Embezzlement is a very difficult problem to diagnose and remedy! It can dramatically affect your collection percentage and net earnings. You must tread warily here.
Collection percentage is not the only indicator of embezzlement. You may be meeting your expected targets and you may still be leaking cash because of embezzlement.
You may require a third party to investigate and audit your cashflow When you do confirm that someone has been stealing, act immediately. First, contact your lawyer and consult with your trusted human resources adviser.
There are multiple ways you can reduce the risk of embezzlement in your office too numerous to discuss here but here are some quick tips:
- Criminal record check for all employees
- Check references and speak to last employer
- Be wary of team members asking for cash advances or early paydays
- Don’t leave one person in charge of the finances (split the role)
- Print an audit trail daily from your practice management software
- Receive visa and checking account statements at your home
- Review adjustments and question them
- Be concerned about employees with personal issues, potential drug abuse problems and those who refuse to take time off or share their role with other team members
Additional Tip: One quick measurement I do every month is as follows
Comparison of “reported collected revenue” on our practice management software with the total monies deposited in our bank account for the same period. This is not perfect method and has flaws but it is definitely a great indictor as to whether a problem exists or not. Lack of congruency here doesn’t mean your problem is embezzlement so don’t start pointing any fingers just yet. It simply warrants further investigation to determine the root cause of the problem.
***Don’t make the mistake of thinking it could never happen to me. Put protection measures in place today!