Finding your first job can be stressful and challenging, even in a growing field like pharmacy tech where jobs are expected to increase by 20%. Since a pharmacy technician job description and job posting don’t always tell you how to get a leg up on the competition, we’ve put together a few helpful tips for being a stand-out job candidate and finding that first job.
Complete an Externship
Nearing graduation or currently job hunting? There’s no better way to build your professional network, resume, and practical experience than completing a pharmacy technician externship or internship at a hospital, clinic, pharmacy chain, or private pharmacy.
For example, you can participate in a Walgreens or CVS Health pharmacy technician externship program where you shadow an experienced technician and learn valuable on-the-job skills. Some online pharmacy technician trainings even include an externship as part of the course, so do your research before choosing a program if you haven’t already begun your formal training. Although externships/internships are often unpaid, they can be invaluable for your future.
Even the term “networking” can bring on stress and panic, but don’t make it more difficult than it should be; chances are you have an easy network at your fingertips. Start with your classmates and teachers at your school or online training institute. Develop these professional and friendly relationships and keep in touch; you don’t have to wait until you start job hunting to start building a network. Many online pharmacy technician training schools such as Career Step even provide resources like online chats, study-buddy resources, and instructor question/answer forums that make networking easy and natural.
If you have already established relationships, it’s only natural to ask people in your network about potential jobs, resume reviews, or interview practice. Who knows? A tip from a classmate or someone you else you know may help you land that first great job.
Rework Your Resume
The way you present your skills and qualifications can make all the difference. Look over your resume as if you were a potential employer and ask yourself a few questions:
1.) What does the resume look like? Too crowded? Unorganized?
2.) Can you scan it for important points in 15 seconds?
3.) Did you use bullet points and succinct language?
4.) Are there numbers and specific, quantifiable accomplishments?
Have multiple people review your resume and be your own harshest critic.
Take advantage of the internet’s vast resources by posting your resume on websites like Indeed.com as well as making sure your information is current on networking websites like LinkedIn. Make sure you have a strong online presence, but don’t ignore things posted on your Facebook and Twitter accounts. Take down any compromising photos or negative/colorful comments before your future boss lets them influence the hiring decision.
Have more tips for aspiring pharmacy technicians? What helped you get your first pharmacy technician job? Please share in the comments below!