You Didn’t Say We Could Have a Real Pony!

Welcome to my EMR Road Warrior (RW) Journal, read about experiences I have endured over these past six years as a traveling Certified Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Consultant.  OK, so you should be wondering what this blog title has to do with EMR RW Part One: Know Your Worth and Be Prepared. Let me explain, these past few months or so, while viewing one of my favorite ‘Cable Network News’ channel, this commercial has been airing and following is the script: Two adorable little girls are seated at a table with this guy who asks the girls if they would like a pony.  Each girl apparently said yes, to one little girl the guy hands her a small little toy pony…then in walks in a real pony, to which the guy hands over to the other little girl (she is all smiles and giggles). The camera then pans over to the little girl with the toy pony and she says “Hey, you didn’t say we could have a real pony!” and the guy quips back “Well you didn’t ask”. The look on this little girl’s face was so, so sad…it just made me feel like this was the cruelest commercial I’d ever seen!

But as this commercial ends, the tag line stuck with me – “Even kids know it’s wrong to hold out on anybody…why do banks?”  Yes, this is an advertisement for a bank, but it’s also a very good scenario for you to remember when preparing to enter the EMR or Healthcare IT job market. Learn how to define your professional worth, your options, and how to properly negotiate your rate or annual salary, learn how to get what you really deserve – ask for the “real” pony! Chances are if you don’t ask for what you deserve, you will not get it!  Also be sure to only work with recruiting agencies who know how to bring the real pony…but that discussion will be in Part Two of this topic for my next blog post…stay tuned.

Your current healthcare background, technology experience and training can be converted to higher earnings.  For these reasons, it’s so important to evaluate your “worth” when you seek a job in the EMR / EHR and Healthcare IT job market:

What is your current “worth”? Complete Your Responses Here:
Education, License, Training, and/or   Certifications?
Professional Experience?
Technical Skills and Experience?
Clinical Skills and Experience?

The chart detailed below are estimated rates and salaries to provide examples of what one could possibly earn when hired as an Healthcare Information Technology (Healthcare IT) employee or consultant,  based on Educational background, Professional experience, Training, Technical and/or Clinical capabilities.  Exact Healthcare IT earnings (some may be lower or higher then detailed in this chart), must be fully evaluated with additional factors. Your expected earnings as a Healthcare IT employee or consultant may also depend on the geographic location of the hospital or clinic you are seeking to work and the margin of profit the recruiting firm you may by negotiating with.

A few completed responses of your “worth” may look like this: *Healthcare IT Consultant Hourly Rate *Healthcare IT Employee Yearly Salary
Registered Nurse (RN, BSN), 15 years experience in operating room/surgery (or other clinical department specialties). $75,000 to $95,000
Therapists; Respiratory (RRT), Physical, Occupational, Speech Language Pathologist. 1-5 years experience. $75,000 to $95,000
Registered Nurse (RN, BSN), (RN or LPN), 10 years bedside nursing experience (any clinical department/unit specialty). With EMR / EHR or Healthcare IT Training and/or Certification. $65 to $85 per hour
(plus expenses)
Up to $120,000
Pharmacist (PharmD), 10 years experience. With EMR / EHR or Healthcare IT Training and/or Certification. $85 to $100 per hour
(plus expenses)
Up to $120,000 to $140,000
Healthcare Information Technology Professional, (Associates, Bachelor, or Masters Degree in Computer Science, Information Technology), 2-6 Healthcare IT years experience. With EMR / EHR training and Certification. $65 to $85 per hour
(plus expenses)
Up to $120,000

*Healthcare IT employee or consultant salaries and hourly rates will vary based on many additional factors. This information is provided for estimation purposes only. The goal here is to get you to evaluate your own worth and to relay this information to the next Healthcare IT job recruiter that calls you about working for this “in demand” industry. Notice that individuals with EMR / EHR or Healthcare IT Training and/or Certification can expect to garner great hourly rates and/or higher yearly salaries!

Reply to this blog with your professional background, experience vs. rates, salaries you are currently earning and based on what additional factors such as what geographic location you are working. This will be a great way for us to compare and help others to know their Healthcare IT and EMR / EHR job market worth.

Let’s help each other know how to ask for the “real” pony!

About the author


Shirley Corsey

Shirley Corsey is a certified Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Consultant/Road Warrior, and owner of her own online training center for the Healthcare Information Technology industry. She is a seasoned Healthcare IT professional with over 25 years experience, with a recent career focus for the past 9 years in the EMR job market.


  • Shirley,

    Thank you so much for sharing your expertise on market worth in such an entertaining and useful way! There is no other job site offering this type of excellent information and advice.

    As an EMR Implementation Specialist with an IT Background , the consultant rates I get are just slightly higher ($10-$20) than what you have listed since I do have the training, analyst and testing background, being able to offer the full lifecycle knowledge has definitely added to my market worth.

    That said, I have also worked in the range you mentioned (or sometimes slightly below) when expanding my skill set on a new EMR system or area.

  • Rhonda…So glad for your comments and insight. From the time I read your “Day in the Life” article, I knew you could relate to what I’m sharing with my blog.

    I appreciate you sharing your rate history/experience. What other factors contribute to your ability to get your rate, both at the higher range and then at the lower range? For example was the geographic region of the work location a factor? Are you a licensed clinician? Do you have any EMR / EHR Certifications?

    What type of advice can you provide regarding how you negociate with recruiters to garner the higher rate range?


Click here to post a comment