Benchmarking Tool

People performing benchmarking tasks

The new PPS KPI benchmarking program is available to the first 500 PPS members who apply.

By Mike Horsfield, PT, MBA

Measuring, benchmarking, and responding to key performance indicators (KPIs) are essential to the long-term success of any business.

In the increasingly complex and competitive marketplace of physical therapy, it is crucial that private practitioners are intentional about what they measure and that they understand data’s importance in analyzing clinic performance. The days of quantifying success by the balance in our company checkbooks are behind us. It is time that we begin utilizing our clinical outcome mindset to start making data-driven decisions about our businesses.

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are quantifiable measures of an activity critical to the success of an organization. These indicators are the vital signs of an organization and become the focus of performance improvement initiatives. Goals for KPIs can be directional (increase/decrease) and/or can be benchmarked against best practices in a particular industry. Effective benchmarking within an industry requires consensus about which KPIs are important, how they are defined, and who will administer. Utilizing a secure third-party administrator to collect, blind, scrub, and provide reporting is essential to ensuring the integrity of the data collected and avoiding any potential conflicts of interest.

In 2016, as part of the Private Practice Section (PPS) Peer2Peer NetWorks program, PPS developed a method for collecting and benchmarking key performance indicators. Peer2Peer NetWorks members were given exclusive access to input data into the newly developed KPI Benchmarking Survey for the first two years in order to ensure the criteria in the previous paragraph were met. Last year, 106 Peer2Peer members each successfully contributed 23 data points from 2017 for analysis.

PPS is excited to announce that, beginning in 2019, KPI Benchmarking will be available to the first 500 PPS members who apply. Participants in this initial offering will input data from their 2018 calendar year. KPIs benchmarked include:

  • Number of visits per new patient
  • Arrival rate
  • Visits per full-time equivalent employees (FTEs)
  • Cost per visit
  • Revenue per visit
  • Net income

The information shared in the survey is collected and managed by Vault Consulting, a data analytics company that protects and blinds the information. All participants will receive a detailed individual report as well as an aggregate report that breaks down the metrics by practice size, region of the country, and care model. Data collection will begin in February 2019, and final reports will be distributed to participants in mid-April 2019.

Given the need to have “like data” for useful comparisons, this initial offering is for members where the majority of their care is delivered in a brick and mortar clinic and insurance is the primary mode of payment. Specialty practices (e.g., pediatrics, women’s health) that meet the same criteria are welcome to participate.

Understanding what drives business success helps crystallize the wonder and disarm the worry that occupies too much of an entrepreneur’s time. Knowing the answer to “How is your business doing?” is liberating. KPI Benchmarking will answer that question for you, and the many resources of PPS will help you change that answer if you so desire.


Mike Horsfield, PT, MBA, is the chief executive officer of Rock Valley Physical Therapy in Davenport, Iowa. He can be reached at

Copyright © 2018, Private Practice Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. All Rights Reserved.

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