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Inquiring about how major chains and pay raise as you work longer for a company (if that still exists these days! -- ha!) I'm in Northern California region, but would be open to hearing more about salaries for other metro areas.
 

sozetone

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Anyone being offered >70/hr for a PIC position in this market is a dream. Totally laughable.

Or I was being scammed when I was a PIC.

Yeah i was taken on by WM in 2017 for 70/hr so i dunno where these 85+ numbers come from but im jealous.
 

sozetone

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Inquiring about how major chains and pay raise as you work longer for a company (if that still exists these days! -- ha!) I'm in Northern California region, but would be open to hearing more about salaries for other metro areas.

How do raises work? well first they slowly build a case against you, then fire you or force you to be so miserable you quit. The longer you work, the bigger your bulls eye gets on your back. they just want to replace you with a 50$/hr pharm......or less.....
 
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Pharmacy is a Scam

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How do raises work? well first they slowly build a case against you, then fire you or force you to be so miserable you quit. The longer you work, the bigger your bulls eye gets on your back. they just want to replace you with a 50$/hr pharm......or less.....
Yeah the way I think about it is... if you hear of people making more than you, that is actually a good thing because it means they have a bigger target on their back than you. If nobody is making as much as you do then you're going to be next in line to get laid off. So the key for job security is to be in the 40-50th percentile in terms of salary.
 
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Sine Cura

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However old-timers have the benefit of invoking age discrimination so it's a fine balance.

I mean if I were a few years from retirement making 75-80/hr being a slug what incentive would I have to quit. If you quit you can't claim unemployment. If you get fired you can claim age discrimination and possibly get unemployment depending on how lenient your state is. Make your company work for it.
 
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However old-timers have the benefit of invoking age discrimination so it's a fine balance.

I mean if I were a few years from retirement making 75-80/hr being a slug what incentive would I have to quit. If you quit you can't claim unemployment. If you get fired you can claim age discrimination and possibly get unemployment depending on how lenient your state is. Make your company work for it.
Has anyone actually invoked this and won? You wouldn't have a case for age discrimination because:

1) They will find and cite petty things like metrics, customer reviews etc. to get rid of you so you will never be told that it is because of "age" that you are being laid off. Didn't WAG lay off 40% of their senior pharmacists last year? And yet you don't hear of anyone suing/winning lawsuits.

2) You have one lawyer. Employers have teams of lawyers. Good luck getting a fair chance in court.
 
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Sine Cura

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Yeah but termination due to performance takes a while if done correctly and you can drag it out by going on fake LOA. Termination done incorrectly exposes the company to higher risk of losing a lawsuit

Laying off wide swaths of pharmacists "randomly" by some algorithm is the best approach since it's "randomized"
 
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sozetone

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Yeah but termination due to performance takes a while if done correctly and you can drag it out by going on fake LOA. Termination done incorrectly exposes the company to higher risk of losing a lawsuit

Laying off wide swaths of pharmacists "randomly" by some algorithm is the best approach since it's "randomized"

100% the WM way.... "sorry this salaried position at 64 hours is no longer offered here" " you can apply for other positions for the next 60 days, and if nothing found maybe a severance package (which no one can ever explain during these conversations, which i have had many)", good luck to you, the door is that way .....then they hire a 45-50$/hr hourly or salaried pharm at 56 or less hours per 2 weeks, who struggles and floats to get any hours they can to survive, while sending their 650$ IDR repayment monthly to pay off their 250,000 loan......lmao.
 

sozetone

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However old-timers have the benefit of invoking age discrimination so it's a fine balance.

I mean if I were a few years from retirement making 75-80/hr being a slug what incentive would I have to quit. If you quit you can't claim unemployment. If you get fired you can claim age discrimination and possibly get unemployment depending on how lenient your state is. Make your company work for it.

I dunno man age discrimination is hard to prove, and the companies will drag it out until you die, burying you in legal paperwork until your low rent lawyer cannot withstand their team of crooks. They are pretty well set up people like WM, CVS, and WAGS.....
 
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What's the starting rate for new grads for CVS in the San Francisco / San Jose area these days looking?
 

morenife

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How do raises work? well first they slowly build a case against you, then fire you or force you to be so miserable you quit. The longer you work, the bigger your bulls eye gets on your back. they just want to replace you with a 50$/hr pharm......or less.....

