In a medical office that is already busy, an empty staff position can be a real problem. Days that were already full and often hectic are even more so. Patients are complaining. The instinctive response is to fill the slot ASAP. Resist the impulse! Any short-term relief will almost inevitably produce long-term aggravation and higher employment costs.
The data varies widely, but it is generally agreed that filling a staff position costs more than the associated annual salary. Most of these costs are “soft costs” that have a real impact on productivity and operating costs but do not require the practice to write a check to cover them. They include:
• Lost productivity and increased overtime while the position is vacant.
• Time associated with interviewing candidates.
• Even more lost productivity and increased overtime while the new hire is learning the ropes.
The biggest soft cost, however, is making a hiring mistake. It adds the angst of being dissatisfied with the new person, having to figure out how to get rid of him, and getting to repeat the selection and hiring process from scratch. One mistake increases the cost of filling the initial position to three times to five times the annual salary, or more.
Hiring carefully is worth the investment. For six steps to significantly reduce hiring costs, read the full article here.