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Tips For Interviewing Pharmacist Candidates

Tips For Interviewing Pharmacist Candidates

Interviewing potential pharmacists for an open job position presents quite a challenge to many pharmacy owners and pharmacy managers. Sometimes the pharmacy owner or hiring manager is faced with the dilemma of needing to fill the position quickly along with hiring the best pharmacist available. Often times the potential candidate is interviewing with other potential employers and it’s important to keep in mind that, while your are interviewing them, the candidates are also interviewing you! To help you be able to evaluate the best pharmacist to fill your need, plus show you’re company as being the best employment choice for the candidate, here are some interviewing tips to consider for your next interviewing opportunity.

Interviewing Tips

  1. Be Prepared!
    Obviously you should already have a job description prepared with a list of both the job duties and responsibilities for the open position. Additionally, if you are requiring certain experience and qualifications for the position, these should be well defined prior to the interview.
    Another task that you should perform prior to the interview is check out the individual’s social media accounts. Obviously you’ve already thoroughly reviewed the candidate’s resume, but their LinkedIn and Facebook accounts can be truly enlightening. Ask yourself if their accounts are professionally done, as a poor LinkedIn account may mean that they are perhaps not the right person to work at your company.
  2. Be Yourself, But Listen!
    Act comfortable and be conversational. It is a good idea to develop some rapport with the person by inquiring about their interests and hobbies. BUT – do more listening than talking. The point is to make the potential employee relaxed and comfortable, then actively listen to them. Remember that the interview is not about you! A good rule of thumb is to talk yourself for approximately twenty percent (20%) of the time and let the candidate talk for eighty percent (80%) of the interview.
    Additionally, don’t let moments of silence during the interview make you feel the need to fill them up with “chatter” or to go of course from your topic. A hiatus that is uncomfortable can lead to diverting the interview off-topic and down the proverbial “rabbit hole”. Instead, realize that the candidate may need the silence to consider their answer, so use it wisely yourself and mentally review their answers to your previous questions.
  3. Have Your Questions Ready!
    Asking the right questions is the key. Prepare a list and then prioritize them. Make sure that you get the most important questions answered. Be flexible, but don’t allow your agenda to be diverted and your most important questions go unanswered.
    Also, it’s imperative that you never ask questions that are either inappropriate or illegal. Consider these areas to always be “off limit”:
    – Age
    – Race
    – Religion
    – Marital Status
    – Country of origin or birthplace
    – Criminal or arrest record
    – Disabilities
  4. Look For Solutions!
    A great interview tactic or practice is to provide an actual problem that your company previously experienced and then ask the candidate what they would have done to in the same situation to fix it. The best candidates will be prepared for most of your potential questions, but usually not this type of inquiry. Watch how they react and see if “putting them on the spot” makes them become flustered. Remember that some people interview very well, but are not the right choice to deal with “real” on the job crisis or situations.
  5. Learn Body Language!
    A person’s body language can sometimes tell us more about a potential job candidate than their verbal communication does. Being able to interpret a person’s nonverbal communication via unconscious gestures and movements takes practice, but is often times enlightening. Facial expressions, breathing, posture and hand gestures can often be clues of dishonesty or emotional issues. Just as important may be a person’s tone of voice. An excellent discussion on body language is available if you’re interested in learning more on Mind Tools website.
  6. Sell Your Company!
    Keep in mind that the potential candidate is most likely interviewing with other potential employers or competitors. So be ready to “sell” the potential employee on why your position is most likely their best choice. Always allow enough time at the end of the interview for the candidate to ask you questions. The best candidates may ask you one of the following questions (so be prepared!):
    – What does your company’s community involvement look like?
    – What are your company’s plans for future growth?
    – Can you describe the culture of the company and work environment?
    – Why do you choose to work for this company?
    – What are the biggest challenges the company faces?

Consider Using a Professional Pharmacy Staffing Agency

Unless your company has a dedicated HR (Human Resources) department, most of us may simply lack the experience and skills required to interview properly. Consider using an experienced pharmacy staffing agency to do the work for you! Working with the right staffing firm can accomplish two significant tasks for you:
– They can vet the potential candidates on your behalf. After all, isn’t that what a professional recruiter does for a living? Matches the right candidate to the right job?
– They can bring you potential candidates that you could not attract on your own. Most companies post their openings on the typical job boards: Indeed, Monster, ZipRecruiter, etc. and then hope that the right potential employee will come to them. The right pharmacy staffing agency will have a large pool of potential candidates at their disposal to fill your needs. For example, Healthcare Consultants Pharmacy Staffing has a proprietary database of pharmacists and technicians that has been built and updated over a thirty-one year period of staffing throughout the USA. It allows us as a staffing agency to quickly match-up the correct job candidate to the correct employer for a perfect match in almost any situation. Perhaps even more importantly, a staffing firm may have candidates that are not actively looking at the job boards, but could be available if the right job opportunity was presented to them. These “passive” candidates will never know of your potential job opportunity unless contacted by an experienced recruiter.

The point is that working with the right pharmacy staffing agency saves you both time and money. Plus results in you hiring the best candidate available. Even though they charge a fee, the real question to ask yourself is how much does hiring the wrong candidate cost you in the long run?

About Healthcare Consultants Pharmacy Staffing

Let an experienced pharmacy recruitment and placement agency find you the perfect pharmacist to fill your job opening. HCC has been a national leader in regards to pharmacy recruitment, permanent placement and direct hire since 1989. Known nationally for over 31+ years now as a “full service” pharmacy staffing company, HCC deals with all aspects of matching the correct pharmacist to the job description requirements and to the employer’s needs in every type of situation. Our in-house staffing experts have experience nationally in all 50 states with all pharmacy job types: retail, hospital, clinical and specialty pharmacies. We also offer a six month pro-rated satisfaction guarantee!

Contact us online or call us today at 800-642-1652 to discuss how we can help you find the correct pharmacist to fill you company’s needs!


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