Pharmacists Are Content with Their Salaries, Less So with Their Jobs, Survey Shows (Part 2)

Although many pharmacists are divided when it comes to their job satisfaction, most of them are happy with their compensation, according to a recent Pharmacy Times® Salary and Job Satisfaction Survey.

Although many pharmacists are divided when it comes to their job satisfaction, most of them are happy with their compensation, according to a recent Pharmacy Times® Salary and Job Satisfaction Survey.

The first article in this 3-part series provided a general overview of the survey and its respondents. In this article, we will explore the questions and answers concerning compensation.

When asked on a scale of 1 to 7 (with 1 being "not at all" and 7 being "extremely") how satisfied they are with their current annual total compensation, the average response of the 580 pharmacists who answered the question was a 4.74. Meanwhile, when asked to rate (from 1 to 7) how satisfied they were with their annual total compensation during their first year after pharmacy school, the average answer was a 4.88, with 579 pharmacists responding to this question.

Additionally, about 37.3% of respondents indicated that they had received some form of additional compensation, such as bonuses or profit sharing, in the past year. Comparatively, just 30.6% of respondents had received additional compensation during their first year after graduating pharmacy school.

Notably, the survey results showed a slight shift from community pharmacy practice to health systems and other nontraditional settings during the course of some pharmacists’ careers. When asked about the practice setting in which they primarily worked during their first year after graduating from pharmacy school, 65% of respondents answered that they worked in a community pharmacy, 24.9% said that they worked in a health-system pharmacy, and 8% described their primary setting as “other.” However, 56.4% of pharmacists indicated that their current primary setting is a community pharmacy, while 28.8% of pharmacists said that they currently work in a health system, and 11.6% described their current primary practice setting as “other.”

Although the majority of survey respondents were generally satisfied with their salaries, some were more critical. Marian Milender, RPh, a retail pharmacist from Iowa with over 40 years of experience in the profession, rated her satisfaction with her annual total compensation as a “3.” Specifically, she voiced concern about the fact that the work schedule is less flexible compared to working in an independent pharmacy.

“I have been happy with being in retail overall, although my ‘favorite’ and most satisfying times have been when I was employed by an independent pharmacy,” Milender said in an interview.

“The compensation was less, but the work schedule was much more family friendly, and I felt more appreciated,” she said. “I feel my compensation is okay with the chain I currently work for, but the schedule is not as respectful of everyone.”

Next month, in part 3 of Pharmacists are Content With Their Salaries, Less So With Their Jobs, Survey Shows, we will explore how survey respondents view their job satisfaction.