SpikeDaCat

Signing Bonus - what to ask for?

9 posts in this topic

Ok - long post. Sorry.  Here's the summary if you don't want to read it all: How much of a signing bonus is reasonable to ask for?  Is $10k over the top?

 

And the long version: I'm in the process of interviewing for a new position at an interventional pain management practice (not a pill factory - they wean people off).  I have 5 years' experience, mostly in FP/UC, so I know my way around the exam room and EMRs, and am totally comfortable in the PA role.  

 

The odds of me receiving an offer are really good - they're expanding the practice and hiring 3-4 more PAs at once, and I've been invited to do the 2nd (working) interview on Tuesday.  They haven't interviewed tons of candidates, and per the recruiter, they really liked me.  :)

 

Since I haven't received an offer yet, we haven't had any negotiations, but here's what was advertised (in a nutshell):

$85k for the first 3 months, then $95k (which is more than the $40 per hour I'm making now)

Quarterly productivity bonuses (don't currently get that)

$50k loan repayment after 2 years (currently in a $30k/2y agreement... ish)

Full medical/dental/retirement benefits (already have that)

No call whatsoever (I take frequent call. I HATE HATE HATE call)

About 20 patients per day (I currently do 24-30)

Signing bonus available (never had that before)

 

This job is about 35 miles from where I am now, but because it's in a downtown/urban area, the commute there and back is really nasty.  Since I also hate long commutes and being stuck in rush hour traffic both directions, I'd want to move much closer.  I am also hoping to buy a home soon.

 

At my current job, I'm on the front end of a $30k loan repayment agreement.  Nothing has been disbursed yet, and I don't have a formal employment contract, so I could still walk without a penalty.  The only thing that makes that hard is that I would be receiving the first disbursement of $15,000 this month.  If I change jobs, I'm effectively walking away from $15k.  That really stings.  Long term, this job is significantly better financially, but short term, it isn't.  At all.

 

In negotiations, would it be reasonable for me to tell the potential employer this, and request a $10k signing bonus to offset that loss?  I'd use basically all of it it to help with a down payment and moving costs.  Do you think that would be offensive to the employer?  I'm paranoid of seeming to greedy and not getting the job because I asked for too much.  Should I not tell them why I want it and just ask for it?

 

Thoughts? 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The disbursement bonus is for the loan repayment and something you'd have to give back if you left before 2 years, correct? Since they have a better loan repayment program in addition to a bonus structure, I don't know if they would do it based on that alone. Maybe you can ask for the bonus for relocation assistance, ask for $15K and settle for the $10K when they negotiate. Make sure you get concrete details about the bonus structure by the way.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The disbursement bonus is for the loan repayment and something you'd have to give back if you left before 2 years, correct? Since they have a better loan repayment program in addition to a bonus structure, I don't know if they would do it based on that alone. Maybe you can ask for the bonus for relocation assistance, ask for $15K and settle for the $10K when they negotiate. Make sure you get concrete details about the bonus structure by the way.

Thank you.  

 

You are correct - In order for me to receive the $15k disbursement (which can ONLY go to student loans) from my current job, I need to submit a contract that says I will stay there until June 2018.... or I would have to repay 150% of what was disbursed.  They're dead serious.

 

The new job's loan repayment is most likely one lump sum of $50k after I have been there for 2 years.  I doubt I would see any of it sooner.  The clinic is owned by a Native American tribe, and I believe it's a government program for that.

 

I also am really curious about the quarterly bonuses.  I am extremely efficient, but have excellent bedside manner and great documentation, so I will have no problem getting the expected 80 visits per week and billing well for them.  If the bonuses are to the tune of a few thousand dollars each quarter, then not getting big loan repayment disbursements sooner is ok as long as I can get something up front for relocation.

 

You really think I could ask for $15k relocation?  That seems like a lot.  I mean, it would be wonderful, but wow.  I don't think they need me THAT desperately...

 

One thing I do plan to negotiate is the 3 month period of lower pay.  I'm going to push for only 1 month because I'm a very fast learner and will not have the same learning curve a new grad would.  At my current job, I was up to speed within a few weeks... seeing 30 per day.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I understand WHY you want to relocate, but you may have a hard time labeling your sign on bonus as a relocation assistance purely because of how 'close' you already live.  Certainly you can ask.  Just be prepared for some strange looks if you say you need money to relocate when you technically are in a commutable range.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

a sign-on bonus is not a foregone conclusion. I have never gotten one, although I have gone relocation covered. sign-on bonuses are typically only given for hard to fill jobs that have set empty for a while or must be filled asap. if they have other applicants, they may not offer one at all. just sayin...

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

commute will kill you....

 

If you are walking from a loan repayment job - ask for the same and explain that this will be your signing bonus

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, after expressing my deep interest in joining their group, it sounds like it would be best to inform them that a job change means walking away from $15k this month, then ask for that $15k as a signing bonus while also mentioning my intention to relocate... (with no real expectation that I will actually receive any kind of a signing/relocation bonus, especially not the entire $15,000.)

 

Negotiations are not my favorite thing.  *sigh*  But they're important.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good luck! Tell us how it goes. The worst that can happen is they can say no. If they refuse to hire you because you ask, I guarantee it's a good thing you never worked there.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Negotiation hater here also...since a signing bonus is listed there and thus on the table...maybe tell them what you are walking away from ($15k) and let them throw something out there.  If I was them, I might be thinking I'm getting you cheap at $10k...they say the first person who says a number wins...let us know how it goes.

 

A more pressing issue is that disbursement this month.  Pretty sure you need to stop or delay that...

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now