This 100% truth! Experiencing the same in my region.
 
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fxok425

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Just learned today: CA, Walgreens, a pharmacy manager transferred to another Walgreens has to take a $15 pay cut, so probably $50-55 as pharmacy manager in CA
 
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DagS132

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Lol. I haven't seen 1 pharmacy student graduate come back to this forum to talk about how wrong everyone was.
 
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I was offered 57/ hour from big chain and I am a 2020 Grad. I was thinking if I can negotiate this? Is this possibility as it’s really low for Bay Area. Also, I only worked as tech for one year but never worked as intern during school. So may be having no or little experience is the reason I got such a low offer?
I would negotiate they always try to low ball us
 
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Good luck with it. I tried to negotiate with Wag and other retail chains but they will tell you like "Sorry. We can only pay that rate." Please let me know if you are successful either $1 more
I just told them today and they told me the pay they gave me is untill I pass the law exam. But we can talk about it monday. So i will let you know if they give me more.
 

M0df

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They lied to you, hoping you stop applying for other jobs. Your rate will not change once you are licensed.
 
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Crn800

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Staff hospital pharmacist, low 70s an hour base pay. We have evening and night differential, as well as 1.5x pay overtime and holidays.
 
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DH1987

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Always remember the cost of living...$100k in Chicago is a lot different than $100k in Arkansas.
 

PromisedNeverland

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READ the below post and please if numbers are far from this do not believe it. people do not want you to apply in their areas to keep competition out or the posting party is a hiring manager who wants to offer ppl lower to get more bonus so he is preparing you psychologically to accept a low offer. I am writing this comprehensive pay data facts to clear everything out because I am not sure why some of the posts are full of darkness, misleading info, and a very low unrealistic salaries: so ppl saying a PIC in midwest (what that suppose to mean, big difference state to state) is $60 For CVS which is totally a big NO and fake in my opinion and will tell you why.

I was on a business management rotation at one of the BIGGEST chains, I attended interviews with my preceptor (September 2019) and have seen them offering/hiring with the exact below numbers. Everyone one on the list is USA PHARMD graduate, no foreign degrees. (Mostly Class 2019)---I will list many states so pay attention, the info is trusted and even confirmed from close friends/mentors District managers in the three big retail chains:

(((((((NEW YORK))))))))
1- NYC CVS new grad Staff/Floater $59-$60 (my classmate HE got hired as floater started $60 then after one year a PIC $70, Upper Manhatten Area)
as a PIC you are guaranteed 40 hours, I even think 42 hours but not sure about the 42, as a floater he used to make over 50 hours a week most of the weeks. (Race: Brown perfect English accent) (This one class of 2018)

2- NYC CVS Brooklyn Floater $59.75 then to staff same pay within 6 months (SHE was offered a guaranteed 32 hours but ALWAYS had 40 or more unless she does not want to get the shifts) (Race: White middle eastern origin, Perfect English accent)

3- NYC CVS Bronx Staff $59.25 hours a week on a high volume ****ty store no one wants but so what! (Race: Asian HE has a strong accent that you would not understand most of the time, he is a very hard worker the PIC she was Asian too and no it is not an area that has Asian patients population, generally Russians and Black population)

4- NYC CVS Queens Staff pharmacist $59.25 (Race: He is Russian decent, medium accent clear English) not experienced and not a great leader either.

5- NYC CVS Floater $60 Lower Manhatten/middle Manhatten few around times square and about 20 mins far down (White American female and another Brown female with a perfect accent)

6- NY Long Island $59 staff (Brown slight accent, almost perfect English)

7- NY Brooklyn RITE-AID $54.25/$56.25, Staff/Floater (Female white, middle eastern 2 years part-time tech experience with rite aid)

(hint: they need ppl in many places but EASY hire on high demand areas that no one like to work in such as the BRONX in NYC, however as far as I know no pay difference even tough they need ppl in the Bronx, you will be paid same as Brooklyn) (pay difference will be about $5 more than this state standard pay if you go to a city that is far or middle of nowhere in big states/south/far north)

(((((NEW JERSEY))))))
8- NEW JERSEY CVS new grad staff/floater higher is a standard $58.25
9- New Jersey Walgreens (SOUTH jersey) new Grad 2019 offered and accepted $51.95 staff (south jersey slow store, he had no experience, Brown strong accent, Not the typical DM favorite kind of pharmacist) Others I know personally (Asians, White, Brown, medium to perfect accents are staff/floaters with Walgreens in North Jersey and offered $54/hr to $56/hr.

