TARGET PHARMACY: INNOVATION AND CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

Pharmacy Careers, Volume 0, 0

IF YOUR CAREER OBJECTIVE ISto work with an organization thatencourages innovation and leadershipand that prides itself on offering professionaldevelopment opportunities,then Target wants to hear from you.

"We want to be a leader in thepharmacy industry, and we wantpeople to join our organization whohave that passion and that desire,"said Pam Bernadella, manager of pharmacyprofessional services for Target."We really look for pharmacists whoare patient-focused and service-oriented.The second [characteristic] isgood communication skills. The thirdwould be those who have adaptability.The profession of pharmacy is changing,and it is important for us toinnovate and change to meet the needsof our guests."

Target, which entered the pharmacybusiness in 1962 and currently has1215 stores with pharmacies in 45states, does more than just talk aboutinnovation and leadership; it incorporatesthose qualities into everyaspect of its pharmacy services.In fact, the company's introductionof the ClearRx pharmacysystem in 2005 marked the firstmajor innovation in pharmacy inabout 50 years, said Bernadella.

The ClearRx prescription-drugpackaging system features awedge-shaped bottle that providesa flat surface so labels canbe read without turning the package.Colored rings on the neck ofthe bottle help prevent mix-ups;crucial data, including drug anddosage, are clearly printed at thetop; easy-to-read warning labelsare printed on the back of thebottle; and critical medical informationis printed on a card thattucks securely in the back andstays with the bottle at all times.

"We are very proud to have takenon this challenge. Our teammembers worked extremely hardwith designer Deborah Adler, andcame up with an innovation thatwe believe will help our guests significantly,"said Bernadella. "That isunique; you do not see innovationvery often in pharmacy. That is thetype of environment we have at Target.We are always looking for ways we canbe better and do things differently. If Ihad to pick just one attraction for pharmacists,it would be that."

IDENTIFYING, DEVELOPINGLEADERS

Target's formal recruitment programis aimed at both new graduatesand executive-level candidates, whoare sought out during campus visitsand job fairs, as well as through speakingengagements and sponsorshipopportunities.

The company also offers an internshipprogram that typically runs duringthe summer months and givesstudents the chance to gain an insidelook at community pharmacy, counseling,and prescription preparation,as well as to develop the skills thatprepare them for careers in pharmacy.It also offers a unique opportunityto learn how Target Pharmacy isintegrated into the Target store.

Beyond that, however, the companyis always looking for quality pharmacycandidates at every level, and encouragesjob seekers to visit the Target Pharmacycareer site at www.target.com/pharmacycareers to learn more aboutpositions with the company and submitresumes.

Once on-board, pharmacists haveaccess to a wide range of resourcesand support, said Janis Hardie, Targethuman resources manager. "Of thethings we feel strongly about, firstand foremost would be the trainingwe provide; the initial training whenthey sign on and also the ongoingcommitment we give to their trainingand development throughout theircareer at Target," she said.

Bernadella added, "We really differentiateourselves with an outstandingprogram for those who join our organization.We have professional trainingto help keep skills current and to makesure they continue to be experts inmedication use. We have leadershiptraining, which is critical to our environmentand culture. We are not justfocused on the job itself with our trainingprograms, but on really helping ourteam members reach their potentialand helping them be the best they canin whatever role they have within theorganization."

OPENING CAREER DOORS

Career opportunities with Target gobeyond the pharmacy. While manycome into the organization as staffpharmacists and move up through theranks to higher positions, opportunitiesalso are available outside the pharmacy.For example, Target employs anumber of pharmacists on its headquarterssupport teams in roles thatinclude recruitment and operations.

Bernadella points to her owncareer path as an example of whatTarget has to offer, saying she neverdreamed she would be doing whatshe is doing now when she first startedas a Target staff pharmacist."Opportunities came about anddoors were opened for me because ofour commitment to growth and personaldevelopment. I was fortunate tohave some great mentors andresources at Target to help me," shesaid. "What we pride ourselves on isthat, if people have the passion anddesire to explore other avenues, wehave those available to them."

As a corporation, Target also benefitsfrom a pharmacy leadership teamthat includes a mix of both pharmacistsand nonpharmacists, she added."We value having a diverse team.Having talented team members whobring different skills and views to thetable are essential for success."

THE TOOLS FOR SUCCESS

Whether in the pharmacy or partof the corporate team, pharmacistswho are part of the Target family cancount on having the tools andresources they need to succeed bothprofessionally and personally.

For example, the company offersindustry-standard resources, such asan on-line pharmacology tool toensure the most current informationis at the pharmacist's fingertips. Theyalso provide significant training inhealth care and over-the-counterproducts so pharmacists can adviseguests appropriately.

Flexible scheduling is another benefit,allowing pharmacists to workclosely with their supervisors to managepersonal needs, as well as to planin advance for family needs, vacations,etc. "Work-life balance is veryimportant to us at Target. We want tomake sure our team members are gettingwhat they need," said Hardie.

"Target, as an organization, isgrowing, and our pharmacy withinTarget is growing as well," she added."It is about [our pharmacists] growingwith us; growing with an innovative,leading company. We will providethem with the tools and resources todo that."

Ms. Roop is a freelance writer based inTampa, Fla.