CVS vs. Walgreens as a new pharmacist (Class of 2020)? Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist.

tuf06150

5+ Year Member
Aug 1, 2015
23
7
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I am currently a grad intern at Walgreens. Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist. I know the computer system at Walgreens, and I have to learn everything if I leave Walgreens and join CVS. Which one should I pick?
 

Gombrich12

No PCAT Required!
7+ Year Member
Dec 4, 2013
726
892
I thought I'd never write these words, but I would work for CVS. Make sure you're applying for other jobs after 3-6 months there.
 
  • Like
  • Dislike
Reactions: 10 users
About the Ads

Hels2007

I bite
Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
Jun 30, 2007
1,347
509
Boston metro area
Status
  1. Pharmacist
While CVS is miserable, Walgreens have been striving to catch up and overtake them in the race to the bottom. Their only advantage is the really nice intuitive computer system, and it's not work $7/hour difference. Go with CVS, get paychecks and experience, and once you have experience, keep your eyes and ears peeled for better options. Job search is better once you are both currently employed and have real world experience.

Even as recently as five years ago, if someone told me I would be recommending CVS over Walgreens, I would have laughed...
 
  • Like
Reactions: 5 users

Wickett

7+ Year Member
Mar 28, 2012
533
722
Status
  1. Pharmacist
As much as I hate to say it, CVS. Walgreens is only a step or two behind in the dbaggery dept, and they have stagnant pay, layoffs, and much more general instability. CVS at least still gives out raises and getting a staff offer is much better than fighting it out in the general float pool.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

owlbright

Chubbic Bowman
7+ Year Member
Jun 21, 2013
222
53
Status
  1. Pharmacy Student
I am currently a grad intern at Walgreens. Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist. I know the computer system at Walgreens, and I have to learn everything if I leave Walgreens and join CVS. Which one should I pick?
Which state are you in if you do not mind asking?
 

quickpic007

2+ Year Member
Sep 22, 2016
541
305
I am currently a grad intern at Walgreens. Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist. I know the computer system at Walgreens, and I have to learn everything if I leave Walgreens and join CVS. Which one should I pick?

depends on how competent/good you are and what your goal is.
I would say go with WG first, and learn your skill there, once you are confident move up to CVS,walmart, grocery etc. For a retail career WG is at the absolute bottom for compensation and job security, so it is a good place to leave behind.

CVS represents a good opportunity for $$ if you can work, get hours and save. WG not so much. But man it is tiring.
 

Xenophylia

Charles Darwin fan club president
2+ Year Member
Apr 18, 2018
805
965
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Plus didn't I just read that Walgreens just hired an ex Rite Aid CEO or something? When you start hiring ex Rite Aid staff, things can't be good and only gonna get worse with one of their people at the helm.
 
  • Wow
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

rxkrafted

5+ Year Member
Apr 9, 2014
758
884
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Not sure why this is even up for discussion lol. You're telling me that you spent 4 years learning in pharm school but you're contemplating learning a new computer system for an extra $15K per year and a designated store?
I guess that's all it takes now for new grads to accept lower offers now... learning curve on a computer system that some techs with just a high school diploma can learn.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
About the Ads

mentos

10+ Year Member
Nov 22, 2009
5,601
5,519
How is this even a question? $7/hr is significant, especially if you're stuck in retail for several years. You'll never see a raise again in retail. So if you're there for 5 years, that's an extra $75,000. Ten years, an extra $150,000. Assuming 40 hours at each.

"But what about the computer system? It'll take me like two weeks to learn a new system!" LMAO.
 

DH1987

7+ Year Member
May 20, 2011
235
122
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I've been with WAGs over 4 years and not a single raise. I'd probably go to CVS for a few dollars/hr less if they still give them. Anyone know how much they typically raise per year?

Side note: typing this on a phone is really annoying. Everytime I backspace it just turns my keyboard off...
 

ValeRx

Not Retail
10+ Year Member
Dec 15, 2008
1,870
653
Midwest
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I've been with WAGs over 4 years and not a single raise. I'd probably go to CVS for a few dollars/hr less if they still give them. Anyone know how much they typically raise per year?

