As you meander through your training, it is rare to hear from your hospital or training program about your actual value. Sure, you can look on the internet and figure out what the average radiologist in a particular place and situation makes. Of course, you will find salary surveys like Doximity and Medscape. But, they are often off base for your specific situation. These surveys are an odd mixture/overall average of all sorts of practitioners- part-timers, owners, full-time employees, and other employment situations.
So, why is the most accurate information so difficult to find? First of all, hospitals, corporate practices, partnerships, and teleradiology firms (and even your residency program!) are vested in either obfuscating or undercutting the value of radiologists and their practices. It is in their vested interest to hire you at the lowest possible rate to save the most money. Furthermore, you are less likely to change jobs if you don’t know your worth. And, you know what that means. Whether you are a new graduate from residency or an owner/partner of a practice, every radiology trainee and radiologist needs to know their value in the workplace. So, today I will talk about how you can figure out a closer approximation of your value in the marketplace. Knowing your worth is essential for negotiating your next offer to get your best and most comparable value in the market.
Look On Job Sites- Can Give You A Ballpark Value!
Nowadays, many job sites (comp health, radworking, etc.) can give you a vague idea about what radiologists are getting in your market. Sometimes these numbers are inflated for bad situations such as too many RVUs or inappropriate working environments. Nevertheless, it can give a general gestalt of the numbers in that particular radiologist market.
Read ACR Magazine And JACR
The ACR tends to have some good information about the state of the marketplace. It tends to tell you which trends are taking place right now. These trends can give you an idea about the hiring environment. For instance, every once in a while, they will have surveys on working environments or market demand. I find it an interesting ancillary source to figure out the general trends about how radiologists are valued.
Check Out The Big Surveys, But With A Grain Of Salt!
I mentioned some more prominent surveys before, like Medscape, Doximity, and the Aunt Minnie Salary Survey. However, you can’t entirely rely on these for your specifics. Some even include the average with residents who mistakenly add their numbers to the mix. But, if you are looking into the practice of radiology in general, they are not horrible. Then, there is the paid-for evaluation of physician salaries, which has biases. Some have a hospital bent. Others lean toward a private practice or even partnership. You need to be very careful when interpreting this information. It may not apply to your particular situation!
What Are The Needs At Your Hospital And Network?
Sometimes a microcosm of the radiologists at your local residency can be applied to other practices in radiology. For example, is your practice having a tough time findings mammographers. Most of you will hear murmurs of these issues during your residency. This gossip can help determine the value of particular specialties and know how valuable you may become to your future radiology practice when the time comes.
What Is The Mood Of The Forums?
Here is another criterion that is not entirely objective. But, it does give you a flavor of the needs of radiologists in the general community. I like the Aunt Minnie Forum because it has a general radiology bent. And, you see here all sorts of opinions on there. Of course, you will find a few trolls. But, it does give the overall mood of the specialty at a given time when it comes to radiologists and radiology practice valuation. It works as a starting point.
Knowing Your Marketplace Value Is Essential!
When the time comes to look for a job, knowing your worth is essential. Some offers will not be close to the actual value of the work that you will do. And others will be more realistic. To negotiate appropriately, knowing this number is essential. So, consider surveys, but remember they are not entirely correct. Also, consider using other ancillary methods such as the ACR magazine, online job sites, your own hospital needs, and even the overall gestalt when you scroll through the forums. All these are tools that can help to give you a better idea of your magic number. If you don’t learn this information, there is a good chance you will not receive what you are worth!