Friday, February 6, 2004

Alliance workers may get bonuses



By Tim Bonfield
The Cincinnati Enquirer

The region's second-largest employer - the Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati - announced plans to begin paying bonuses into employee retirement accounts when the system achieves key financial goals.

The Health Alliance, which employs about 13,000 people at six area hospitals and other services, has introduced a goal-sharing program called "Success of Associates - Recognition."

The plan calls for allocating 20 percent of any surplus over the Health Alliance's operating budget into the program. For employees who qualify, the Health Alliance could make a distribution of up to 3 percent of an employee's annual base pay to a 401(k) retirement savings plan.

The first payouts would be made in early December, based on how the Health Alliance fares in fiscal 2004, which ends June 30.

In theory, a person earning $40,000 a year could get a bonus of up to $1,200. The Health Alliance expects to exceed its budget goals, but it is too early to specify how much will be paid in bonuses.

"I feel that it's important that our employees are recognized and rewarded for their hard work and dedication," said Ken Hanover, Health Alliance chief executive.

A "profit-sharing" arrangement is unusual for a non-profit organization, but not unheard of, Hanover said.

Qualification requirements include being on staff as of Dec. 31 and working at least 1,000 hours.

E-mail tbonfield@enquirer.com




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