((((((Pennsylvania)))))))
10 - Pennsylvania, they NEED pharmacists (Rite Aid, CVS, Walgreens) ALL of them are dying to hire staff/floaters/managers Pay about (56-60) depends it is a small ****ty town no one wants will pay you more (or at least you know that they would if you ask them)

(((((( INDIANA )))))
They are dying for pharmacists pay in about $2-$5 lower than NJ and sometimes it is the same as NJ or more in some of the middle of nowhere towns. The pay offer you get depends on many things, straight forward DM would give you the max for that position that is offered by the regional managers. Other DM who wants to kiss ass to regional managers would only offer the max allowed to (white or other race with perfect accent// and give Browns or Africans with strong accents a low offer. (this is not disclosed officially of course but that is how it works except for few here and there good honest DMs

(((((((( California )))))))
ALL chains are Dayingggg to hire staff/floaters/managers ( Friends accepted offers CVS as staff ($69, Fresno, San Deigo), Floater ($66 to $73) depends on how much they liked you (so let us say they need to hire 1 and interviewed you and another one, and you are ok but have a strong accent or maybe the DM is not in love with you, they will send you a letter to offer $64 for example as a floater then if you accept it then you saved them to pay the perfect applicant a $73/hr but if you refused then they will just take that other better guy for $73. and do not think they were about to leave the better applicant to go away from their hands, they will offer him/she $73 or even $77 to be a floater in a more needy area in CA. in general PIC in CA for CVS is 75 to 88 depends on how much they like you and how much they need a manager in that location/living cost in that location, etc.


((((((TEXAS)))))
Cities that are away from everything middle of nowhere either north or especially south near the Mexican borders are very high pay relative to the rest of the state (Floaters/Staff in remote not favorable town $63-$68 range in Both CVS and Walgreens)(normal favorable areas $54-$58)
PICs(Remote/unfavorable $75-$78 range)PICs(favorable area $65-$70 range)

(((((Arizona))))
Same as texas and remote cities Tuscan/Yuma desert middle of nowhere same Idea Staff/Floaters $68-$73 and PICs $75-$82


####Hints:::::::::::: You are looking for hospital staff pharmacists that are easy to get in? or even sometimes clinical pharmacists without residency? Look in the far small cities away from the most desirable areas, they always need ppl at least part-time or overnight shifts, which will help you to get the experience and maybe a long term job to leave the retail. Examples: Think South Jersey and not north jersey as it is desirable and close from NY. Think middle of nowhere towns in Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Indiana, Pennsylvania. Think farmers/ farms/ boring areas. Think of boring states in general, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kentucky! Those areas and boring states are also easier to get into a grocery store positions if any is available and you are lucky enough that no one applied or maybe only other very bad applicants/worse than you somehow are applying.

$$$$$IN GENERAL, no matter where you are: Minimum pay/offers is about $53 (that means you are a person of color/black/brown or a person of strong accent or White/perfect accent that the DM really does not like you and just trying to fit the need for 6 months then they will let you go (easily they can find a way to write you up then fire you or nicely be told to resign to avoid being fired) that is what advantage for the metrics in all big chains for the DM of course because he/she can write you up for hundreds of reasons, and get another favorable person once a new wave of grads or applicants come to interview

######No matter what state you are in Except CA because it is higher in CA....all other states to be offered $58 to 68$ depends on favorable/unfavorable towns as STAFF/FLOATER that means they like you and willing to give you what they are allowed. For PICs $70 or above otherwise they are trying to fill the manager positions but they already know you will not do a good a job and will be let go or quitting in a year or less.

+++++CA my personal advice and after asking a close DM (he is not in CA but he knows the rates) He said in CA, I would be an idiot even as a new grad to accept Staff/Floater less than $73 or accept PICs less than $84. they are willing/allowed/budgeted to pay this ore more in CA but they try to pay less so the DM/regional managers get a bonus and things like that. Note: the DM is in CVS in NYC and He was also DM in Rite Aid in NYC and he said these rates apply for CVS however Walgreens is the same or only $2 less in most cases.

