Essential Interview Questions for Potential Pharmacists

Find the Best Employees With These Proven Questions

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No matter how good a candidate looks on paper, it's essential to properly evaluate each job candidate to ensure they're a good fit for your pharmacy. They need to have the appropriate skills, degrees, and certifications, but they also need certain soft skills. From outstanding customer service to a personality that fits into your organization's culture, choosing the right person can be a difficult task.

 

In most cases, you only have one interview to get an idea of whether or not a candidate will be a good fit. However, if you look at key data, you can make an educated selection for a new employee: 

  • Find out the last places your candidate worked and chronologically go through and find out details about each job. It will give you an idea of if they are a job-hopper and likely won't be with you for more than a year, or if they have tried multiple career paths. 
  • Ask them how their former bosses would rate them and what he or she would list as the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. Look for honesty and a drive for self-improvement. Remember to follow up with former bosses as well to get their impressions of your candidate. 
  • Ask the candidate what they rate as their biggest accomplishments and find out why those accomplishments are a big deal for them. It gives you an idea of their value systems, what goals they set and how they go about achieving their goals. 
  • Have the candidate describe the team at the last three jobs he or she had, and how the company was when they left. Find out what role your candidate played in any changes. For instance, if the company went through a large merger, was the candidate part of team-building programs? That can be an indication of how he or she will work with you in the future. 
  • Think about problems you have in your pharmacy—such as difficult customers—and ask the candidate how they would deal with that problem.
  • Ask, "What are your biggest weaknesses professionally and what have you done to overcome them?"  Job candidates often turn it around and give responses such as “I work too hard.” But you're looking for a legitimate answer that highlights the candidate's self-awareness and willingness to work on flaws. Look for a candidate who acknowledges her weakness, but then goes on to explain how she is working on correcting that weakness, such as "I have a tendency to rush and forget to double-check my work. I'm working on fixing this bad habit by making a checklist that I make myself go through with every project, to ensure I checked over everything thoroughly for accuracy."
  • Ask, "What’s the biggest misconception that people have about you and how do you overcome it?" This will tell you about areas where the candidate is self-conscious or defensive. How they handle people's impressions, gossip or other issues is an important part of how they will fit into the daily routine. 

While hiring is never easy, particularly for a pharmacy position, if you do some preparation and choose interview questions carefully, you can improve your chances of hiring the right person.