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  • FIRST POST
    • redlfc
    • By redlfc 10th Jan 19, 5:40 PM
    • 101Posts
    • 34Thanks
    redlfc
    Which professions do you think are overworked/underpaid? Similarly which are well paid?
    • #1
    • 10th Jan 19, 5:40 PM
    Which professions do you think are overworked/underpaid? Similarly which are well paid? 10th Jan 19 at 5:40 PM
    Now I'm not writing this as a way of just moaning/complaining but just wanted your thoughts

    Background - 25 year old junior doctor in London , now in year 2 of employment post finishing degree. I have recently found out my student loan has been collecting a whopping 6.1-6.6% interest throughout my years at medical school (started Sept 2012)

    My current repayment amount sits at over 70k! and still collecting interest at 6.1%.

    My main grievance is with the salary I get for the hours/stressload I experience at work. The basic salary for FY1 Doctor is 26,614 for a 40 hour week - this is increased with additional nights/weekends/bank holiday/evening on calls - so it depends on what rotation you are on but I was being paid 30,450 for working 1 in 4/5 weekends (12.5 hour shifts Friday-Sun) +the rest of the of the nights/on calls

    This basic salary goes up incrementally as you progress but only to a max of 46,500 at ST8 level before consultancy (this would take 11 years to get to (F1/F2/CT1-3/ST3-8) and thats without taking any time out)



    So thats a salary of 46,500 after accumulating 70+k debt (and rising) at 5/6 years of medical school, and a further 11 years to get to this figure. So thats 17 years from starting university to get to earning 46,500 for a 40 hour week - and thats if you are one of the very very few individuals who has managed to pass straight through medschool/training without any time out for research/gap years/resits/maternity etc - in reality its longer (I have kept it at 40 hour to allow comparison to other jobs - note I know not everyone works 40 hours in reality but contractually this allows easy comparison as most jobs are 40 hour weeks)



    Now I am lucky that I am still living at home with my parents - but if I was renting in London with the salary I am getting plus the student debt ive accumulated - I would be struggling to stay afloat - and that would be potentially for years as you can see the salary does not improve that much. It is only when you get to consultant level that the salary hits 75k and above.

    Having compared my salary to many friends - I am the least paid by far. Now I did not go into Medicine for money but this is depressing. I also work far more than they do - and they are always wondering how I manage to constantly have to do nights/weekends - it is these shifts which are the real killer!



    Am I right in thinking most of you in finance/consulting/IT/engineering jobs are paid over 45k a couple of years post 3 year degrees? Im not saying this to try and devalue other careers - its more I feel that doctors are significantly underpaid when you consider the stress of job/unsociable hours/time spent to get to this position. I just want to know thoughts of people as it seems most of my friends are earning around 50k at the age of 25 with that likely to go up and up in a fairly short space of time.
Page 6
    • JayRitchie
    • By JayRitchie 23rd Jan 19, 9:26 PM
    • 72 Posts
    • 75 Thanks
    JayRitchie
    yes but dont forget the degree is double the length of others. Also I dont agree the year 1 salary is high anyway - almost all graduate schemes have a higher starting salary and thats for 3 year courses - as a first year doctor youre already a few years behind everyone - with a much higher student loan to boot!
    Originally posted by redlfc
    I think, as others do, that regional variations play a big part. To my knowledge doctors have a fair amount of choice in where to work. A doctor from the NE/ Wales etc can probably find a job there. A graduate looking for grad schemes probably doesn't have that choice. Plus the doctors pay is very high in local terms whereas it isn't in London.

    I'd be a bit cautious about grad scheme salaries. Yes - they tend to be pretty good, but they are hard to get on. Most graduates with medical applicant type A level results/ 2i won't get a job on one of these schemes. The average pay for biology graduates from universities requiring AAA+ is really not very high.
    • JayRitchie
    • By JayRitchie 23rd Jan 19, 9:29 PM
    • 72 Posts
    • 75 Thanks
    JayRitchie
    The fact that the Nhs recruits so many doctors from 3rd world countries would suggest that the rates arent attractive enough to many potential medics in the UK. Its one area where i would be happy to pay more tax to increase funding.
    Originally posted by coffeehound
    There is huge competition for medical school places in the UK - the problem is not a lack of great candidates but shortage of funded training at universities.
    • theoretica
    • By theoretica 23rd Jan 19, 9:34 PM
    • 5,615 Posts
    • 6,920 Thanks
    theoretica
    I think there is also a distinction to be made between overworked and underpaid and they do not always go together. A higher wage would not make some jobs more sustainable in the long term in the same way that better staffing would.
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
    • JayRitchie
    • By JayRitchie 23rd Jan 19, 9:36 PM
    • 72 Posts
    • 75 Thanks
    JayRitchie
    No, you're not right.

    You're far better paid than most newly qualified accountants, most of whom will have done a 3 yr degree plus a further 3 yrs training and qualifications and likely to be on around 30k at your age. There will also be a smaller percentage hit 6 figure salaries than in medicine.

