New Grad sign-on bonus negotiation

  1. I am looking for a new grad residency in Seattle and I haven't seen any sign-on bonuses advertised here. Has anyone heard of new grads negotiating for them when they aren't advertised? My best friend sells real estate and she thinks I'm nuts for not trying.
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  2. 18 Comments

  3. by   emily_mom
    I've never heard of negotiating for a bonus if they're not advertising. Maybe they don't believe in them (some hospitals don't) or can't afford to give them. Maybe they aren't in a severe shortage like in other places. All the hospitals around here that offer them, advertise them. There is only one that doesn't and falls into the above reasons.

    I would call HR and ask if they offer anything (anonymously), but I wouldn't go in and demand or ask for one at an interview.
  4. by   delirium
    I agree.

    This is what I did: I attended a few hospital open houses, I went to the job fair at my school, and I sent out my CV and a cover letter to area hospitals that I was interested in. I received immediate call backs and generally you can glean any information you're looking for from the nurse recruiter over the phone.

    Unless of course its one of those hospitals who won't disclose any wage/recruitment bonus information until interview.
  5. by   sjoe
    From what I have seen, new grads have little clout with which to negotiate, because they are inexperienced and need a lot of training. Many hospitals do not even hire new grads, much less provide special programs for them, MUCH LESS pay them a bonus.

    But good luck.

    (Did your real estate friend demand, and get, a bonus on her first job with a realtor or working in real estate? I thought not.)
    Last edit by sjoe on Mar 26, '03
  6. by   litepath
    My best friend sells real estate and she thinks I'm nuts for not trying.

    Makes sense to me if you're willing to accept a no for the bonus and a no for a position, probably at nearly the same time.

    I recently visited the city where I'm moving to to be interviewed by two differing facilities. I don't think either were offering a bonus, however one of them was offering to pay moving expenses and had money available for other such things. But I couldn't accept a bonus or a position from them, because I'm sure I would've been unhappy there. So, the facility that i'm signing with is the one that had a huge bonus~~Great People~~considering that I'm at the beginning of my nursing career, and not the end of it, kinda' reminds me of that
    Master Card commercial:
    Moving expenses-$2000.00
    Sign on bonus- $5000.00
    Great People- Priceless~~

    ~~~~~Some things money cannot buy~~~For everything else...

    Good Luck.

    ps: some grads in my class have received a sign on bonus.
  7. by   dynamicfigure
    I have found the Seattle nursing situation to be a bit different than the rest of the nation. The HR departments in that neck of the woods are unable to fill all their needs, but at the same time, they are not willing to give much incentive to start working there either. I have not found a single hospital over there that is offering a sign-on. LTC may be a bit diffrent story if you want to go that direction.
  8. by   sunnybrook83
    Rather than negotiate a sign on bonus, I'd try to negotiate higher wages- it'll pay off in the long run, and if you don't like the place you don't need to worry about paying back the bonus!!!
  9. by   Rapheal
    Every hospital I was offered a job with(except one ) offered a sign on bonus of at least 2 grand. The job I chose did not offer a sign on bonus but is paying me almost 3 grand for education reimbursment. I did not ask about any bonuses until I was offered the job. Hope this helps.
  10. by   New CCU RN
    After you are offered the position, I'd try and negotiate wages and a sign on bonus... it is worth a try.

    I definately do not agree that new grads aren't getting them... there are many programs that are catered to new graduates...we are in a nursing shortage here.

    The highest sign on bonus I was offered was 10,000. The pay rate is 22.50 and hr. This was at a large teaching facility.

    Due to personal reasons, I decided to relocate to Virginia from New England, and so my wages and sign on bonus did decrease. However, the shift dif's at my hosp make up for the lowered wages. I am actually making more doing nights down here than I would have doing nights in NE with a much higher cost of living!!!!

    Sunnybrook did make a really good point though..... try and increase your hourly wage....it will over time make a much bigger difference esp considering that your bonus will be taxed big time... expect to get about half of what you were offered after the IRS takes its share.
  11. by   Shell7280
    I live in Texas, and I don't know any hospitals in the area that don't offer sign on bonus' and many offer relocation pay too. I got $4000 as a sign on bonus as a new grad plus $1500 when i passed boards. But I don't think asking for one is going to get you one unless they already offer it there.
  12. by   oge
    UCLA is offering pityful 1500 for relocation .
  13. by   emily_mom
    We've talked about this before here, but do you ever wonder why some places are offering huge sign-ons? Why don't they improve working conditions? They'd have nurses beating down the door!

    I was offered $10,000 for a three year commitment (tax free), but turned it down before signing the papers. Why? They don't have a school in their town that feeds them, so they are chronically understaffed.

    Instead, I decided to stay at my present job (because I know I like it). I will get $1000 at graduation and $1000 after 1 year. But, I know the working conditions, and I like what I see. Plus, I'll start at a higher wage b/c I'm working there now, so that huge sign on won't mean much in the long run.

    Not all hospitals are created equal, and that's why no bonuses are either. Research anything before you sign on the dotted line.
  14. by   montroyal
    Originally posted by sitterwoman
    I am looking for a new grad residency in Seattle and I haven't seen any sign-on bonuses advertised here. Has anyone heard of new grads negotiating for them when they aren't advertised? My best friend sells real estate and she thinks I'm nuts for not trying.

    There are very few hospitals anywere in the US that offers true sign on bonus. A true sign on bonus comes with no strings attached(ie. time comitment). Alot of hospitals offer retention bonuses that they try to pass off as a sign on bonus. " We'll give you $2000.00 but you have to stay for a year or two, if you leave you must pay us back". Take this as your first warning sign that management will play games with you! Also, remember that bonuses are taxed at 40% for federal income tax. You are better off negotiating a higher salery which will give you alot more money in your pocket in the long run. A full time nurse works 2000 hours a year. A salary increase of a dollar or two will have you earning more money than that falsely advertised sign on bonus can give you. Any nurse who accepts the initial salary offer without negotiating for a higher one probably pays sticker price for a new car also.

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