How to decide next step in career

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RobLyons
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How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

Hi all,

I'm 41 with a wife and 2 kids and have been in my current bedside healthcare position for 10 years. I'm very in demand. My financial house is in order with only debt being mortgage and small HELOC. My current employer has not kept up with the market value for my position (based on market evaluation) and just recently reneged on a promised 5% market adjustment this year. This has lead me to explore my options. First, I wish there was a way to stay and obtain a fair compensation increase. My department as a whole has attempted multiple times to get the pay scale fixed and obtain the promised market adjustment to no avail. Multiple emails, calls, and meetings over the past 2 months have lead to no action. We are not union. Unless anyone has any other ideas, I think we have exhausted all avenues here.

So moving forward, I would rank my priorities in my career as
#1. Compensation
#2. benefits / healthcare Edit: (healthcare is a close 2nd, as I carry the insurance for the family, kids are frequent flyers)
#3 work conditions and autonomy
#4 commute.

So here's my 3 options

The first option is to stay at my current employer. The compensation is lower, but we can check off # 2 - #4 as all being excellent. We receive a good amount of paid time off of around 6-8 weeks a year. Also, I'm tenured, well respected and comfortable in my position. But again, not satisfied with the compensation nor the actions of upper management / executives.

The second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy. I also have to obtain and maintain all records on my own (BLS, ACLS, PALS certification, maintain all vaccinations etc).

Edit -
Travel pay rates are always changing.
Job offers and pay are less in the summer
Health care varies from travel company to company, and ends 2 weeks after each contract (most contracts are 6-13 weeks) unless I re sign.
The consensus is that travel is a younger person's industry based on the health care mentioned above and instability (moving from place to place)

I would travel locally, so the instability wouldn't exist beyond me driving to a new hospital every 13 weeks.

The third option is moving to another local hospital. Pros are slightly higher income, maybe 10-15% more, (EDIT - recent ball park offer is 20% more) good benefits, similar or slightly less paid time off, but the work conditions are unknown and the commute isn't as good as my current employer.


How does one decide how or when to make this type of decision? Thanks all.
Last edited by RobLyons on Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:55 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Mr. Buzzkill
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by Mr. Buzzkill »

There’s no single way of deciding such things. It depends on your personal priorities which you have explicitly outlined.

If they truly reflect your values and desires then your decision is easy. Mo’ money.

But in reality it’s all a trade off. Will more money make you happier? Or will it merely reduce the insecurities arising from knowing that others make more cash income?

I had parallel dilemma in accepting my current job. I could have taken a job at another employer for 30 percent more cash (after performance bonuses) plus equity options that might never pay off, but with fewer benefits, less time off, much more stress and risk and long commute to an office.

I opted for job with average cash income for my skills and experience, ESPP instead of options, better benefits, no commute (permanent remote), and stable profitable employer. More money would not make me happier at this stage of my life and certainly not with the downsides of the job that I rejected.

Not making enough for your needs and goals can make you unhappy but after a certain point, more money won’t make you happier while other things like more time off might.
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markjk
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by markjk »

OP, I like that you ranked your priorities. From my experience, you might want to reconsider pay as your #1 priority. I suspect you've worked in a relatively good environment with decent work/life balance. I say that because if you ever experienced otherwise, I suspect pay would not be your #1 priority. I could be wrong of course.

In general, if you prioritize compensation but land in a situation with poor work/life balance (especially with kids) or you hate going to work everyday due to the environment, it won't matter how much you make. You will most likely be miserable.

With that said, there is nothing wrong with dusting off the resume and looking for a better opportunity with more pay. It seems you've done all of your homework.

The answer to your question of "How does one decide ..." is it depends. This is a truly personal question and you will get many opinions. It depends on what is most important to you. Some would stay at the current job for the stability. Some would take the huge pay increase but potential work/life balance risk of the travel position. Some would give the third option a try as the extra 10 - 15% and good benefits is enough compensation to them for the risk of unknown working conditions.

What matters to you most and how would you balance all of the trade-offs? I think that is the key question.
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by BV3273 »

I just made a similar choice and left my previous employer.

I had a great manager and team, but the offer I received from another company was almost a 30% increase from my previous role. Compensation was number 1 for me also. I spoke with my manager about the offer and he went to his manager & HR. They didn’t even counter since they are tight on funds (might be a similar situation at your current employer).