IMPORTANT:________People who can't find jobs are not willing to drive 40 to 60 miles and usually, they are in the highly saturated area(which is most big cities now), or they want to find a pharmacist job in their small to medium town and not seriously considering to relocate. I understand relocation is not an option for everyone but NOO pharmacist that considered relocation and have a lic in his state and one more border state can easily find a job within a 2 to 4 months period.

Important NOTE::::: 90 applicants for the same positions is not a true/real count and it does not mean all 90 would accept if an offer is extended. Usually, all applicants apply for multiple locations/cities/states. Hiring managers already know that if they have 90 applicants that might truly mean much less true count.

Example:::::: It is the same concept as pharmacy/medical schools' admissions. One Applicant applies to 5 schools. One school gets 1000 applicants but it means 200 approximately have that school as their first choice. School capacity is 300 seats, so they know that even if they offered to let us say 400 students initially an offer to act and deposit within 2 weeks, they will end up with less number of students for sure then after the initial offering they go their tier two candidates on the waiting list. So that being said if that particular pharmacy school accepted 300 students, it does not mean the other 700 did not have or will never be in a pharmacy school. The chances are that most of the remaining 700 students got accepted in other schools and at the end of the day maybe only 50 out of 1000 never got to pharmacy school.

WORST and BEST TIMEs to APPLY to Big Chains/hospitals:::: Chances are higher during certain times to be hired and/or offered the highest rates possible in your state/city.
This applies to all chains and hospitals: as we all know the turnover rate for retail is high so many pharmacists keep leaving their positions either to get a manager position within the company or at another chain, maybe they switched to a hospital or retired...etc.
Think of it as supply and demand: Thousands of pharmacists graduates every May, about 90% will be available/ready/licensed as a pharmacist between June and September.

According to the position starting date:

WORST time
if the position starting date as a pharmacist During June-September.

The So and So time if the position starting dates During March-May

BEST time
if the position is starting dates During November - January

February is ok would lean more to the BEST than to the SO&SO category....when you read below you will have a better understanding of reasoning.

Understand the """WHY""" behind the timeframe of starting a job, very important for your whole career/life:

If they need let us say a staff pharmacist to fill a position starting June to September. Obviously so many applicants who just came out of student loan debts are excited to start and most of them have the mentality that the job market is tight and they are desperate to accept even low offers so that is a perfect chance for CVS or Walgreens similar companies to extend low pay offers to many applicants and even if only 25% of the applicants accepted the low offers that will be great for the company and they saved money. Once you start with a low offer let us say you accepted $50 offer from Walgreens then even if you are the superman of pharmacists they won't give you a raise for $8 later on and thank you for being amazing. In this situation you are stuck, let us say you started at $50 and even if your classmate started at $55 then next year if the HQ granted a 1% raise you get $50.50 and your classmate gets $50.55 so you are stuck almost forever with accepting a low offer. Even if you want to be a manager within the same company or a different even a different chain, when hiring a manager, of course, they give you more but in many/most of the cases they consider your previous pay rate/level. so for the same manager position, they might offer you a $62 instead of $50 as your current staff AND they would offer your classmate $67 instead of his $55 as a staff. SO the point is accepting a low offer or applying in bad timing can affect you for the rest of your life. exceptions can be if you later on and let us say realized your mistake then do the following to fix this problem:

