Is this where we ARE??Recruiting Bonuses

  1. Hey All:

    Just a thought for ya'll. I live in the New Orleans, LA area. There are nursing recruiting bonuses popping up everywhere. My question is this....Why not just pay everyone like they should be paid (at least $40.00/hr) and be done with it? Put it in black and white, without all of the bonus for this shift, sign on bonus for coming to work at this place, we will pay for your whatever bonus and JUST PAY US THE MONEY WE DESERVE and STOP THE GIMMICKS!!..Like Laura Gasparis said, Plumbers make more than we do! Common, personal departments!! WAKE UP! and smell the revolution. My 2 cents from a MICU nurse! Tell me what you think..

    Chris
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  2. Poll: Nursing Bonus or Just Increase your Pay?

    • Yes, I want a bonus..it is like free money

      10.00% 3
    • No, I don't need any bonus or increased pay

      0% 0
    • Yes, I want my pay to increase and drop the drama of the bonuses

      90.00% 27
    30 Votes
  3. 14 Comments

  4. by   fergus51
    I admit to being fooled by the signing bonus. It does seem like free money and I am happy when it's offered.
  5. by   live4today
    I checked "increase the pay and stop the bonus drama". Bonuses are only offered to entice nurses to employ at the facility offering the bonus. Once those nurses who accept the bonus sign on, the same drama exists to fight for increase pay wages, better treatment of staff, lower patient/nurse ratios, better health benefits, a variety of shifts/half shifts/shared shifts offered, inhospital daycare for staff ROUND THE CLOCK...not just from 0600 to 1800 hours...and on and on. The real change will come when these all around conditions and factors improve across the board for nurses.
  6. by   chrisB
    The funny thing is....

    If hospitals paid their nurses well, they wouldn't HAVE to spend huge somes of money on agency nurses and PRN nurses. Their nurses would be clamoring to come to work! If you don't think that the hospitals aren't paying huge sums of money on agency nurses to fill their holes in their schedules....you would be SADLY mistaken. HUGE SUMS of MONEY!

    Think if you made $40.00/hr as your base pay...Would you be willing to show up for work everyday? And maybe...pull an extra shift every once in while when census increased?

    Believe it or not. We are not all Florence Nightengales. We do have to get out of bed every morning to pay the bills and feed the kids. I don't come to the hospital that I work at for the social and volunteer benefits. I come there to work.

    Chris, RN, CCRN
    MICU nurse for 12 years
  7. by   chrisB
    ok..to anyone who knows me personally..including SICU nurse...

    yes, I DO come to work to be social, but they are PAYING me to be SOCIAL there......LOL

    Had to clarify this....because they tell me that I talk a lot!
  8. by   Sleepyeyes
    The following is my letter to the editor of our local newspaper dealing with an article they published on recruitment bonuses:


    It's not the greatest idea put forth by one person that gets results, it's the simplest idea that many agree on....thus, we are all responsible for raising the public consciousness about our profession and this dangerous shortage.

    To that end, I wrote a letter to the editor in response to a an article on recruitment bonuses. (They did a nice job of editing too, by the way; here, the teacher shortage is covered very well, but the nursing shortage? no one knows diddly, and no one cares.)


    Conditions that chase nurses away
    Re: Nursing shortage leads to cutthroat recruiting, June 9.

    Instead of sign-on bonuses, why don't hospitals get to the root of the problem and offer realistic solutions? Many nurses are of the opinion that there is no nursing shortage. But because of poor working conditions and salaries, many nurses have left the bedside and are working in other areas of nursing. Briefly, here are the things that chased nurses away from where they're needed most:

    1. Salaries (especially in Florida) are terrible for nurses, though the cost of living is high.

    2. High patient-nurse ratios are dangerous to patients. Nurses don't want to harm their patients or lose their license to practice, so they "vote with their feet" by leaving the bedside.

    3. Some hospitals actually make nurses stay overtime or work shifts they weren't hired for. It's exhausting and dangerous. An exhausted nurse can make mistakes that can hurt or kill the patient, in addition to loss of licensure and having to live with tremendous guilt.

    4. Nursing has become very specialized. Some hospitals make nurses float to units they do not have adequate training in. For instance, a nurse specializing in medical-surgical should not be floated to labor and delivery and vice versa. Again, patient safety is at stake.