I took the new offer and did not burn any bridges in case I have a need to go back to my old employer. I explained to my boss that it was purely a business decision and he understood that. I have been in my new position for a month now and it has been quite an experience LOL. Change is hard, but I am learning quickly. I like the challenge that the new job has brought me. There was a short time where I thought to myself I should have just stayed and made less money, but ultimately I made my decision and I am going to see it through. I like my new position and I like my new paychecks even more.

I don’t like that your current employer promised and increase then reneged. What’s the deal with that? Did they give you a reason for not delivering on what they said they would?

All I can say is do your due diligence on the new opportunities and speak with your family about potential changes that can impact them if you decide to leave. And one last thing, you need to Interview the people that are interviewing you. Ask the tough questions. This tactic can weed out the good from the bad quite easily and should make your decision even easier if you decide to leave.
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JoeRetire
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by JoeRetire »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am The first option is to stay at my current employer. The compensation is lower, but we can check off # 2 - #4 as all being excellent. We receive a good amount of paid time off of around 6-8 weeks a year. Also, I'm tenured, well respected and comfortable in my position. But again, not satisfied with the compensation nor the actions of upper management / executives.

The second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.

The third option is moving to another local hospital. Pros are slightly higher income, maybe 10-15% more, good benefits, similar or slightly less paid time off, but the work conditions are unknown and the commute isn't as good as my current employer.

How does one decide how or when to make this type of decision?
You decide your priorities and act on them. Like all decisions.

Every decision has tradeoffs.

If you want to take it easy, just stay where you are.
If you want the most income, take the second option.
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by stoptothink »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 amThe second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.
My SIL took a traveling position in the spring of '20. The money is great, but the work/life balance, autonomy, and necessity to move regularly (4 times in 2yrs, and it would have been a 5th but she decided to stay in a hotel during the week instead) has been incredibly hard on her family. Not to get into it, but the situation IMO has caused irreparable harm to my nieces and it must be incredibly hard for SIL too. My brother worked in oil & gas for 15yrs; he was away from his family for 6 -months a year - this has been way harder on the girls than that. Even if dad was away, at least they weren't having to constantly move.

The money is certainly enticing (SIL has more than tripled her income), but I don't think this is a viable option if you have a family. I also wonder how long this nurse shortage will last.
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by rjbraun »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.
It sounds like a difficult situation, I can appreciate feeling frustrated.

Are you adequately valuing the pension you seem to have with your current position? This is a form of compensation (assuming the pension will be "money good" when you retire, etc.), so I think it's important to reflect that when evaluating an annual salary of x% more in a new job but with inferior benefits, such as no pension.

Admittedly, the pension benefits pay out in the future and don't help you to meet your daily expenses today. But, it's still a distinction worth considering, in my opinion.
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RobLyons
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

Mr. Buzzkill wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:41 am
But in reality it’s all a trade off. Will more money make you happier? Or will it merely reduce the insecurities arising from knowing that others make more cash income?

Not making enough for your needs and goals can make you unhappy but after a certain point, more money won’t make you happier while other things like more time off might.
Less about reducing insecurities and more about being paid what my position is worth. Also, the money would help greatly in several ways, IE saving for kids college, pay off the HELOC quicker, build the EF, start a rainy day fund for wife's future vehicle (hers is almost 9 years old).


markjk wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 4:48 am OP, I like that you ranked your priorities. From my experience, you might want to reconsider pay as your #1 priority. I suspect you've worked in a relatively good environment with decent work/life balance. I say that because if you ever experienced otherwise, I suspect pay would not be your #1 priority. I could be wrong of course.

In general, if you prioritize compensation but land in a situation with poor work/life balance (especially with kids) or you hate going to work everyday due to the environment, it won't matter how much you make. You will most likely be miserable.

What matters to you most and how would you balance all of the trade-offs? I think that is the key question.

The work life balance is big. The travel contracts are specified beforehand, and are usually 3 - 12 hour shifts. So I wouldn't be working much more, although I have taken a lot of paid time off this year for kids activities and I wouldn't be able to if I was traveling.

rjbraun wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 9:02 am
RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.
It sounds like a difficult situation, I can appreciate feeling frustrated.

Are you adequately valuing the pension you seem to have with your current position? This is a form of compensation (assuming the pension will be "money good" when you retire, etc.), so I think it's important to reflect that when evaluating an annual salary of x% more in a new job but with inferior benefits, such as no pension.

