Investigating How Preregistrant Pharmacists Respond in Job Interviews

Angelina S. Lim, Steven T. Walker, T Bothe, H Gray, Esther Liu, Eugene Ong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


OBJECTIVE: To investigate what competencies and attributes preregistrant pharmacists draw upon in job interviews. METHODS: We used a virtual mock job interview assessment asking preregistrant pharmacists to apply for an entry-level pharmacist position. Data were analyzed using a team-based framework analysis using an inductive and deductive approach and mapping responses to the National Competency Standards. RESULTS: A total of 143 interview transcripts were included in the analysis. The top skills mentioned were leadership of self (98.6%) and communication and collaboration (96.5%). Despite graduating from a course with an integrated research curriculum, participants rarely reflected on research skills (31.5%) and no participant discussed any expertise in clinical topics or knowledge of specific professional services. Responses generally lacked specific skills and skills were spoken about broadly without relating to evidence/experience and were often not targeted to the job description. A proposal for educators aligned with competency standards was also developed based on the findings. CONCLUSION: Preregistrant pharmacists perceive experience within the workforce and communication and collaboration as the most desired by employers for entry-level pharmacy positions. Education and research competencies were seen as least useful to the job. There was a disconnect between skills gained in university and translation to practice. Academics could enhance the better preregistrant pharmacists' reflection of the skills and competencies they have developed employability by (1) providing portfolio management from the beginning of the course that collects evidence and maps to competencies; (2) integrating learning opportunities across all competencies; and (3) regular skills coaching/mentoring from practicing pharmacists to ensure students are aware of current needs in the job market.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100107
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Pharmaceutical Education
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023


  • Career
  • Competency
  • Employability
  • Graduate
  • Pharmacy

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