    5. Some hospitals pay agency nurses twice the salary that staff nurses get. So why should a nurse stay on staff? For far too long, nurses have been the victims in the cost-cutting wars, and have been made to feel that they are wrong if they demand a decent salary. Facilities continually whine that they can't afford to pay better. Yet units in hospitals all over the nation are being forced to close temporarily because of short-staffing nurses. So how much fiscal sense does it make to lose millions in revenue over a few thousand dollars more per nurse?

    6. Nurses as professionals aren't respected. Part of this is because the general public has no idea what nurses do. Nursing is a very demanding profession. Unlike teachers, we work all the holidays, all the shifts, year-round, and in some dangerous conditions.

    Nurses are legally and morally responsible for the total care of their patients. Facility policy may be detrimental, the doctor might not care, but it's our job to get that patient effective, timely, appropriate care.

    This is not about individual facilities; this is a profession-wide problem. But it can be rectified with a couple of simple actions. One is to raise our pay. I challenge hospitals and nursing homes in the area to raise their base salaries for nurses to $4 more an hour and offer attractive benefits and cost of living adjustments. Then watch the "shortage" disappear.
  9. by   chrisB
    Excellent sleepyeyes...I will do the same with our local papers. Everyone needs to send one to their local paper. I listened to a show on NPR (national public radio) about the nursing shortage and you are right...no one understands what nurses do in the first place, much less care about the shortage....
  10. by   Norbert Holz
    Please put a choice that pays a good (no excessive strings) sign on and a good salary. The pay should be $40/hr (base) with a sign on to attract the Nurse!
  11. by   SICU Queen
    Just to clarify that Chris B LIVES to come to work. It's where all of her friends are

    One of the nurses I work with figured out that the $10000. sign on bonus that is being offered by a local hospital for a two year commitment comes out to abut $2.40 more an hour. Why not just pay us more?

    I'm just sick to death of talking about it over and over. It's the same old crap. $hitty staffing, $hitty pay, and $hitty (literally) patients who don't appreciate what we do to keep them alive, and even more so their families. We're just glorified pill poppers and a$$ wipers.

    I want to be a plumber. At least I'll get paid what it's worth to dig in $hit.:stone
  12. by   SandyLV
    Great Idea Sleepyeyes....
    Would it be okay to transcribe your letter to send it to our local newspapers and other media???
    I loved everything about it.....
    Sandy
  13. by   fedupnurse
    This shortage would be abolished quickly if hospital execs did two simple things: Improve working conditions by staffing by the number of available beds rather than average daily census and by paying us what they are paying Agency nurses. It would still be cheaper tha paying the Agency and the nurse! Sign on bonuses do absolutely nothing to foster retainment of staff. Due to low hourly wages, people develop a take the money and run as soon as the bonus is paid in full. The executives and their consultants made this mess and now it is time for them to clean it up!
  14. by   mattsmom81
    These sign on bonuses attract people who stay the required year, collect their money, and go on to the next 'high bonus' hospital in the area.

    The regulars at my last hospital pitched a fit last year and FINALLY we got a retention bonus and raise. BUT we still are not paid what the larger hospitals in the area pay for critical care nurses.
  15. by   NannaNurse
    Well....I DID take a sign-on bonus. I will get $7500. paid out over 3 years. I don't have to stay there and I don't have to pay any back if I leave early.
    I also get good benefits, good working conditions, great co-workers.....so far and better opportunity to utilize my nursing skills.
    I worked LTC for......TOO LONG....yes, I took a pay cut, about $0.50 an hour. Still not making what I think I should, but not all places pay $15 to $40 an hour. Boy we would surly NOT have a problem if we had that kind of pay. We would also be out 'fighting' for jobs as there would be 'too many' nurses....think about the reverse situation.
    I don't feel 'guilty' about taking the bonus....I actually didn't learn about it until the interview. Hey, if they offer it, I'll take it. They also paid off all of my outstanding student loans and will pay my tuition each semester...
    Not everywhere is going to be our 'dream' job and we will never be paid what we are worth...not enough money in the world for that. Yes, we work to be paid, but to me, that is not all the reason that I go to work each week.

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