Admittedly, the pension benefits pay out in the future and don't help you to meet your daily expenses today. But, it's still a distinction worth considering, in my opinion.


The pension is an absolute consideration. Currently it's not a make or break but I understand compound interest and by the time I retire it should be close to $800k vs travel would triple that. However, I can't assume the travel pay will remain the same forever. These are short contracts with fluctuating pay. The pandemic pay, for example, would've made me a millionaire in 2-3 years but we're not there right now. Thanks for your input.
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by KlangFool »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:15 pm
Less about reducing insecurities and more about being paid what my position is worth. Also, the money would help greatly in several ways, IE saving for kids college, pay off the HELOC quicker, build the EF, start a rainy day fund for wife's future vehicle (hers is almost 9 years old).

RobLyons,

I am going to play devil advocate here. I believe that you are angry and emotional and you have a right to feel that. From a strictly financial point of view, the 5% to 15% increase is not going to do that much for you. If you disagree, please show us your calculation.

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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by BolderBoy »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am The second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.
Can you take a travel position and remain in your local community (ie, still live at home?) For example, there are quite a few nurses along the Colorado Front Range who do this so they can live at home still.

I'll wager if you take a travel position and are away from your family for long periods of time, things are going to go south pretty quickly.

What line of work are you in?
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RobLyons
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

KlangFool wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:23 pm
RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:15 pm
Less about reducing insecurities and more about being paid what my position is worth. Also, the money would help greatly in several ways, IE saving for kids college, pay off the HELOC quicker, build the EF, start a rainy day fund for wife's future vehicle (hers is almost 9 years old).

RobLyons,

I am going to play devil advocate here. I believe that you are angry and emotional and you have a right to feel that. From a strictly financial point of view, the 5% to 15% increase is not going to do that much for you. If you disagree, please show us your calculation.

KlangFool

Not sure if I made a typo, or if you misread, but the pay difference is 10-15% if I leave and go to another local hospital. I believe 2 of the 3 currently offer a $5k - $10k sign on bonus. (My current employer also offers the same for new staff). The travel gig is currently 2-3x my current income. Now is considered the slow season. At it's peak, travel paid 5.5x my salary in 2020 - 2021. Hope that clears things up.
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RobLyons
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

BolderBoy wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 2:03 pm
RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am The second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.
Can you take a travel position and remain in your local community (ie, still live at home?) For example, there are quite a few nurses along the Colorado Front Range who do this so they can live at home still.

I'll wager if you take a travel position and are away from your family for long periods of time, things are going to go south pretty quickly.

What line of work are you in?

Yes, that would be my plan. Take local travel contracts. If they are > 50 miles from my home, there's a large non taxable stipend. If not, the pay is still at least 50% more but this could always go south (or north!). The biggest thing holding me back is the healthcare. High deductibles. Our kids are always at the doctor/urgent care and wife is going through dental work.
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KlangFool
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by KlangFool »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 5:40 pm
KlangFool wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:23 pm
RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:15 pm
Less about reducing insecurities and more about being paid what my position is worth. Also, the money would help greatly in several ways, IE saving for kids college, pay off the HELOC quicker, build the EF, start a rainy day fund for wife's future vehicle (hers is almost 9 years old).

RobLyons,

I am going to play devil advocate here. I believe that you are angry and emotional and you have a right to feel that. From a strictly financial point of view, the 5% to 15% increase is not going to do that much for you. If you disagree, please show us your calculation.

KlangFool

Not sure if I made a typo, or if you misread, but the pay difference is 10-15% if I leave and go to another local hospital. I believe 2 of the 3 currently offer a $5k - $10k sign on bonus. (My current employer also offers the same for new staff). The travel gig is currently 2-3x my current income. Now is considered the slow season. At it's peak, travel paid 5.5x my salary in 2020 - 2021. Hope that clears things up.
RobLyons,

What is the net after-tax income? After paying taxes, the difference may not be as much.

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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by CleverFox »

Hey Rob,

I understand getting a bit antsy when they've broken a promise, essentially.

What I do in these situations is to perform a weighted grading matrix. This has helped me make some significant decisions in my life, and quantify the options for a good comparison.

Take each of your priorities, and give them a weight out of 100%. For example purposes, I've taken a stab. In your case, you may have one that's 60% and the rest are only 12.5%... it's up to you!