HOW TO FIX your pay Gap:
Option 1:
if you want to be a manger....work your ass off and hard and be the best BUT NOT ONLY THAT then be a manager in a non-favorable location that does not have many applicants.........the almost only way that you can fix your pay is to apply for a middle of nowhere manager positions during the favorable time of the year which is listed below, in that case, but you also are more likely to be the only applicant with the desired experience to fit the job and they would give you the highest possible rate for that manager PIC position, in that case, they might offer you let us say $75 as a PIC in the middle of nowhere in Arizona or a $70 in Bronx NY as PIC even though your starting/current pay is $50-51 as Staff/floater. (in this scenario the maximum they would offer anyone is the offer you got because you are the only applicant and even if you were a floater for $10 they would still give you the $70 in the Bronx for example, and they would not offer to pay your classmate higher even if he applied and his pay as a staff is $55 because that specific area budget and demand would not allow for higher than $70)..Soooo now if you decided after being a manager for a year or two to go relocate somewhere else or go to another chain then everyone can see that you were getting top dollars for your location so the treatment should be the same and you get out of that low pay Gap cycle you were stuck in. Option 2: if you want to stay as Staff/floater and do not want the responsibility and the headache of being a PIC...Try to switch to a different chain that would not consider your previous pay (you have to just network and ask around to see if they will consider it or ask about it because once they know most likely they will consider it during their offer) Option3: you can also try to be a PIC in a different chain after getting a one-year experience as staff/floater if the other chain did not consider your previous pay or if the position in a high need area they will still offer you the best rate for that position if you are the top/only applicant for that store. MAKE SURE TO ASK AND LEARN ABOUT THE PAY FOR OTHER POSITIONS IF YOU WANT TO FIX your mistake of accepting a low rate in the first place.

To fill a position starting date from April to May even March is borderline but it is more likely to get a bad offer unless you have a great good experience or the job in a location that really needs pharmacists. During April and May, new grads won't get licensed yet but if there is need for a pharmacist then they have to offer them good rates to fill the need, however they can overload the floaters to pass a hard 8 weeks to 12 weeks period to wait for the new grads to be licensed and start with low pay offers and save on budget. So April and May and actually even March can be in between, not a great time to start a job and not the worst either. The Disadvantage for job starting date during this time of year: When you start at CVS or Walgreens or Rite-Aid or pretty much anywhere even at a hospital, usually there is about 30 to 90 days as a probationary period....during this period they can let you go without any reason and you can't do anything about it. Nothing-Nada-zero you can do. This is true for any time during the year but REMEMBERRRRR if you start let us say March 1st and they can try you for 90 days then basically they can let you go on day 89 or around June 1st when they will have a flood of new grads who might have many better candidates better than yourself who even have experience as interns with them, or for any reason that they do not like you even a little bit. you do not have to be a sucker for them to let you go but maybe you are good but there is someone else BETTER that will be available right after they let you go or a couple of weeks later, so they will let you go and get the better guy or the same level guy who accepted the lower pay offer for your positons, AND YESSSS they can and do this.

WHY the BEST time is to start the job from November 1st to approximately January....During this time any company that needs pharmacists they most likely already ran out of the applicants who are even on the waiting list since June previous year grads. and they also do not want to be understaffed until next year's grads can be ready at least in the coming June. Companies strategies and plan as much as they can to avoid this kind of need but **** happens even to CVS or Walgreens. In this scenario, all the odds are in your favor and what makes it even sweeter when you apply to unfavorable locations by most of the population/pharmacists, like if you do not mind working in a near to the borders city in Arizona or in some freezer in Wisconsin., then look for those locations if they have an immediate need and apply and you will get the top dollars you can ever get, maybe even couple of thousands in relocation expenses as a bonus which is NEVER offered now due to the abundance of pharmacits. So NOW you are hired to let us even say in a normal non-remote location, what are the advantages? we already said they most likely won't have as many applicants this time of the year and you will be offered top dollars. also, a Big ADVANTAGE IS your probationary period let us say if you started in November 1st depends on your contract and company policy let us assume it is 90 days then it ends January 31st so you are Permanent or year to year bases or whatever starting February 1st which is at least 4 months far from the newest next grad to come to kick you out of your position. So if you do not such during your first 90 days and showing improvement they will keep you even if your not their ideal pharmacist. However, now you have to use this opportunity and be your best because you will have until next November when they revaluate to see if they will renew your contract or something. In the case of after one year and you are not on one year contract but you are permanent or long term contract then they can't just fire you because they do not like you, in order for them to let you go or fire you, they have to first find a way to prove that your metrics are bad or write you up for a bid reason or even write you up few times for small reasons. ((((of course, they have so much opportunity to write you up and make up reasons to fire you or let you go legally, but if you are not a very evil person who really makes everyone hates you then there is no need to assume they would do that to you)))) anyway no sucker pharmacist will ever continue in their job but this will give you the chance to work in the same place for a WHOLE year or even more then during that it is up to you on becoming the best you can and let them see that you are a good pharmacist at your current position.

