The road to becoming an outstanding pharmacy technician is paved with plenty of hard work and experiences throughout the years. With the U.S. Department of Labor projecting that the job outlook for pharmacy technicians will increase by 20 percent within the next decade1, the need for qualified and trained employees is only strengthening. But before anyone can officially declare themselves a certified pharmacy technician, there are certain resume inclusions that will make aspiring students and graduates stand out amidst the pack. While many might think that every pharmacy grad’s entry-level resume will likely look the same, there are certainly a number of qualifications and characteristics that employers keep an eye out for. Here are a few do’s and don’ts when it comes to hopeful pharmacy technicians trying to give their resume a much-needed boost:
Don’t be vague
When completing your resume, it’s easy to skim over some of the finer details of your accomplishments and experiences. But the truth is that applicants shouldn’t hesitate to elaborate on just what exactly their achievements are. For instance, if you’re listing the various tasks you performed during an internship, don’t gloss over the duties you carried out with generic statements such as, “Assisted pharmacists in managing prescriptions and verifying orders.” Instead, provide further detail of what you were asked to do. How specifically did you help manage prescriptions? What were a few of the duties that were involved with verifying prescription orders? If what you’re writing down is only leading to more questions, than it’s probably a good idea to comb your resume over and expand upon anything that doesn’t fully describe your qualifications.
Take a new perspective
One of the simplest ways to better understand how to make your resume stand out is by trying to exhibit the perspective of the employer of the company to which you’re applying. For starters, this means understanding that your resume is at least one of dozens that employers and HR recruiters are having to look at. This is where avoiding cliche and vague terms and phrases is especially important. Also, always make sure to keep an eye on the organization and layout of your resume. Utilizing bullet points is a great way to eliminate the pain of having to scan through a resume to read an applicant’s skills and accomplishments. It’s also a good idea to keep the contents of your resume on one page. Employers may hesitate to look over the entire two pages of a resume, unless there are enough achievements and information to justify its length.
Don’t limit yourself
Many people tend to think that applying for a pharmacy technician position requires writing a resume that only details the specific experiences that pertain to this field. A good rule of thumb to consider when creating a stand-out resume is that sometimes it’s the things that don’t relate to pharmaceutical studies at all that can catch the eye of an employer. Certain skills such as speaking a different language or any international travel can indicate to an employer that this person is ambitious and has experiences that expand beyond the typical applicants they’ve been reviewing. Essentially, if you have accomplished something or can perform a certain task that you find both interesting and useful, don’t be hesitant to include it on your resume.
The old adage of “it’s not what you know but who you know” has more truth to it than you think. Your resume’s references can be a crucial bridge to landing that pharmacy technician job, so if you have any close ties with someone related to the field, be it a professor or previous internship employer, you need to flaunt them. Always make sure that you have the consent of the people you put down as a reference, so they can prepare in the event that an employer calls upon them to ask about your relationship.
Look it over
Yes, your references, organization and actual accomplishments are extremely important for your resume. But once you’ve completed creating one, it can be easy to forget to look everything over and thoroughly edit it. Grammatical mistakes of any kind are a big red flag for employers, as it displays a lack of professionalism. This is the simplest task to perfecting your resume, but it’s also the most forgotten.
Avoid getting too personal
While it’s certainly a good idea to emphasize who you are by listing all your skills and qualifications, there’s definitely no need to go beyond that in terms of who you are outside of work. Your in person interview is the perfect opportunity to demonstrate your personality and hobbies to your potential employers, and including information on your resume that perhaps these professionals don’t necessarily care to know might rub them the wrong way before you’ve even met them.
2 “Resume Tips for Pharmacy Technicians,” by Jennifer LeClaire, Monster. http://career-advice.monster.com/resumes-cover-letters/resume-writing-tips/resume-tips-for-pharmacy-technician/article.aspx
3 “Traits of a Great Pharmacy Technician – How to Become One,” November 14, 2012. http://www.careerstep.com/blog/pharmacy-technician-news/traits-of-a-great-pharmacy-technician