I heard WAG 401K plan contributes $3.50 for every dollar invested into the plan. Does anyone from the inside know if this is true?
I have several WAG pharmacists as clients and I can confirm it is true. And the best feature of their excellent benefit package is the Share Walgreens program, which works wonders when the stock price continues to go up. I am so impressed by the company that I have become a customer and shareholder myself, along with specializing in helping WAG pharmacists improve the quality of their lives through objective Fee Only financial planning advice.
1) It's called a profit sharing plan. And you can only invest a small percentage of your salary. For a pharmacist making 90K, it amounts to only roughly 2K per year. Next, you multiply 3.50 per dollar invested, and that's what the company gives. Sounds great right? Well, it's lower than what most 401 K allow. A pharmacist making 90k would invest 2000 and get 7000, for a total investment of 9000. When, federal statutes allow upto 10.7K to be invested into a 401K per year. So, although WAG matches very well, overall, its employees are behind.
2) "Share Walgreens" is excellent. For every share you buy, again, upto 10% of your yearly salary, then you get anywhere from 1 to 3 stock options. However, Walgreens is a Fortune 500 company with a rank in the top 100 of all companies, and a #1 rank in their respective industry group, but when you evaluate Walgreens' benefits, Walgreens does NOT rank in the top 100 companies.
3) The management, though very efficient, and yes, among the best, especially when it came to weighing investing in the internet, most internet companies are going out of business, is a "Boy's Club". The top positions are all held by men, even though the pharmacy schools have a higher percentage of women, and are graduating more women than men. Therefore, management does not reflect the best interests of women when comes to benefits.
When you have a child, working for Merck-Medco, after working there for a period of time, you get six months, paid, maternity leave. At Walgreens, they make you use sick days and call it disability. You actually only get 6 weeks. How cheap is that?
We don't call it 401K, we call it profit sharing. Company takes out upto 2% from your paycheck before taxes and they have matched somewhere between $2.50 and 3.75 per $1 in last many years. There is no fixed amount they will match but historically on average they match about $3.00 to $1.00. That is a very good investment. Say you make about $50,000. You put $1,000 (2%) and co. will put about 3,000 to profit sharing. This is an average. Some year it may be $2.50 and some year $3.75.
This and share Walgreens are the most attractive benefit for pharmacist. That's why WAG has low turnover among pharmacists and managers. Ask any employee who is with WAG for 10 years or more. You will see a smile on his/her face.
Last year WAG contributed $3.36 for every dollar invested. (up to a specified maximum) . I can only assume that with this years record profits again, this number will go up. Also think of the extra money made on earnings and allocations of relinquishments. We make way over $4.00 on every dollar invested. No one in the industry comes close.