Side note: typing this on a phone is really annoying. Everytime I backspace it just turns my keyboard off...

I went five years at Kroger with no raise. Rumor has it in my area that SOME pharmacists got a 1% raise but not all.
 
Feb 10, 2020
250
59
Status
  1. Pharmacy Student
Curious about cvs raise too. I spoke to upper classmates and I don’t think it was a lot. But would love to hear from person who is working for cvs and got the raise.
 

steveysmith54

Member
15+ Year Member
Dec 29, 2005
2,277
1,300
Status
I am currently a grad intern at Walgreens. Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist. I know the computer system at Walgreens, and I have to learn everything if I leave Walgreens and join CVS. Which one should I pick?

What state?
 

johnpharm01

2+ Year Member
Feb 16, 2018
648
547
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I'll answer your question, if you answer mine.

CVS, based on what you have said.

Now why did you ever go to pharmacy school?

I get paid $14 an hour higher than you will and I think it should be more.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users

mentos

10+ Year Member
Nov 22, 2009
5,601
5,519
Curious about cvs raise too. I spoke to upper classmates and I don’t think it was a lot. But would love to hear from person who is working for cvs and got the raise.

50 cents - $1 if you're lucky nowadays. Most likely nothing for this year and beyond.
 
  • Wow
Reactions: 1 user

tuf06150

5+ Year Member
Aug 1, 2015
23
7
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I'll answer your question if you answer mine.

CVS, based on what you have said.

Now, why did you ever go to pharmacy school?

I get paid $14 an hour higher than you will, and I think it should be more.
What to do? I am already in the profession. I just need to finish my loans first. Can not do that, not working.
 
About the Ads
D

deleted562805

I would take CVS. Full time staff. You will get your hours. Floater, you may not get full 40 hrs. Be prepared with CVS, training goes by quick and next thing you know they will stick in you a store by yourself with no tech. Walgreens I have heard provides at least one tech per shift

If you don’t get full 40 hrs, which is expected in a floater position, Walgreens may not pay you $46 per hour. Hours of work determines how much you will be paid. Make sure CVS is giving you 40 hr work weeks
 

Sine Cura

#BlackNusMatter
10+ Year Member
Feb 5, 2010
3,233
2,466
Status
  1. Pharmacist
If you taking that FT CVS job i'd do some quick research on the area so you can brace yourself mentally (i.e., you might not want to drive a nice car to work and if you're a woman park relatively close to the entrance). Some areas are clown shows, which is why some hiring managers are desperate to slot a new grad FT pharmacist in one of those rare job openings.
 
  • Like
  • Wow
  • Sad
Reactions: 4 users
Feb 10, 2020
250
59
Status
  1. Pharmacy Student
I would take CVS. Full time staff. You will get your hours. Floater, you may not get full 40 hrs. Be prepared with CVS, training goes by quick and next thing you know they will stick in you a store by yourself with no tech. Walgreens I have heard provides at least one tech per shift

If you don’t get full 40 hrs, which is expected in a floater position, Walgreens may not pay you $46 per hour. Hours of work determines how much you will be paid. Make sure CVS is giving you 40 hr work weeks
This is true. In California,I was told floaters gets 20 -25 hours But even staff don’t get 40 hours. This year they hired all new grads as floaters in my market. I asked my recruiters about hours and I was told that we Will get 30 hours as full time. 30 hours is nothing!
 

HouTX

7+ Year Member
May 15, 2012
264
114
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I went five years at Kroger with no raise. Rumor has it in my area that SOME pharmacists got a 1% raise but not all.

Yes, this year was the first year in a while that RPhs received raises. On the compensation statement, it said it was a special adjustment though. I believe 1% was the max also and not everybody got it.

The pay band at Kroger has steadily decrease YoY also.
 

johnpharm01

2+ Year Member
Feb 16, 2018
648
547
Status
  1. Pharmacist
What to do? I am already in the profession. I just need to finish my loans first. Can not do that, not working.