1. Compensation (40%)
2. Benefits (30%)
3. Work Conditions & Autonomy (20%)
4. Commute (10%)
= ALL MUST EQUAL 100% IN TOTAL

So then you take these, put them in a nice little grid and then "rate" each of your options against each criterium.

For example:

Your Ratings:
1 - Dismal, basically should be a zero
2
3 - Neutral
4
5 - BEST, MOST AMAZING, MAX POINTS!


Staying:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (2) = .8
Benefits (.3) x Rating (3) = .9
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (4) = .8
Commute (.1) x Rating (5) = .5
Total score for staying = .8+.9+.8+.5 = 3 total score


Traveling:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (5) = 2.0
Benefits (.3) x Rating (2) = .6
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (3) = .6
Commute (.1) x Rating (1) = .1
Total score for staying = 2.0+.6+.6+.1 = 3.3 total score


Other Local Hospital:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (4) = 1.6
Benefits (.3) x Rating (3) = .9
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (3) = .6
Commute (.1) x Rating (2) = .2
Total score for staying = 1.6 + .9 + .6 + .2 = 3.3 total score

With these weights/criterium, I can see that either option is better than staying at my current employer. If you do this with your own weights/ratings, you'll see how you feel and have a way to mathematically compare your options.

Best of luck!
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by rjbraun »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 5:43 pm Yes, that would be my plan. Take local travel contracts. If they are > 50 miles from my home, there's a large non taxable stipend. If not, the pay is still at least 50% more but this could always go south (or north!). The biggest thing holding me back is the healthcare. High deductibles. Our kids are always at the doctor/urgent care and wife is going through dental work.
I'm not familiar with how local travel contracts work, but some things I would want to consider going that route would be:

The duration of a contract. I guess if the pay is attractive and can be locked in for some period of time, that would seem to provide some comfort / security. Of course, if the market rate goes higher, then presumably you miss out on that. Also, if you decide you don't like the job, I guess there's no way to break the contract.

Good healthcare benefits seem to be key for your family. Unless you already know the answer, I would encourage you to check beforehand how the healthcare benefits work. For example, is there a waiting period for enrollment, will the annual deductible reset with each new travel contract, will the providers / insurance and terms change (potentially) with a new contract, etc. If even some of these considerations may apply, that would seem to be a pain especially if your family is a heavy user and each time your policy changes you need to learn and apply a new set of benefit terms.

Finally, I wonder if there's any hope your current employer gets its act together. If you were to leave and then your current employer finally implements the pay raises they should have been doing, it would be unfortunate to miss out on those. If you were to leave and return (probably the last thing on your mind now, I'm sure) it would be nice if you could pick up your benefits (i.e., pension service, any seniority tied to vacation benefits) where you had left off.
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by chassis »

RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am Hi all,

I'm 41 with a wife and 2 kids and have been in my current bedside healthcare position for 10 years. I'm very in demand. My financial house is in order with only debt being mortgage and small HELOC. My current employer has not kept up with the market value for my position (based on market evaluation) and just recently reneged on a promised 5% market adjustment this year. This has lead me to explore my options. First, I wish there was a way to stay and obtain a fair compensation increase. My department as a whole has attempted multiple times to get the pay scale fixed and obtain the promised market adjustment to no avail. Multiple emails, calls, and meetings over the past 2 months have lead to no action. We are not union. Unless anyone has any other ideas, I think we have exhausted all avenues here.

So moving forward, I would rank my priorities in my career as
#1. Compensation
#2. benefits / healthcare Edit: (healthcare is a close 2nd, as I carry the insurance for the family, kids are frequent flyers)
#3 work conditions and autonomy
#4 commute.

So here's my 3 options

The first option is to stay at my current employer. The compensation is lower, but we can check off # 2 - #4 as all being excellent. We receive a good amount of paid time off of around 6-8 weeks a year. Also, I'm tenured, well respected and comfortable in my position. But again, not satisfied with the compensation nor the actions of upper management / executives.

The second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.

The third option is moving to another local hospital. Pros are slightly higher income, maybe 10-15% more, good benefits, similar or slightly less paid time off, but the work conditions are unknown and the commute isn't as good as my current employer.


