Carrot Approach to Radiologist Compensation

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A creative radiologist compensation plan is critical for improving group and individual performance as well as attracting and retaining talent. Transforming your practice from a traditional to an incentive-based compensation plan can be accomplished through this three-phase process:

Phase I. Review and Prioritize.
This phase involves an assessment of the current status of the group.

  • Review the group’s vision, goals and strategic objectives
  • Benchmark group and individual compensation and productivity against national benchmarks
  • Outline goals for the Incentive-Based compensation plan
  • Begin to discuss, educate and create awareness among all group members regarding the current status of the group, and share the benchmarking information.

Phase II. Develop and Implement.
This phase involves designing and outlining the implementation considerations for the compensation plan.

• Determine the categories and individual activities that individual performance will be measured against, eg teaching, clinical, administrative, and research.

• Develop a comprehensive scoring system (RVUs versus points) for measuring performance for individual activities.

• Assign weights to the activities based on the group’s goals and vision.

• Determine the incentives—monetary vs non-monetary—and the schedule for awarding the incentives.

• Establish guidelines for data collection, verification and measurements and gain consensus from all members of the group.

Phase III. Monitor and Modify.
This phase is ongoing and critical to the success of the incentive-based compensation plan.

• Study the impact of the plan on individual behaviors and unintended consequences (eg cherry picking).

• Create a feedback mechanism to continuously monitor and modify the plan to meet the group’s goals and objectives.

Moving successfully through these phases requires patience as you plan and evaluate, and, more importantly, strong leadership and buy-in from all stakeholders.