You weren't when you decided to go to school approximately 6 years ago 2014. That's what I am trying to understand and I am not trying to be critical.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
May 17, 2020
65
43
Los Angeles
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I am currently a grad intern at Walgreens. Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist. I know the computer system at Walgreens, and I have to learn everything if I leave Walgreens and join CVS. Which one should I pick?

Money and guaranteed hours in this market. No question.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

mentos

10+ Year Member
Nov 22, 2009
5,601
5,519
You weren't when you decided to go to school approximately 6 years ago 2014. That's what I am trying to understand and I am not trying to be critical.

He/she heard about all the pharmacists making $60+/hr and ignored what everyone said about saturation because 1) it wouldn't affect them, only everyone else 2) "passion" 3) "they want to help people"
 
  • Like
  • Haha
Reactions: 3 users
Sep 25, 2009
10
5
Status
  1. Pharmacy Student
Was with Wag for 5 years before switching to specialty. Just based on pay, I would say CVS. HOWEVER, I did read where a new grad received an offer for CVS that required that they sign a restrictive covenant agreement, basically saying that they can't work at any competitors (Wag, independent, etc) for 18 MONTHS after leaving CVS if they quit. Not sure how they would enforce this, and it is second-hand info, but I think it's still worth considering.

So as long as there isn't some sort of clause like that attached to the job, I think most would say CVS. Then start applying to other more desirable jobs as soon as possible.
 

WorthlessOxygen

2+ Year Member
Mar 25, 2018
286
280
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Was with Wag for 5 years before switching to specialty. Just based on pay, I would say CVS. HOWEVER, I did read where a new grad received an offer for CVS that required that they sign a restrictive covenant agreement, basically saying that they can't work at any competitors (Wag, independent, etc) for 18 MONTHS after leaving CVS if they quit. Not sure how they would enforce this, and it is second-hand info, but I think it's still worth considering.

So as long as there isn't some sort of clause like that attached to the job, I think most would say CVS. Then start applying to other more desirable jobs as soon as possible.
I'm no lawyer but I've always been told that these crazy restrictive clauses are not legally enforceable. Kind of a moot point here anyway though
 
About the Ads
Apr 8, 2020
21
7
Status
  1. Pharmacy Student
Does anyone know if for CVS and/or Wags, pharmacist pay rate goes up after working a full year as a "new grad pharmacist"? I know they do that at some grocery chains.
 
  • Haha
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users

mentos

10+ Year Member
Nov 22, 2009
5,601
5,519
Was with Wag for 5 years before switching to specialty. Just based on pay, I would say CVS. HOWEVER, I did read where a new grad received an offer for CVS that required that they sign a restrictive covenant agreement, basically saying that they can't work at any competitors (Wag, independent, etc) for 18 MONTHS after leaving CVS if they quit. Not sure how they would enforce this, and it is second-hand info, but I think it's still worth considering.

So as long as there isn't some sort of clause like that attached to the job, I think most would say CVS. Then start applying to other more desirable jobs as soon as possible.

Tell them to go pound sand. What are they going to do, stalk you for 18 months after you leave? Have fun doing that for people who move out of state.

Does anyone know if for CVS and/or Wags, pharmacist pay rate goes up after working a full year as a "new grad pharmacist"? I know they do that at some grocery chains.

LoL nope. New grads are lucky to have any job at all. Expect no raises or bonuses from now on. Walgreens hasn't had raises or bonuses in like 3 years.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
Jun 27, 2013
2,756
1,169
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Yes, this year was the first year in a while that RPhs received raises. On the compensation statement, it said it was a special adjustment though. I believe 1% was the max also and not everybody got it.

The pay band at Kroger has steadily decrease YoY also.
1% isn't a raise.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users

ValeRx

Not Retail
10+ Year Member
Dec 15, 2008
1,870
653
Midwest
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Agreed. It isn’t even a cost of living adjustment.