How does one decide how or when to make this type of decision? Thanks all.
You have mentioned money/compensation multiple times. Change jobs and earn more money.
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by cncm »

I would not change employers for a 10-15% increase in pay, especially if you otherwise like your current job. But for 4-5x more, I would do it, as long as it doesn't take too much time away from family (i.e. if you're going to be working/traveling 100hrs/week, then I'd say it's not worth it).

Another option is if you get a competing offer, your current employer might try to match it or at least significantly increase your pay to try make you stay. What would you do then?
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RobLyons
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

cncm wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:32 am I would not change employers for a 10-15% increase in pay, especially if you otherwise like your current job. But for 4-5x more, I would do it, as long as it doesn't take too much time away from family (i.e. if you're going to be working/traveling 100hrs/week, then I'd say it's not worth it).

Another option is if you get a competing offer, your current employer might try to match it or at least significantly increase your pay to try make you stay. What would you do then?


My employer does not match offers. I just edited post, as I was provided a ball park estimate from another hospital which is 25% more, or 20% more after our 5% market adjustment, if we ever receive that. I'd have to interview to get more info, evaluate autonomy/work environment and commute.
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RobLyons
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

chassis wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 10:20 pm
RobLyons wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 12:21 am Hi all,

I'm 41 with a wife and 2 kids and have been in my current bedside healthcare position for 10 years. I'm very in demand. My financial house is in order with only debt being mortgage and small HELOC. My current employer has not kept up with the market value for my position (based on market evaluation) and just recently reneged on a promised 5% market adjustment this year. This has lead me to explore my options. First, I wish there was a way to stay and obtain a fair compensation increase. My department as a whole has attempted multiple times to get the pay scale fixed and obtain the promised market adjustment to no avail. Multiple emails, calls, and meetings over the past 2 months have lead to no action. We are not union. Unless anyone has any other ideas, I think we have exhausted all avenues here.

So moving forward, I would rank my priorities in my career as
#1. Compensation
#2. benefits / healthcare Edit: (healthcare is a close 2nd, as I carry the insurance for the family, kids are frequent flyers)
#3 work conditions and autonomy
#4 commute.

So here's my 3 options

The first option is to stay at my current employer. The compensation is lower, but we can check off # 2 - #4 as all being excellent. We receive a good amount of paid time off of around 6-8 weeks a year. Also, I'm tenured, well respected and comfortable in my position. But again, not satisfied with the compensation nor the actions of upper management / executives.

The second option is take a travel position. The biggest pro is the income, which could be double or triple my current income. This is important to me.
Cons from most concerning to least concerning are: the benefits are not as good, healthcare is worse, no paid time off, work environment may be worse/more hectic, there is no pension, and there's a very real potential for loss of autonomy.

The third option is moving to another local hospital. Pros are slightly higher income, maybe 10-15% more, good benefits, similar or slightly less paid time off, but the work conditions are unknown and the commute isn't as good as my current employer.


How does one decide how or when to make this type of decision? Thanks all.
You have mentioned money/compensation multiple times. Change jobs and earn more money.


I didn't go into too much detail about the travel industry, as I'm learning as I go, but there's many variables here.
Pay rates are always changing.
Job offers and pay are less in the summer
Health care varies from travel company to company, and ends 2 weeks after each contract (most contracts are 6-13 weeks) unless I re sign.
The consensus is that travel is a younger person's industry based on the health care mentioned above and instability (moving from place to place)

I would travel locally, so the instability wouldn't exist beyond me driving to a new hospital every 13 weeks.

Hope that clears things up. I'll add this to OP.
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RobLyons
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Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

CleverFox wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 6:45 pm Hey Rob,

I understand getting a bit antsy when they've broken a promise, essentially.

What I do in these situations is to perform a weighted grading matrix. This has helped me make some significant decisions in my life, and quantify the options for a good comparison.

Take each of your priorities, and give them a weight out of 100%. For example purposes, I've taken a stab. In your case, you may have one that's 60% and the rest are only 12.5%... it's up to you!

1. Compensation (40%)
2. Benefits (30%)
3. Work Conditions & Autonomy (20%)
4. Commute (10%)
= ALL MUST EQUAL 100% IN TOTAL

So then you take these, put them in a nice little grid and then "rate" each of your options against each criterium.

For example:

Your Ratings:
1 - Dismal, basically should be a zero
2
3 - Neutral
4
5 - BEST, MOST AMAZING, MAX POINTS!


