Embezzlement: Protecting Your Dental Office

Thu, May 07, 2015 at 8:45AM

Did you know that three in every five dentists will be embezzlement victims at some point in their career? It’s an unfortunate statistic but that is why we are here to help! The size of your office does not make a difference, whether you are a large office or a small one with a few employees, you’re always at risk of fraud. Embezzlement can be anywhere from “skimming” to fraudulent disbursements. Embezzlement sometimes comes without notice, while other times there are signs. Every dental office is a candidate for embezzlement, so you need to learn ways to prevent it from happening. Here are some tips to help prevent, detect, and deter fraud within your dental practice:

Front Desk Staff

Pay close attention to your front desk staff’s behavior. These positions have the greatest opportunity for embezzlement. Some traits of scheming staff could be living beyond their means or those who become extremely territorial. While many smaller practices may have family friends or members working the front desk, if can be hard to confront such behavior.

Run Your Practice

Take notice of the daily production including how much you should be collecting as well as when you should be collecting. When you first opened your practice you were involved in just about every aspect of the business; you may have strayed in recent years as you’ve hired those under you to do these jobs. It’s important to stay on top of the business side of your practice as it grows rather than having a lax demeanor.

Implement Programs

Implementing programs such as bonus and incentives can do wonders for your practice, not just help prevent fraud and embezzlement. It’s known that employees who feel valued and feel as though they are compensated fairly are less likely to act on ways to increase their income. The best way to go about this is to set achievable goals and reward outstanding performances. In return you will see an increase in staff productivity and company morale.

Engage With a Dental CPA

Your CPA, preferably a Dental CPA who will know your situation as well as your industry, isn’t a once a year relationship. You should engage in a review with your Dental CPA at least twice a year to go over your financials. Dental CPAs are pertinent to the well-being of your dental practice because they can compare your results to others in the industry and investigate where you could be doing better and how you can succeed. Reach out to RealTime CPAs to discuss which plan would work best for your practice and how our professional Dental CPAs can help.

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