interview process. He said he proceeded with multiple rounds of interviews for the position because of his eventual coworkers.
“After meeting the team that I would eventually end up working with, I felt comfortable, they made me feel comfortable,” Mutamba said.