Staying:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (2) = .8
Benefits (.3) x Rating (3) = .9
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (4) = .8
Commute (.1) x Rating (5) = .5
Total score for staying = .8+.9+.8+.5 = 3 total score


Traveling:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (5) = 2.0
Benefits (.3) x Rating (2) = .6
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (3) = .6
Commute (.1) x Rating (1) = .1
Total score for staying = 2.0+.6+.6+.1 = 3.3 total score


Other Local Hospital:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (4) = 1.6
Benefits (.3) x Rating (3) = .9
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (3) = .6
Commute (.1) x Rating (2) = .2
Total score for staying = 1.6 + .9 + .6 + .2 = 3.3 total score

With these weights/criterium, I can see that either option is better than staying at my current employer. If you do this with your own weights/ratings, you'll see how you feel and have a way to mathematically compare your options.

Best of luck!


Wow this is excellent! Thank you for taking the time to type this out. It's being saved in a doc now.
"Great parenting sets the foundation for a better world"
iragg
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Dec 25, 2019 11:13 am

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by iragg »

OP - in your shoes I would first try to see how I can minimize the risks with the other options so that you can make a more informed decision. So, for Option 3 I would try to see who I know (directly or indirectly) at the other local hospital to try to get a sense of the work environment. For Option 2, I would try to use up some vacation time with perhaps some pre-approved leave of absence and do a 6-7 week paid travel job in winter when pay is great - from what you wrote you could earn about 4-5 months' salary (pre-tax) doing this and it would give you a good insight if this is something you can do; I would also reach out to anyone in your network who has done this to ask about their experiences.

For the 2nd option you also have to do a complete fiscal analysis as you would have expenses such as certs etc, and if you need to open up your own LLC etc then there are pros and cons, and you need to make an apples to apples comparison as best as you can. Assuming 2.5x on average and 80% utilization (so 42 weeks paid / 10 weeks off per year), you'd be at double gross income. A lot then depends on your expenses, pension savings and taxes, which only you know. I am guessing you could probably make 30-50% more pre-tax, but is 20% more post-tax worth not seeing your family for 9.5 months of the year? Sounds like that's in-line with Option C at the other local hospital (more or less).

At 41, I personally think you are young enough to go the travel route, but you likely have young kids and they need you. That's a discussion you need to have with them and your spouse. You also have to think really hard about how secure tenure is and how much its worth financially -

The hardest thing is that with inflation at 8-9% even the 5% adjustment would have you falling even further behind, while saving for college isn't getting any easier and you'll probably need to start paying for it in 10 years or so. To put it bluntly, you're like a lobster in a pot; the water is currently just beginning to get warm, but the direction is clear. In my experience, when management reneges on promises, its best to leave unless you're close enough to retirement that they can't really hurt you much; that's not the case, but you will find it harder to get a great job at 45 and 50 than today, so I would be proactive.

Just my two cents - good luck!
KneeReplacementTutor
Posts: 370
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2020 11:52 am

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by KneeReplacementTutor »

This may sound weird to many of you, but this is the kind of decision where I think it’s helpful to pray, meditate, etc and be patient about, vs trying to make right now. To be clear, I’m not promoting religion or encroaching on a boglehead rule. Instead, I’m suggesting that not everything is calculable and the “right” answer if there even is such a thing will be apparent if given time. I don’t anticipate everyone else will agree with that. Simply my two cents.
User avatar
AnnetteLouisan
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Location: New York, NY

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by AnnetteLouisan »

I’m in a somewhat similar spot except I’m reasonably happy with my comp. My plan is to very selectively apply elsewhere internally and externally, maybe speak to a recruiter, and see what my options are, in the meantime hopefully getting more insight into what I value and how what I have compares with what I could have. That way I don’t add being passive and feeling powerless to the list.

The fact that 2-4 are excellent and you have 6 weeks of paid vacation are good reasons to stay. The other options you describe don’t sound better. A raise for you might be coming! 2 months you mention that raises have been under discussion isn’t long.

