Pharmacists administer medications, either from pharmacies in retail stores or from hospitals. They are responsible for educating people on the appropriate dosage to take and how often. Pharmacists can also give vaccines and flu shots.
Let's review the steps to creating a stellar resume.
How to Write a Summary for a Pharmacist
Mention your previous experience. Have you completed any research in the pharmaceutical field, perhaps during your doctoral program? Have you worked in retail pharmacies or in doctors’ offices?
Describe your greatest strength. Are you accurate and efficient in administering medications? Are you superb at communicating with patients? Do you take the time to research patients’ concerns and complaints?
Explain what you’ve accomplished in your previous places of employment. Did you train new pharmacists? Did you switch the office from a paper to an electronic system? Did you reorganize the medication cabinets more efficiently?
How to List Your Work Experience as a Pharmacist
Use reverse chronological format. List your most recent jobs first, as this shows managers how you’ve gained experience in the industry.
Use action verbs related to Pharmaceutical duties. Verbs are critical to demonstrating what you can do for the company. Review the following list for some powerful examples.
Mentored and trained 5 new pharmacists, 3 of whom were swiftly promoted based on their performance
Communicated the side effects of drugs to ensure patient awareness
Improved efficiency of the office by 39% due to a new organizational system
Administered medications with 96% accuracy
Prepared medications in a timely manner
Researched and resolved dosage conflicts with providers to ensure patient safety
Developed and oversaw a standard training protocol for new team members, which improved efficiency by 34%
Checks technicians’ work to verify order completion and validity
Managed medication inventory and completed orders with provider and insurance companies
Saved company $1.5 million by creating new technician standards to optimize dosage accuracy and dispensation
Negotiated with supplier to increase discount rate from 10% to 15%
Directed the research, preparation, and distribution of over 2,300 prescriptions weekly
Supervised team of 4 technicians and 8 pharmacists
Junior Level Work Experience as a Pharmacist
Assisted with reception duties, including fielding phone calls and informing patients that their medications were ready for pickup
Researched common side effects of popular medications in order to alleviate patients’ concerns
Swiftly calculated and dispensed the correct dosages
Proficient in pharmacy softwares that track patient and provider data, including Liberty, PioneerRX, PrimeRX, and DataScan
Performed troubleshooting assistance to resolve insurance conflicts for patients
Verified patient and physician information in a timely and professional manner
Answered patients’ concerns and questions with compassion and efficiency
Calculates correct dosages, including conversions between the US and metric systems
Prepared labels and filled prescriptions accordingly
Provided outstanding customer service, which improved customer retention by 15%
Improved sales of over the counter drug revenue by 42% by reorganizing shelves and introducing seasonal displays
How to List Your Skills as a Pharmacist
Pharmacists must be proficient in math and science skills in order to determine and administer a variety of medications, yet they must also have strong interpersonal skills. Communication is key to interacting with patients, so not only do pharmacists need to be compassionate but they also need to be strong advocates for their patients’ health.
Ability to multitask
Ability to prioritize
How to List Your Education as a Pharmacist
Pharmacists first require two to four years of undergraduate schooling -- which can be equivalent to an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. The next step is to take the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT) in order to get into a college that offers a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree. This postgraduate professional degree takes four years to complete, though some programs offer accelerated versions.
After obtaining the Pharm.D. degree, most pharmacists have to undergo two years of residency training, though this depends on the college. If you are thinking of running your own pharmacy, then you should consider acquiring a Master of Business Administration.
Even after all this, you still aren’t out of the woods! Pharmacists must also attend continuing education throughout their careers in order to keep apace with the changing field of healthcare. Generally, this requires 15-30 hours of training every two years.
Requirements for licensure vary by state but generally involve the following:
The Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam: tests your knowledge of federal and state laws surrounding pharmaceutical practice
The North American Pharmacist Licensure Exam (NAPLEX): tests your knowledge and skills in the field. This includes your knowledge of pharmacotherapy, how to prepare and distribute medication, and how to best help your patience patients
Each state then requires a written and practical exam. More information about your state’s specific requirements can be found here.
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Pharmacist Career Overview
The job outlook for Pharmacists is not expected to grow, though with more individuals receiving medications by mail, pharmacist positions in retail stores will likely be on the decline. In 2018, there were 314,300 jobs available.
Pharmacists make $128,090 per year on average. However, salaries could be as high as $162,900 depending on the location in which you work and if you have a specialty like psychopharmacology or pharmacoepidemiology.
Katerina is a junior studying English and Marketing at Johns Hopkins University. She has experience in social media, science writing, and fiction. When she isn't writing, she's hitting the gym, playing with her cats, or eating chocolate.