A lot of Pharmacists ask me about negotiating locum rates and employed salary. Before you can even begin to negotiate you need to know your worth. How many Pharmacists know their worth? In fact how many Pharmacists even use market data? As a Pharmacist you are THE business. Your hourly rate will depend on many factors including market demand (shortage of Pharmacists in your region), the average rate in the area, availability of Pharmacists in the area, how busy the pharmacy is, staffing level, second Pharmacist, your level of experience and then personal circumstances and willingness to negotiate. 

If an average employed pharmacist is on £23 + 10% for holiday pay, + 13.8% national insurance, + 3% employer pension contribution + GPHC fees = ~£29 in actual cost to employer. So there is actually no extra cost to an employer if they paid that to a Locum. 

This is without taking into account job security, sick pay, and other in-work benefits. 

So, when a company pays locums £19 or £20/hr they’re already saving around £9/£10 per hour over an employed Pharmacist not to mention there is no headache of HR and employee rights. If you’re a locum your job is always at risk. You’re potentially walking into a nightmare branch with next to no staff so when negotiating a locum shift you need to take these factors into account.

When you breakdown the numbers its much easier to calculate your hourly rates and negotiate accordingly. 

For the latest locum and employed market data, I developed Pharmacy Revu where we collect branch and company feedbacks and these are available to see on www.Pharmacistcoop.co.uk free of charge. If you are a Pharmacist Cooperative Professional member then you will have access to much more in-depth market data. There will soon be a standalone website with much more market data and a more streamlined user interface to make it easier to leave feedback. The site relies on locums and employed Pharmacists giving regular feedbacks so please consider leaving as many feedbacks as you can regularly. It helps us create more accurate graphs for you and helps you negotiate better rates and understand your market value. Here is the link to leave a review: https://pharmacistcoop.co.uk/jobs/pharmacy-revu-feedback-form/

In short, you have a specific set of skills. There is a value to that. A pharmacy cannot legally open without a pharmacist signed in as RP so learn to understand your value, the market and be prepared to negotiate hard! You’re worth it!

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