How does the salary as a CP compare to other jobs?

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How does the salary as a CP compare to other jobs?

Post by maven » Sun Jun 22, 2008 9:56 pm

The current salary for CPs ranges from £32,000 for newly qualified posts on band 7 to £58,000. Consultant CPs earn £56,000 for a new 8C to £100,000 at the very top of band 9, with the latter only being for a person who is at board level in an NHS trust, manages a major service and has done for about ten years!

I'd consider that to be a very well paid profession.

It is 15 years since I started my degree, which is the same as my husband who went into IT. Whilst I was in the NHS I consistently earned slightly more than he did, and I got 10 days per year more annual leave and a great deal more job satisfaction! Since I've left the NHS my hourly rate is higher than his, and demand for my input is always high too.

If I compare myself to my peers, then unless they are doing high-stress jobs, or commuting into London not many earned more than me in my consultant grade post, or running my own company. Call me easily pleased, but I love my job and I earn a good living. And when I need more money I take on a private assessment and get more money. I think a lot of my friends envy me!

Importantly, what I'd have said in all my time in the NHS is that I LOVE my job, and I think I get paid pretty well too! I was on a par with most of my graduate friends salary-wise, if not better. But most all I get to earn my money doing a job that is really interesting, varied and satisfying. And one where I am doing something useful, have a lot of autonomy, have been allowed to develop my interests and have lots of support from colleagues.

I can only judge by my own experience and that of my peer group, but a typical career path at the moment would be taking a post with on band 7, then having this reviewed or changing post to be on 8a type post within 3-5 years. So that typically means earning £40K after about 3 years from the doctorate, and I'd not complain about that at all! In fact it seems quite unfair that this tops the salaries of the most experienced social workers, OTs, nurses, and most other staff apart from the medics (and who'd envy them all the crises, on-call, dull prescribing and reviewing aspects that earn the extra ££ anyway? not me that is for sure).

The path to qualifying as a clinical psychologist is a hard one. Too hard. But they are gambling well over £100K on their decision that you are going to be a great clinical psychologist, committed to the profession, to the NHS and to the work, so it is obviously going to be a tough selection process.

My advice would be, if you aren't enjoying the process, or haven't got that amount of determination (or if you haven't got a 2:1 or better and a few years to spend on gaining experience and earning very little) and money is your primary motivator, then change path sooner rather than later. Because it is a truly formidable challenge. But once you get there, if you enjoy what you are doing to earn your money then it is worth all the hard work, from my point of view at least!! And I wish you all the best in achieving your aims.

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Content checked by qualified Clinical Psychologist on 24/01/18
Last modified on 24/01/18

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