    Or......... you could be an academic. 3 yr undergraduate degree, plus commonly a 1 yr masters degree, plus minimum 3 yrs PhD so many aged 25 are not yet actually in a paid job. In terms of time spent to get to a decent salary, medicine has got nothing on higher education. First jobs as a postdoctorate are lucky to earn 30k. The number of academics who will hit the 6 figure salary is tiny.
    Originally posted by Wobblydeb
    Most NQ accountants earn more than that - certainly those with equivalent A level results to doctors. The going rate in London with 3-4 years experience and professionally qualified is around 50-55k, some get more. I'm not sure what it is these days outside the South East but I believe its notably higher than 30k in industry - it was when I recruited in Lancashire 10 years ago.

    Academic careers look terrible to me. The people doing them don't seem to realise how poor the salaries are given lack of job security before tenure and often years of contract positions.
    • Planet Switzerland
    • By Planet Switzerland 27th Jan 19, 8:31 PM
    • 178 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    Planet Switzerland
    I think most professions will have people who are both underpaid and overpaid, it's mostly down to who you work for.


    At one of my old companies there was a developer who was getting 18k, not sure how long he'd been doing it but would guess he joined as a graduate given how much he was getting. He left to go to a job paying 52k, but had he just stayed working there he probably wouldn't be getting much more than 18k now given how tight they were.


    Generally speaking a certain number of years experience or gaining additional qualifications doesn't mean your employer will automatically pay you more money. I remember a friend of mine once getting a promotion after gaining a qualification, but no payrise. Some people successfully negotiate a decent payrise with their company or find a better paid job elsewhere, others stay put and just accept the pay freezes or miniscule payrises, even if they are better at doing their jobs.
    • zagubov
    • By zagubov 27th Jan 19, 10:32 PM
    • 15,787 Posts
    • 132,641 Thanks
    zagubov
    Years ago somebody wrote a letter to a newspaper which made some good points about jobs. He claimed that most higher positions in organisations were filled by people who contributed little to nothing to the general good of society and their jobs were unnecessary for the proper functioning of the world. Many managerial roles have inflated salaries but add nothing great to the world.

    He suggested that these people should just be stripped of their jobs but be allowed to retain their job titles and their high salaries. However their new real jobs would be to be carers, meals on wheels providers, hospital cleaners, orderlies, teaching assistants, etc.

    In other words they should do jobs that really matter and that actually help everybody instead of being about self-aggrandisement. I know this wouldn't be any cheaper than what we've got now, but the work going on in the economy would be what really needs to be done, rather than being about who can sell us the best sports shoes or overpowered mobile phones.
    There is no honour to be had in not knowing a thing that can be known - Danny Baker
    • hyubh
    • By hyubh 28th Jan 19, 12:02 AM
    • 2,404 Posts
    • 1,847 Thanks
    hyubh
    Years ago somebody wrote a letter to a newspaper which made some good points about jobs. He claimed that most higher positions in organisations were filled by people who contributed little to nothing to the general good of society and their jobs were unnecessary for the proper functioning of the world. Many managerial roles have inflated salaries but add nothing great to the world.

    He suggested that these people should just be stripped of their jobs but be allowed to retain their job titles and their high salaries. However their new real jobs would be to be carers, meals on wheels providers, hospital cleaners, orderlies, teaching assistants, etc.
    Originally posted by zagubov
    Who does the managing in this scenario...? Or is the idea, with cleverer people now acting as carers, meals on wheels providers, hospital cleaners, orderlies, teaching assistants, etc., those occupations will be able to manage themselves...?

    In other words they should do jobs that really matter and that actually help everybody instead of being about self-aggrandisement.
    An ability to organise may come with self-aggrandisement, but it is surely not self-aggrandisement itself.

    I know this wouldn't be any cheaper than what we've got now, but the work going on in the economy would be what really needs to be done, rather than being about who can sell us the best sports shoes or overpowered mobile phones.
    And yet, even carers, meals on wheels providers, hospital cleaners, orderlies, teaching assistants, etc., care about their trainers and smartphones, or what trainers and smartphones they might somehow get...
    • OhhEnnEmm
    • By OhhEnnEmm 6th Feb 19, 5:33 PM
    • 22 Posts
    • 8 Thanks
    OhhEnnEmm
    I'm not going to name the companies, but I used to do admin at several midlands-known estate agents and the pay SUCKED... I stuck the jobs out for a good few years, definitely too many, then realised I wasn't advancing, and likely never would. I've always worked with cars so got onto my nearest auto recruiters and explained to them that I'd never worked in the industry but needed a change and was more than capable from personal experience with cars. Before I even had my first interview I'd been in twice, once to sign up and a second time for interview training, which was free! So I actually ended up getting the third job I was interviewed for, which I consider really good considering I didn't have any past experience doing it professionally.

    If you know what field you wanna get into, it might be worth speaking to a consultant or professional recruiter, a lot of the time you can get good free advice and you'll know which roles to avoid and which ones to go for. You'll also stand a better chance of getting in with less interviews, and since interviews are unpaid I'd say that's a great bloody idea!

    I feel like I've been through a lot the past few years in terms of jobs/careers so hopefully this can help you, but it's just my personal experience with it.

