7 Tips To Getting a Job as a Pharmacy Technician
There are an estimated 2.8 million new jobs expected in healthcare over the next few years, and more than 70,000 will be for pharmacy technicians. At Galaxy Medical College, we want to make sure that you not only get the best training possible, but we also want to help you land that dream job once you complete your education with us! Therefore today we are going over 7 tips to getting a job as a pharmacy technician.
A quality program is essential to starting your career since many states require pharmacy technicians to pass an exam and/or complete formal training. Formal training covers the fundamentals of pharmacology and working in a pharmacy as well as pharmacy law, record keeping, methods of dispensing medications, and more.
Get Your License
In some states, like California, Pharmacy Technicians need to be granted state licensure through the respective Board of Pharmacy. Requirements vary widely, so it is essential to familiarize yourself with the regulations in your state. Note: In California, Pharmacy Technician licenses are only issued by the CA State Board of Pharmacy.
To be eligible to receive a CA State License for Pharmacy Technician, the following is required:
- High School Diploma (or equivalent) and Transcripts of coursework
- No infractions, misdemeanors or felonies in any state, the USA or its territories
- No engagement in the use of illegal drugs or controlled substances in the past 2 years
- Proof of Completion of a Pharmacy Technician Training Program (like the one we offer at Galaxy Medical College)
- Live Scan Fingerprinting
Graduates from our Pharmacy Technician program receive diplomas which will qualify them for licensure from the CA State Board of Pharmacy.
Internships and externships
So many companies are looking for candidates who already have some experience. This is the huge blockage that so many students face after they graduate; having the proper training but no experience to land the job! An internship or externship provides valuable experience essential for entering the workforce as a pharmacy technician. Fortunately, career-focused schools like Galaxy Medical College often include an externship with career training. Our externship program provides students with an opportunity to practice their classroom training within a practical setting while being supervised by professionals. You can find more information about our externship program here.
Consider all work opportunities
When you start your job hunt, don’t limit your focus on just the large chain pharmacies or the small pharmacy down the road. Pharmacy technicians are needed throughout the healthcare industry. There are plenty of work opportunities outside traditional store-front pharmacies and drugstores, and you need to make sure you are looking at those options as well! These options include state, local, and private hospitals, grocery stores, and clinics. Even outpatient centers, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, mail-order pharmacies, tele-pharmacies, and nuclear pharmacies (a practice dedicated to the compounding and dispensing of radioactive materials for use in nuclear medicine procedures.)
We are one of only a few institutions that also offers Nonsterile Compounding and IV Preparation Continuing Education (CEU) Courses for Pharmacy Technicians. What does this mean for you and your job search? It means you can receive additional training that will make you stand out among other candidates applying for the same positions!
Update your resume
To have a successful career as a pharmacy technician, there are a few specific skills that hiring managers know to look for. JobFlare.com suggests that you take inventory of these essential qualities and emphasize them in your resume:
- High attention to detail
- Comfortable working with numbers
- Customer oriented
- Good with computers
- Organizational skills
- A strong commitment to ethics
- Able to work on a team
- Data entry with high accuracy
If you don’t have much on-the-job experience, you can include things like
- Prior experience working in stock rooms, customer service, or the retail industry
- Volunteer experience, especially working in hospitals or nursing homes
- Familiarity with basic medical terminology
- Any additional strengths, like being multilingual, working in a laboratory environment, or tutoring experience
If you’re still feeling stuck on what skills to list in your resume, check the job description! Hiring managers list the key qualities they’re looking for, so you can score serious points for including them.
Network and stay connected
It’s no secret that landing a great job in any career is often about who you know. Take full advantage of your externship by networking with the pharmacists, technicians, and managers. Make the most of these connections by staying in touch through social media platforms, particularly LinkedIn. LinkedIn not only helps you keep in contact with industry professionals you know, but it can also help expand and organize your professional network.
Also, make sure to use resources like the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) and PharmQD to keep up-to-date on the latest pharmacy technician news. Online communities like these provide real-life success stories, job opportunities, pharmacy technician job descriptions, and industry news that can be super helpful for you. Keeping up to date on industry news is a huge benefit for you as prospective (and current) employers will notice that you know your stuff and you love to learn!
Have you been thinking about becoming a pharmacy technician? Let us know why this would be your dream career! You can find detailed information about our program here!