Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist December2016 Contents Australian Pharmacist December 2016 I ©Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd.
with 94.1% in full time work and highest
in 2006 and 2007 at 99.4%.
Even at 94.1% in 2014 it is a hard to argue
there was an over-supply of pharmacy
graduates when only 3.3% were not
working but seeking full time employment
and the average employment level for all
graduates was 68.1%.
Former PSA National Board member and
the Director of Project Pharmacist at
Monash University in Melbourne John
Jackson is emphatic that there is no
over-supply of pharmacists.
He told Australian Pharmacist there
are still shortages in some areas --
for example rural areas. 'We never got
to an excess of supply over demand in
those areas. We may have in some parts
of the major metropolitan areas but
even that is starting to wane.
'There are a number of lead indicators
that show that any sense of there having
been, in the cities, an oversupply has
already reversed. Those lead indicators
are not just the fact that the recruitment
agencies are having greater difficulty
in placing pharmacists -- both locums
and employees -- but they are advising
people that they are going to need to
pay higher wages than they have in
the past. It is also taking longer to fill
positions,' Mr Jackson said.
At the coalface
Sue Muller from the LocumCo agreed.
She told Australian Pharmacist there
was an abundance of permanent
positions available. She had 60 full time
'It's just insane! We have to update the
spreadsheets every day to keep on top
of the vacancies. It's like putting a jigsaw
together,' Ms Muller said.
'Although people say there is an
over-supply it's not obvious to us.
I don't know whether people are moving
to other professions or doing further
study but there isn't the same enormous
response to job vacancies as there
used to be.'
Heidi Daris, General Manager of Ravens
Recruitment, told Australian Pharmacist
that if there was a glut of anything
at present, it was a glut of jobs not
pharmacists. At the moment Ravens had
up to 100 vacancies at any one time.
Vacancies had always been at about 80
before 2010 and in 2012 it was down to
about 20. Now, however, vacancies were
'at the 100 mark'.
She said vacancy rates started to increase
about 12 months ago mainly in community
pharmacy, not hospital. There were
also more vacancies for what Ms Daris
called professional services pharmacists,
with many banner groups seeking to
differentiate themselves -- the difference
being a forward dispensing model.
'We deal a lot with Terry White,
Chemmart and pharmacies like that.
They are requesting more professional
services pharmacists rather than just the
dispensing pharmacists. Not so much
with the discounters they are just looking
for dispensing pharmacists.
'When we started listing professional
services pharmacists about two years ago
we started getting a few requests and we
were struggling. We had a recruitment drive
so we've now got a good candidate pool of
professional services pharmacists. As more
of them get that experience we are starting
to be able to fill those roles easier.'
Ms Muller pointed to a greater
demand for pharmacists with good
'They don't want the type of pharmacist
who is going to be stuck in the
dispensary the whole time, even for
locum work. They want a pharmacist
who is going to go out the front and
communicate. There's a lot more of
that 'forward-pharmacist' concept and
discussing people's history.
She urged any pharmacists looking for
work to highlight their communication
skills in their resume. 'That's the first thing
employers are going to see and that's
-- Sue Muller, LocumCo
-- Heidi Daris, General Manager, Ravens Recruitment
-- John Jackson, Director of Project Pharmacist,
"It's just insane! We have to update the
spreadsheets every day to keep on top of the
vacancies. It's like putting a jigsaw together."
'We've got roles that have been sitting there
for 9--10 months. We are filling them with
locums but now we are even having a locum
shortage as well."
"The reality is, the profession might be better
off -- and it might be better for the health system
-- if the profession pushed for a phenomenal
increase in the number of opportunities for
pharmacists working in places like residential
aged care, working in GP practices."
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