Mark Opperman, CVPM, is a certified veterinary practice manager and owner of VMC Inc., a veterinary consulting firm based in Evergreen Colo. Through his firm, he has consulted with more than 800 veterinary hospitals throughout North America, providing assistance in associate hiring, partnership formation, exit strategies, employee issues, profitability, efficiency, and more. He has lectured worldwide at meetings such as the CVC shows, the North American Veterinary Conference, the World Small Animal Veterinary Conference, the Denmark Annual Congress, and the London Veterinary Forum. Opperman founded the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association and served as president until 1993. Through his VMC School of Veterinary Practice Management, he has trained more than 250 practice managers.
A profession open about its economic woes needs veterinary associations to 'spin' negative public perception to make clients understand the need—and struggle—for financially strapped veterinarians to make a profit.
Q: Currently, we are paying our doctors a base salary plus a 22 percent production bonus quarterly. While my boss thinks it's more fair to the company to calculate production based on net numbers rather than gross, we have another doctor who feels the opposite. Is there an industry standard on such things?