In 2004, only about 46% of physician jobs offered a sign-on bonus. I couldn’t imagine because during my job search the last two years, every job I looked at offered a sign-on bonus. Indeed, the number of jobs offering sign-on bonuses has increased from 46% to 76% in today’s job market.
Merritt Hawkin’s 2011 Review of Physician Incentives reports the average signing bonus offered in 2010-11 was $23,790.
I’ve had friends with bonuses as much as half of their annual salary. I, personally, received less than the average stated in Merritt Hawkin’s report.
Why the variation? Don’t forget the different medical specialties, the different styles of practice (hospital, group, private), and the different community types (metro, suburban, rural).
The good thing to remember is that in most cases, you will be offered a sign-on bonus as compared to previous years. That is, unless the job you are wanting falls under the 24% who still do not offer it in their recruiting efforts. Then you’ll definitely be getting lower than the average stated.