My impression is that given the very challenging times we are living in (Covid, boomer retirements, inflation, WFH) and the poor visibility as to what’s coming, management at many places is perceived as scrambling or bumbling, not just at your employer. It might be more a reflection of the times than of bad management. It’s hard to budget raises in times like these.
Last edited by AnnetteLouisan on Sat Aug 06, 2022 9:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
smitcat
Posts: 9334
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:51 am

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by smitcat »

RobLyons wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:43 am
cncm wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:32 am I would not change employers for a 10-15% increase in pay, especially if you otherwise like your current job. But for 4-5x more, I would do it, as long as it doesn't take too much time away from family (i.e. if you're going to be working/traveling 100hrs/week, then I'd say it's not worth it).

Another option is if you get a competing offer, your current employer might try to match it or at least significantly increase your pay to try make you stay. What would you do then?


My employer does not match offers. I just edited post, as I was provided a ball park estimate from another hospital which is 25% more, or 20% more after our 5% market adjustment, if we ever receive that. I'd have to interview to get more info, evaluate autonomy/work environment and commute.
Maybe (??) there are more than the 3 options up top...
- get an MHA and advance in that direction
- get additional certificates in a 'specialty' that adds pay
- secure some private clients on the side
- start your own business related to this career
- start your own business in a non-related career
rjbraun
Posts: 1989
Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 8:22 pm

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by rjbraun »

RobLyons wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:54 am I would travel locally, so the instability wouldn't exist beyond me driving to a new hospital every 13 weeks.
Thanks for the updated information.

Unless I'm missing something, I'm not clear how the travel option may not involve instability. Admittedly I don't know your industry but I guess you're basically saying that demand and opportunities for your position are and will remain strong so that you won't need to worry about a gap between travel jobs. But if it's a period of weaker demand and compensation, it seems like you would have to either just take the lower paying job (to avoid a gap) or maybe consider waiting a week or two to see if a higher paying opportunity comes along. To me, that sounds stress-inducing but, admittedly, everyone is different and maybe it won't be for you.

I guess the "breakeven" analysis from a pure "dollars and cents" standpoint is to project what you will earn in your current job over the next year (or whatever time period you choose) vs what you can expect to earn with the travel option, factoring in any possible gaps. So say you decide that you can earn X times your current salary going the travel route, will that compensation offset the inferior terms of items 2 to 4 in your list.
Topic Author
RobLyons
Posts: 1515
Joined: Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:55 pm

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

smitcat wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 8:53 am
RobLyons wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:43 am
cncm wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:32 am I would not change employers for a 10-15% increase in pay, especially if you otherwise like your current job. But for 4-5x more, I would do it, as long as it doesn't take too much time away from family (i.e. if you're going to be working/traveling 100hrs/week, then I'd say it's not worth it).

Another option is if you get a competing offer, your current employer might try to match it or at least significantly increase your pay to try make you stay. What would you do then?


My employer does not match offers. I just edited post, as I was provided a ball park estimate from another hospital which is 25% more, or 20% more after our 5% market adjustment, if we ever receive that. I'd have to interview to get more info, evaluate autonomy/work environment and commute.
Maybe (??) there are more than the 3 options up top...
- get an MHA and advance in that direction
- get additional certificates in a 'specialty' that adds pay
- secure some private clients on the side
- start your own business related to this career
- start your own business in a non-related career


You are correct. There's other options out there but I do enjoy bedside patient care and I feel like I don't have the knowledge or background to start my own business. I wouldn't even know where to start. And pursuing another degree at this point in life doesn't interest me at this time. Colleagues with those specialty skills you talked about are miserable, perhaps that's due to our specific institution. I explored those skills and realized there was not good support. But in the end maybe I'm selling myself short by not pursuing other avenues.
"Great parenting sets the foundation for a better world"
smitcat
Posts: 9334
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:51 am

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by smitcat »

RobLyons wrote: Sun Aug 07, 2022 6:53 am
smitcat wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 8:53 am
RobLyons wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:43 am
cncm wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 6:32 am I would not change employers for a 10-15% increase in pay, especially if you otherwise like your current job. But for 4-5x more, I would do it, as long as it doesn't take too much time away from family (i.e. if you're going to be working/traveling 100hrs/week, then I'd say it's not worth it).

Another option is if you get a competing offer, your current employer might try to match it or at least significantly increase your pay to try make you stay. What would you do then?


