YO’ AHOY MATES TIME TO ABANDON SHIP! Staff Turnover Costs Big.
Extensive staff turnover rates in a medical practice can create confusion, decrease efficiency and hurt morale. In addition, it can impact patient satisfaction, reduce short-term cash flow and long-term practice value. The financial repercussions alone are enough to make medical practice owners want to abandon ship at the moment they hear those all too familiar words, “I’m sorry but I have turn in my two-week notice”.
“Staff turnover costs include productivity losses during training, recruiting and lost work while a position is vacant. For all jobs earning less than $50,000 per year, or more than 40 percent of U.S. jobs, the average cost of replacing an employee amounts to fully 20 percent of the person’s annual salary,” according to Suzanne Lucas, CBS Money Watch.
So when you review the staff turnover in your medical practice it is definitely worth keeping a weather eye on the horizon and seeking ways to assure that your team stays productive and on deck.
Here are three reasons your crew may be grabbing their parrots and abandoning ship:
REASONS YOUR CREW MAY BE CHOOSING TO WALK THE PLANK
Too Many Captains (Practice Administrators)
Good, strong leadership within a crew is crucial to a well-run ship. Often practices do not have clear lines of authority. I have observed situations in which practice administrators are given the responsibility of running the practice but none of the authority to make it happen. Practice owners are advised to review your management team to assure there are well-defined role descriptions and no conflicts of tasks. Mutinies can abound when the crew has too many captains giving orders from both ends of the ship.
Scurvy Due to Lack of Improper Pay and Incentives
Nothing can send a crew searching for another ship faster than low wages and lack of incentives. While staff salaries are clearly a concern for practice administration, it is important for the practice to pay competitive rates to attract quality personnel. Make sure you have access to what are competitive rates for different positions within your market area. Incentive compensation is an important part of performance management. Tie your incentive compensation not to holidays but, to performance compared to job descriptions and management expectations. People generally do what they get paid to do. Do performance reviews (not salary reviews which are entirely different) at least every 6 months and preferably quarterly. Done frequently, reviews do not have to take long.
Abandon Ship – But Where Are the Life Rafts?
A ship in chaos is not safe in a storm or at battle. As the captain, it is the practice administrator’s responsibility to keep the crew updated on proper procedures and what to do in any emergency whether safety or business related. But what happens if the ropes are old and the ship is sinking due to rotten boards? This is what many practice administrators and office managers are faced with in terms of poor patient flow procedures, inaccurate billing policies, obsolete medical technology, incorrect HIPAA Compliance standards and a lack of proper staff training. Unfortunately, the ship may be already going down before many practices are fully aware that the black flag has been raised and the iceberg is dead ahead.
RED SKY IN THE MORNING SAILORS TAKE WARNING
To keep your medical practice crew happy, working as a team and kept from jumping ship, it is important to keep a weather eye on the horizon. Evaluating your practice goals and procedures yearly will help your team to navigate the murky waters of patient care; the buried treasure being a well-run office, a positive staff environment and increased revenues.
If your medical practice is facing a treacherous storm of high staff turnover, HIPAA Compliance failure or has simply fallen off course, contact Medical Consultants Group or phone us at: (404) 272-4883. Our RAPID (Revenues and Profits Increasing Dramatically) Consulting Program has the compass, maps and skilled seamen to get your practice back pointing north and sailing smoothly.
Ships, Image courtesy of TheBrassGlass@morguefiles.com
Compass, Image courtesy of firstname.lastname@example.org
Lucas, Suzanne. “How much Does It Cost Companies to Lose Employees?” Weblog post. CBS Money Watch. CBS Interactive, 21 Nov. 2012. Web. 20 May 2016.