Background – Expansion of the pharmacists’ role within the United Kingdom has raised the question as to whether pharmacy graduates are equipped with the professional skills and attributes they will need to fulfil such roles.
Aim – To describe the professional skills and attributes pre-registration recruiters perceive pharmacy graduates should exhibit and to establish whether final year students perceive they possess these skills and attributes.
Method – Five individuals were interviewed from a variety of pre-registration employers; 90 final year students completed a questionnaire (response 69.2%).
Results – The recruiters thought that whilst graduates possess sufficient knowledge, they show weaknesses such as inability to apply theoretical knowledge into practice and the lack of good communication and interpersonal skills. Conversely, a majority of students felt that they did possess the necessary skills to enter pre-registration training.
Conclusion – Schools of pharmacy need to ensure that students have an opportunity to develop key professional skills to assist students in securing pre-registration positions.