Details, Details…

This is sort of symposium-related, though I won’t tag it as such because it’s mostly of a personal nature.

The interview process for physicians is slow. It involves many moving parts and requires a significant investment on the part of employers to make sure they get the right person. Where My wife Clancy is working on a one-year contract and both she and the employer(s) wish to make it ongoing. This has been the case for several months. The job is peculiar in that it involves a state university, two county hospitals, and a private practice. So with that in mind, as well as the fact that it wouldn’t start until her current contract expires, it’s not surprising that it’s taken a while. Months, even.

But today, they have announced that they have the contract ready!

The thing is… we have never once heard anything about what compensation they’re offering. The only vague estimates we’ve heard range from “I don’t think we could pay off her student loans with that” to something that would have us dancing in the streets and buying a house (the second figure being a full 75% higher than the first). We have also heard no indication of what hours she might be expected to work.

The process, as extensive as it has been, forgot a few steps.

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13 thoughts on “Details, Details…

    • It is.

      And it reminds me of a hobby horse of mine. Discovery (if that’s the right word), in all its manifestations, is a really big problem here in the good ole USA. I’ve been in this business for a while, but … in the last few months I’ve been helping my wife and her partners start a new business and one of the things that is just astounding to me is that bids are completely non-transparent. We’ve received bids from plumbers, electricians, and HVAC outfits for the work entailed by the rebuild, and in each case I’ve specifically asked for a break down of price for each phase of the work required (since there were obviously separable sections as well as segments of work performed), and in each case I simple get a sum total for the price we have to pay. And in each case, when I compare labor hours to bill rate (including materials) I’m just blown away at the pricing. When I ask the contractors about their pricing they all say the same thing: computer program determines hours/materials and industry standard determines bill rate. I’m actually starting to get really pissed about this. ANd I’m in the business!

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    • I had forgotten this, but the same thing sort of happened when she got her current job. They flew her out here, had her meet everybody, and she had an offer by the time we flew home. It wasn’t until we got the letter that we knew how much she would be making, and that turned out not to even be the final number (which was, thankfully, higher).

      It might be that more aggressiveness is required on this front.

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  1. Just remember: Since the price hasn’t been agreed upon, she still has the right to negotiate; particularly if it’s not enough to both cover student loans and support family reasonably well (and I say this knowing that you’re happy with a relatively modest lifestyle). It’s likely cheaper for them to come up on their offer then it is to begin a new search.

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    • Oh, yeah, we can still negotiate. They’re creating the position for her, though, so some of the ordinary rules don’t apply. Though that they are creating the position for her is significant in and of itself. So there’s that!

      A part of me wants to say “We should poke around Maine and South Dakota” (two places we know about potential opportunities) to have a better reference point.

      The thought of moving again so soon is unbelievably daunting, though. That’s the leverage they have.

      But if we can’t make it work, we can’t make it work, and we’ll have some very tough discussions about it.

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      • Just remember that Negotiations are usually within a fine range.

        When the ex was offered a postion at an former employer, an employer that told her “the CEO said he will green light this project IF we hire you”, and she was told the salary range, I told her to go in with a pay requirement of slightly less than the max of the range. They were unwilling to go above 5k more than the bottom end. Some of that is the result of my ex not being a strong negotiator, but her starting salary did represent 30% more from her current job, so….

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      • Just saw this.

        My cousin is doing his residency with his fellow-doctor-girlfriend in Portland, Maine or thereabouts right now. (They were classmates and did the couple-gets-placed-together-geographically residency selection thing). They LOVE IT there. Just FYI. Don’t know which hospitals, but I can try to get any information I might be able to get iff’n you would want me to, .

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  2. A non-update. Still no idea on the specifics.

    I should make clear that I don’t actually think any of this is nefarious. Had her previous employer done this, we would be very suspicious. In this case, it’s the same employer that had her on a two week project only to find out that somebody else was already doing it and having a head start. So, not nefarious, even if aggravating.

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