I believe Sovereign (now part of Banco Santander) goes for someone who is somewhat qualified, or under qualified for any given position. At least that is what they are willing to pay – on the low range of what the market is paying for any given position. However, the actual pay scales and top number on the pay scale are reasonably competitive – in other words, if there is an offer on the table, it will be a major lowball.
So, of you are desperate enough to want to work for Sovereign, you can play your cards right, make a counteroffer, and secure a decent starting salary.
Bonuses are advertised, but probably will not make a statistically significant part of your compensation package. Sovereign is just ramping up sales-oriented culture, so the only performance metric they really care about right now is attendance (and it doesn’t qualify you for a bonus). The emphasis on sales is increasing, but the bonus structure is just not catching up.
Benefits are thin, but adequate. During 2009/2010 there were major benefit reductions due to cost cutting measures. Until the bank starts making money again (scheduled for 2011) I don’t anticipate the benefit cuts to stop.