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  04.28.05 Issue #164

Sally's Mail Bag

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Dear Sally

I do the payroll in my husband's office. First, I am concerned about the hours the hygienists are clocking in.  Last year their production was 25% of the office production and their compensation was 35% - 37% of their production.  When I figured out the hours for last year, they saw patients for 1,544 hours but they were paid for 1,898 hours.  If I subtract vacation and holidays they had 300 hours more than they produced or they were paid for 37.5 days more than they worked.  This year, they seem to be clocking in almost 10 hours a day but they see patients for only 8 hours. They run late and into lunch and they are going over charts for the next day after work.  They are paid hourly. Are these excessive hours? I think they are taking advantage of my husband and the office. What do you think?

Hygiene Hostage

Dear Hostage,

I would stop paying the hygienists hourly, get rid of the time clock and pay them a daily wage. I don't necessarily look at the fact they were paid 37.5 more hours than they worked as “their problem” but possibly a problem of your recall system and/or lack of accountability at the front office to keep the hygienist's schedule booked to production goals. This is common for us to see this as consultants but it's not necessarily because they are taking advantage of the clock. You could also have more days of hygiene per week than what you need or a malfunctioning recall system that has a high rate of cancellations.

Hope this helps.

Sally

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