Pharmacists are mostly content with their compensation, but only moderately happy with their jobs according to the 2019 Pharmacy Times Salary and Job Satisfaction Survey.

When asked to rate their satisfaction with their current annual total compensation on a scale of 1 to 7 (with 1 being “not at all” and 7 being “extremely”), the average response between the 580 respondents to that question was 4.74.

But, when asked to rate their current overall job satisfaction on the same scale, the average was just 4.23.

The top 3 reasons given for their dissatisfaction include workload, management, and work/life balance.

On the other hand, respondents expressed pride in what they do, with 14.7% saying it was the top driver for their satisfaction. Jessi Stout, PharmD and Owner of Table Rock Pharmacy, specifically enjoys her personal connection with her patients.

“Being able to make an impactful change in a patient’s life is the most rewarding thing I do,” Stout said in an interview with Pharmacy Times. “Patients are so thankful to have someone take the time to listen and to find solutions for them.”

Other top reasons for job satisfaction included compensation, and the joy of improving patients’ health.

Chris Chambers, a pharmacist in Albemarle, North Carolina, said he originally joined pharmacy because he loved chemistry.

"The retail setting is the place to be, more customers, more opportunities to impact their life," Chambers said. 

Of the 586 respondents, 92.5% have been licensed pharmacists for a year or more, 92% are currently employed in the United States, and 91.5% said they earned their pharmacy degree in the United States.

Nearly 40% of the respondents work in community pharmacy chain stores, 17.2% work in independent community pharmacies, and 28.8% work in health systems. These professionals are spread across the United States, including San Diego, California; Duluth, Minnesota; Greensboro, North Carolina; and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

The majority (95.2%) of respondents were employed during their first year after graduation, primarily in a chain community pharmacy. The majority of respondents said they did not receive additional compensation, such as bonuses or profit sharing within the first year (68%), a percentage which barely changed in the past year. In addition, 60.9% of respondents said they had not received additional compensation in the past year.