Fair, production-based pay

Fair, production-based pay

Dec 01, 2005

I'm a senior clinician getting a straight salary. My boss is changing my pay structure to base plus percentage. I'm nervous because often someone else does a workup and I'm stuck with a no-charge recheck, and sometimes we accept low-cost certificates, resulting in a lower charge.

"I'd suggest you request a method of compensation that I've developed called ProSal," says Veterinary Economics Hospital Management Editor Mark Opperman, CVPM, owner of VMC Inc., a veterinary consulting firm based in Evergreen, Colo. "Under this formula you'd get a guaranteed base salary, but you'd also be paid on a percentage of your production.

"The percentage would be between 18 percent and 25 percent of your production, depending on your benefits. Your total cost of employment to your employer shouldn't exceed 25 percent of your production, including your salary, health insurance, continuing education, dues, license, and so on," he says.

Mark Opperman, CVPM
Under this formula you can't make less than your guaranteed base, but you can certainly make more. "It's a win-win situation," Opperman says. "As far as the low-cost surgeries, they shouldn't affect your salary that much because you can't make less than the guaranteed base." However, he suggests you share these low-cost services evenly among doctors. (For more, see "Using the ProSal Formula".)