It's laughable... that's what it is. When I was there I asked my DM why we hadn't got any raises in five years. The response was, "we should have never got any raises the last few years. This is industry standard." So glad I went federal where I will get raises well beyond what my max salary could have been even if I stayed with Kroger.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
D

deleted562805

Was with Wag for 5 years before switching to specialty. Just based on pay, I would say CVS. HOWEVER, I did read where a new grad received an offer for CVS that required that they sign a restrictive covenant agreement, basically saying that they can't work at any competitors (Wag, independent, etc) for 18 MONTHS after leaving CVS if they quit. Not sure how they would enforce this, and it is second-hand info, but I think it's still worth considering.

So as long as there isn't some sort of clause like that attached to the job, I think most would say CVS. Then start applying to other more desirable jobs as soon as possible.
Lol, there is no way they can track people moving to a company after 18 months. What are they going to exactly do?
 

Sine Cura

#BlackNusMatter
10+ Year Member
Feb 5, 2010
3,233
2,466
Status
  1. Pharmacist
  • Wow
Reactions: 1 user
Feb 10, 2020
250
59
Status
  1. Pharmacy Student
Meawhile Kaiser pharmacists being paid $80/hr with mandatory annual raises that kinda cover cost of living increases


Also CVS can screw you over and put on on a LOLblacklist that somehow other employers actually look up? SDN thread "Pharmacist blacklisted on global database Esteem"
But it’s so hard to get hired at Kaiser. I spoke to pharmacist who worked for them, he said he never got hours as hours were based on seniority. He actually liked cvs better lol
 

DH1987

7+ Year Member
May 20, 2011
235
122
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Yeah, average yearly inflation hovers around 2-3%. You're effectively making less every year with a 1% "raise".
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Sine Cura

#BlackNusMatter
10+ Year Member
Feb 5, 2010
3,233
2,466
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Found another example of being aware of where you work

If you live in California, go to the Megan's Law website and search by zip codes nearby.

I found 8 customers (1 woman) who go to my pharmacy. Regular customers, chronic opioids, maintenance meds. None of them actually stir up any trouble

I looked it up about 4 years ago and didn't notice anyone: California Megans Law
 

quickpic007

2+ Year Member
Sep 22, 2016
541
305
Found another example of being aware of where you work

If you live in California, go to the Megan's Law website and search by zip codes nearby.

I found 8 customers (1 woman) who go to my pharmacy. Regular customers, chronic opioids, maintenance meds. None of them actually stir up any trouble

I looked it up about 4 years ago and didn't notice anyone: California Megans Law

one of our two regulars moved away and the other is in here ALL THE TIME. haven't checked this in a few years...
 

NorthTexasPharmacist

Membership Revoked
Removed
Jul 30, 2020
133
88
Status
  1. Pharmacist
I am currently a grad intern at Walgreens. Walgreens is offering 46$/hr as a floater, and CVS is offering 53$/hr as a staff pharmacist. I know the computer system at Walgreens, and I have to learn everything if I leave Walgreens and join CVS. Which one should I pick?
Either is a good stepping stone into hating your profession.... Having worked at CVS, I wouldn't pick CVS.

If I was Bruce Willis from Armageddon and I had to press that button to save earth, I would purposely not press it so I can kill CVS.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
Oct 13, 2019
207
154
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Walgreens stock is tanking big time, especially since they hired a new CEO. Go with the company that is better off financially.
 

NorthTexasPharmacist

Membership Revoked
Removed
Jul 30, 2020
133
88
Status
  1. Pharmacist
Walgreens stock is tanking big time, especially since they hired a new CEO. Go with the company that is better off financially.
CVS isnt better off lol Aetna merger has been a disaster. No company is doing well when they have to sacrifice their own employees to survive.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

  1. Your new thread title is very short, and likely is unhelpful.
  2. Your reply is very short and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  3. Your reply is very long and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  4. It is very likely that it does not need any further discussion and thus bumping it serves no purpose.
  5. Your message is mostly quotes or spoilers.
  6. Your reply has occurred very quickly after a previous reply and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  7. This thread is locked.
About the Ads