Physical Therapy Bonus Structure

I am often asked the question, “What bonus system should I use for my physical therapists?” My answer, seemingly vague at first, is that it should be based on their level of production being above average.

The result of any bonus system should be increased production in quantity and quality. If the bonus plan does not do that, it should be canceled and replaced by one that does.

Many clients have done well basing their bonus plans on number of visits in a period of time, as compared to the expected production. For example, if the expected production in a week is 60 visits, anything above 60 is rewarded with a bonus. This presents the problem of sacrificing quality if the person is money-motivated and will rush the actions to get the bonus. To avoid that, you can stop paying bonuses above the quantity that would sacrifice quality if you went above.

Now, if you really want to reward quality and quantity, I would give a bonus for successfully completed treatment plans, which could be defined as a treatment plan that results in the complete satisfaction of the patient per survey. Upon inspection it will be shown that the patient has received the amount and frequency of treatment prescribed at the evaluation and within the expected period of time. I would even add that all internal and external paperwork has been completed and turned in as well. Would this really measure that the therapist is doing a good job, in terms of quantity and quality? Absolutely!

While one bonus system can be very well written, another one can be very complex math-wise, another one can be too simplistic, etc. The only measure of whether it is working is if it is raising production and people are making it to bonus level. The more you depart from this concept, the more you are not benefiting as an owner from your staff’s work.