    Either way,

    Best of luck no matter what you decide!

    Best wishes.
    • LawAbiding
    • By LawAbiding 6th Feb 19, 6:10 PM
    • 98 Posts
    • 33 Thanks
    LawAbiding
    9 years ago, I was stuck in a call centre wondering if this was my working life.

    9 years later, I am going into a job which pays 60k+ and I have just turned 31.

    All without any formal qualifications, just sheer hard work and dedication to my role.

    I work in the Laboratory sector and having worked in the NHS before, for sure, Health Professionals across the board are under paid.

    I do not have the same stress, same hours and same responsibilities that you do, but yet I get paid much more.

    Just doesn't add up.
    • gettingready
    • By gettingready 7th Feb 19, 12:21 AM
    • 10,903 Posts
    • 16,290 Thanks
    gettingready
    Most overworked/underpaid AND literally with people's lives in their hands - all levels oh healthcare staff.

    I have worked several years in the NHS (IT) and have nothing but utmost respect for all levels of healthcare staff as I have seen it all. I was not office based, I was dealing with clinical systems (software not hardware) so in clinical areas, often on a bleep and witnessing situations that healthcare staff was put in for various reasons and the impact it had on them. I could never do their jobs - the stress and responsibility can not really be described unless you experience it.

    I have worked as permanent staff and I also worked as a contractor - top permanent salary I was on was 46k and that was in 2010. Top contracting rate I was on was just over 500 per day. But you can not compare unless you have done both. While contracting I was living away from home Mon-Fri (massive cost), away from family, expensive commute home for the weekends, 2 sets of bills, no sick pay no paid holidays etc etc.

    I worked in banking with their systems - MUCH easier than with clinical systems. If something was to go wrong... it was only money. Not someone's health/life at stake.

    I worked at Parliament on a perm salary - interesting experience. Crap money BUT hey..... amazing experience.

    I worked in a Job Centre as a Work Coach - hated every single minute of it.

    Working at amazing place now, crap money (just above national average which for London is not great) BUT amazing people, amazing environment, amazing location. Massive pay cut but I love it.

    Who is overpaid?

    It is really difficult to judge as you have to take skills, experience, impact, responsibility, pressures etc into account.

    It is not a simple calculation of X works 40 hours per week and gets THIS and Y works 40 hours per week and gets THAT.

    Too many factors to consider.

    For me, right here right now - I like to enjoy my work and not to have to take it home with me in my head. And funnily enough - I do often do some work after hours from home but not because I have to but because I want to as I truly enjoy what I do.


    Healthcare and rescue services should absolutely be paid way more than they do. Hope one day they will.
    • ThreadDefender
    • By ThreadDefender 7th Feb 19, 1:48 AM
    • 19 Posts
    • 26 Thanks
    ThreadDefender
    I haven't read all the posts in this thread, however, I think the OP should stop comparing themselves with others.

    These types of issues are common in all the professions.

    You will get some who earn a lot upon graduating, usually on a graduate scheme of some sort with a blue chip company. Based on my observations, the people recruited on these types of schemes are usually "trained" in corporate culture with a view to becoming future middle management material, rather than honing technical skills. By contrast, someone in a more hands on role (gaining technical skills and experience) at an SME will earn a lot less initially but learn much more, and will ultimately be gaining more useful skills that will be in greater demand much later in their career. There are also greater disparities in pay in private sector professions (in general) for people with the same skills/education/experience.

    In the private sector, you might well earn 50,000 within five years of graduating, but then you could be made redundant (or market forces come into play) and you are forced to take a massive pay cut in your next job. Career progression is also not uniform in private sector companies; which means people can go both up and down (even arbitrarily) in terms of job titles / seniority when moving to other companies.

    I would say that those working in public sector professions (medicine, teaching etc) are much better off on the whole because you have transparent, standardised pay bands. Everyone gets the same starting salary (while it might sound low, if you compare it with the highest salary in another profession, everyone gets it and so it's the minimum!). The minimum in a private sector profession could be a little as an unpaid internship or pupillage (hence the need for rich and / or well connected parents in some fields).

    In the public sector, career progression is also clearly defined and recognised even if you move to a new job in another area (again everyone benefits from this and it is known what you need to do to make the next grade). Whereas, career progression in the private sector is more likely to be influenced by office politics and cronyism than a standardised assessment of merit or achievement.

    Following people in my cohort (STEM professionals in the private sector over the last couple of decades) pretty much no-one has maintained a linear increase in earnings or seniority over the course of their careers so far (projected from their starting salary), especially women. Whereas medics do have standardised pay increases in line with career progression.

    Medicine is usually cited as the top paying graduate profession, in part because everyone gets the same salary; versus professions with greater pay differences (despite some higher salaries there is clearly a greater proportion of much lower salaries pulling down the average).

    If you look at the big picture, I'm sure you'd prefer the guarantee of your standardised pay scale over an arbitrary one, albeit with the chance of a higher salary (depending more often on luck than judgement).

    Also, public sector professions usually have greater long term job security than the private sector, and of course better pensions.
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