My employer does not match offers. I just edited post, as I was provided a ball park estimate from another hospital which is 25% more, or 20% more after our 5% market adjustment, if we ever receive that. I'd have to interview to get more info, evaluate autonomy/work environment and commute.
Maybe (??) there are more than the 3 options up top...
- get an MHA and advance in that direction
- get additional certificates in a 'specialty' that adds pay
- secure some private clients on the side
- start your own business related to this career
- start your own business in a non-related career


You are correct. There's other options out there but I do enjoy bedside patient care and I feel like I don't have the knowledge or background to start my own business. I wouldn't even know where to start. And pursuing another degree at this point in life doesn't interest me at this time. Colleagues with those specialty skills you talked about are miserable, perhaps that's due to our specific institution. I explored those skills and realized there was not good support. But in the end maybe I'm selling myself short by not pursuing other avenues.
I only mentioned it as our daughter is doing most of them at this time. She is in a bedside patient role but believes that might not be best route to continue for 10-15+ years into the future.
Topic Author
RobLyons
Posts: 1515
Joined: Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:55 pm

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by RobLyons »

iragg wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 8:12 am I am guessing you could probably make 30-50% more pre-tax, but is 20% more post-tax worth not seeing your family for 9.5 months of the year? Sounds like that's in-line with Option C at the other local hospital (more or less).

At 41, I personally think you are young enough to go the travel route, but you likely have young kids and they need you. That's a discussion you need to have with them and your spouse. You also have to think really hard about how secure tenure is and how much its worth financially -

I would travel locally within my region, so I could be home almost every day. Good for family, but cuts down on the chances of securing the top paying jobs.

I like your lobster pot analogy. It's starting to feel like that. As I said, I have my financial house in order besides the college funding. I figured they can get scholarships, go to a tech school, state or community college, and finance the rest where we cannot do that with our retirement. I won't tell them until the time comes, but I will be helping them. They are great kids with excellent manners and never asking for much so this feels right. So with that said, money is still tight and it wouldn't be quite as tight with a better income. Thanks for taking the time!
"Great parenting sets the foundation for a better world"
CleverFox
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2022 6:26 pm

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by CleverFox »

RobLyons wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 7:09 am
CleverFox wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 6:45 pm Hey Rob,

I understand getting a bit antsy when they've broken a promise, essentially.

What I do in these situations is to perform a weighted grading matrix. This has helped me make some significant decisions in my life, and quantify the options for a good comparison.

Take each of your priorities, and give them a weight out of 100%. For example purposes, I've taken a stab. In your case, you may have one that's 60% and the rest are only 12.5%... it's up to you!

1. Compensation (40%)
2. Benefits (30%)
3. Work Conditions & Autonomy (20%)
4. Commute (10%)
= ALL MUST EQUAL 100% IN TOTAL

So then you take these, put them in a nice little grid and then "rate" each of your options against each criterium.

For example:

Your Ratings:
1 - Dismal, basically should be a zero
2
3 - Neutral
4
5 - BEST, MOST AMAZING, MAX POINTS!


Staying:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (2) = .8
Benefits (.3) x Rating (3) = .9
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (4) = .8
Commute (.1) x Rating (5) = .5
Total score for staying = .8+.9+.8+.5 = 3 total score


Traveling:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (5) = 2.0
Benefits (.3) x Rating (2) = .6
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (3) = .6
Commute (.1) x Rating (1) = .1
Total score for staying = 2.0+.6+.6+.1 = 3.3 total score


Other Local Hospital:

Compensation (.4) x Rating (4) = 1.6
Benefits (.3) x Rating (3) = .9
Work Conditions (.2) x Rating (3) = .6
Commute (.1) x Rating (2) = .2
Total score for staying = 1.6 + .9 + .6 + .2 = 3.3 total score

With these weights/criterium, I can see that either option is better than staying at my current employer. If you do this with your own weights/ratings, you'll see how you feel and have a way to mathematically compare your options.

Best of luck!


Wow this is excellent! Thank you for taking the time to type this out. It's being saved in a doc now.
Happy to help! It's easier to do in a grid/table format but that wasn't so easy to share in here. You can find many examples online. I've found this to be significantly helpful for many big decisions like what size rv/trailer we might want, to change jobs, to take a job in a different type of role than I was used to, or to sell our house and move far away. I've done this so many times I just save a template in my google spreadsheets. :)

I am happy this will be a useful tool for you. Best of luck!
greenskeeper
Posts: 49
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2022 5:32 pm

Re: How to decide next step in career

Post by greenskeeper »

Current position is unemployment proof, pays less, close to home (4 miles). I'm not going anywhere.
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