Part-Time Practice Considerations
If you’re like most chiropractic students, you plan to work full time after you graduate. But, what if the ideal practice offers you a part-time position instead? Don’t automatically turn it down. It’s important to consider this option from all angles.
Obviously, a part-time position generally pays less than a full-time one. This could be a huge factor, especially if you have student loans and other looming debt. Even without that pressing issue, you’d need to budget more carefully with a smaller paycheck. Keep in mind that it can be tempting to spend more during the extra hours you’re not working.
Jumping right in to full-time work means you will have more hours, more patients and more experience. Honing your skills as a chiropractor is important, especially as a new graduate. If you are working part time, it may take longer to gain experience.
A Foot in the Door
If you otherwise really like the practice, starting part time could be the opening you need. Just make sure the hiring DC understands your goals are to work full time, if that’s the case. Hopefully he or she can tell you if that is a possibility.
It’s a popular phrase right now, but work/life balance is worth contemplating. One advantage to working part time is that you have time for other pursuits and interests. This could be volunteering, community involvement, hobbies, other business pursuits or spending time with family and friends. It could also include additional educational pursuits.
At this stage in your life, you may have started a family or are planning to. Many healthcare practitioners feel torn between taking care of children and the long hours a practice demands. Working part time can help immensely with this and other family obligations.
Doctors of chiropractic, like all doctors, should be mindful of burnout. The constant physical and professional demands of the job can get to be too much. If you work part-time and have the time and ability to focus on other things, it may alleviate this problem.
Definition of Part Time
Depending on the practice, part time may be more hours than you think. Ask the hiring DC what they are envisioning. If they are used to working 60 hours full time, their idea of part-time may differ from yours.
Working part time may affect time off and insurance. Ask how a part-time schedule will work. What about time off, sick days, etc.? Will it affect bonuses?
If you are working part time, make sure your malpractice insurance company knows so they can adjust your rates accordingly. You may be entitled to a part-time discount.
Ask For Advice
You have DC colleagues out there working various schedules. Ask the ones working part time for their thoughts – what do they like about it, what challenges does it create? Everyone’s situation is different, but it may provide some helpful insight before you decide one way or another.
Posted in Practice Structure