STRATEGY IN ACCEPTING Low offer: I know you really want to start as a new grad in June or even before taking NAPLEX, haha but relax take a deep breath and think about what I am about to say here, especially if you do not have much or no retail experience except your that one or two retail rotations and/or volunteering many years ago during your pre-pharm. It is ok you do not have to panic or rush in accepting a low pay offer. If you HAVE to and NEED to accept a low pay offer then accept the offer in the chain or the hospital that you are NOT planning to continue with, like if you are for some WEIRD reason LOVE CVS and let us say you applied for CVS and Walgreens Both gave you an offer for the staff or floater let us say NYC because I know the exact rate for NYC....let us say your offer was 52$ from both chains, now you have to pause and think DEEPLY is that rate you want to continue with for the rest of your life? is that the highest rate you heard or seen a classmate getting paid? if the answer is for any of these questions (it is because the staff/floater new grad rate at CVS NYC is $59-$60/hr then if you know this fact you SHOULD if you NEED the money to accept the offer from the company that you do NOT want to work for....YESSSS I am saying this right. you accept the offer from the company that you do not want to work for, because it is a LOW ****ty offer! you do not want to get a record at your favorite place of work with a low starting pay then they will always low ball you and offer you low payments most of the time unless you will be a superhero pharmacist and want to be a superhero PIC in the future then MAYBE just a low chance MAYBE you fix your low pay gap between the offer you accepted and between your classmates or the highest pay rate for the same position in your district. so the best strategy if you have to accept a low offer to go with the company you hate working for then following one of the three options that I mentioned above to fix your pay. It is better to do this because if you for any reason hated the pay so much, then you can leave even after a short time if you got any better offer from a hospital for example and that won't hurt you as much as leaving your favorite company because it is really hard if you left a company on bad terms to go back again with good pay or come back again at all. SAVE your favorite CHAIN until you are offered by them a good pay or until you get more experience at another chain so when you re-apply for your favorite chain you have better chances to get offered the top dollars and not be low played into accepting a low ****ty pay offer.
ANOTHER SCENARIO when you should NOT work for your FAVORITE chain: if you have no experience at all AND you do not feel confident AT ALL that you can fast learn and be a good pharmacist. or you already know that you are a slow learner and will be most likely missing things up and getting written up. then apply and accept even low offers from NOT your favorite chain then after getting your experience and getting written up and go through all the **** even if you got fired or let go nicely because you suck then at least you can go now apply and start clean with another chain....yes sure if you got fired or did a big ****ty job then they most likely know but it is a BIG difference if you have a bad record at another company or if this ****ty bad record will stay forever at your own company.....after few years when you want to be promoted or if they are considering who to let go because they will close stores nationwide for any reason, now your current company won't remember what you did at the other previous employer because they care more about your record with them, but you are screwed almost forever if you started with them and because of your foolish inexperienced mistakes as a new grad got written up or something this goes for many years on your record.

I hope this helps someone and makes them cheer up and see the facts as clear as they are. Not too pinky and cute but it is far from a sad or dark future.

COVID-19 related point worth mentioning: We as pharmacists are in no way as knowledgable as MD/OD so please do not be disappointed if our demand did not increase because to be honest, we do not have any expertise (memorizing some SE for a drug can be easily found by a click of a button so do not count that as expertise please) to provide or knowledge that physicians already have 10x more. Our demand will be always the highest as Retail pharmacists 80% (overpaid cashiers and NOT healthcare providers except for that pitty of counseling we give every now and then or answer some qs on OTC) we are just lucky so far that they require a pharmacist to verify the Rx (any idiot with half a brain can do that honestly) anyway just be a cool retail pharmacist and do not complain that they do not appreciate your knowledge when a nation disaster hits because 90% of the pharmacists in this country did not even know that Hydroxychloroquine was used and had clinical trials from many years ago and was beneficial on SARS. and more than 50% did not remember offhand all the side effects, most had to look it up to refresh their memory (any grandma can google side effect) we just have a slight advantage in interpreting it........SOOOOO relaxxxxx and know your worth, you are not an expert or someone who is needed as a brain during a pandemic but be thankful for the retail jobs out there who still pay a decent amount of money....Peace!!

first things first, how long did it take you to write this?!

secondly is there a TLDR version?
 
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