21st November 2018 by Locate A Locum

What Does the Future of Pharmacy Look Like?

The pharmacy industry is constantly evolving. Even in the last year, we have seen the introduction of cannabis-derived medicines become available on prescription and struggled through the complications of GDPR. Brexit remains an unknowable vision on the horizon, and new leaps in technology have brought us the likes of ‘Max the pharmacy robot’.

If we consider all of the different technologies and changes to practices which have come into effect in the last ten years, not to mention how the internet has forever altered how we work day-to-day, we may scarcely recognise the pharmaceutical industry of the decade past. Could we have successfully predicted where we would now be in 2018, back then?

With this is mind, we thought it better to continue looking forward, rather than backwards. We asked 5 top pharmaceutical professionals where they saw their industry going in the next 5-10 years:

Dave Walker

Pharmacy Operations and Governance Manager at Boots UK

The profession of pharmacy is in a continuous state of flux. Many pharmacists find themselves still locked into the prescription medication dispensing treadmill. A few can't keep up and eventually fall off. But there are some who are able to see beyond the console and find opportunities to step off the treadmill into new positions. I see the technician role expanding to allowing pharmacists to perform more cognitive functions as healthcare embraces and values the services a pharmacist can provide. Many pharmacists will still be needed in the prescription dispensing setting but they will be performing more patient care functions as opposed to actually dispensing medications. There will continue to be pharmacists transitioning into direct patient care functions in clinics and hospitals where a pharmacist's knowledge can improve patient outcomes. Medication use and management, well patient screenings, management of chronic care patients including prescribing, hospital pre-admission and discharge, use of pharmacogenetics and pharmacogenomic prescribing are all possible areas for pharmacist involvement.

Alexandra Fulford

Digital & Social Media Strategist at Pharma Guapa

I see the technician role expanding to allowing pharmacists to perform more cognitive functions as healthcare embraces and values the services a pharmacist can provide. Many pharmacists will still be needed in the prescription dispensing setting but they will be performing more patient care functions as opposed to actually dispensing medications. There will continue to be pharmacists transitioning into direct patient care functions in clinics and hospitals where a pharmacist's knowledge can improve patient outcomes. Medication use and management, well patient screenings, management of chronic care patients including prescribing, hospital pre-admission and discharge, use of pharmacogenetics and pharmacogenomic prescribing are all possible areas for pharmacist involvement.

Daniel Garrun

Managing editor at Global Data

I think the pharmacy industry should thank its lucky stars that it hasn’t already been swept up into the world of click and collect and home delivery and swallowed up by the likes of Amazon and Google. Almost every other industry has been deeply affected and it looks like Amazon, with the acquisition of Pillpack is now on the move. And who can blame them, it’s a billions upon billions of dollar industry that essentially involves getting the right product to the right person, exactly when they need it. So the fit is obvious and I expect the traditional pharmacy concept to change almost completely. It may not be all that bad for the industry though, pharmacists have always played an incredibly important role dispensing advice and compassion. I’ve been in pharmacies that felt more like social centres, places where elderly or people with chronic conditions can go to regularly to get support. I think we’ve all seen that. That’s a very, very hard service for a retail giant to replace, so perhaps we’ll see pharmacy focus more and more on that element of the service as a way to stay relevant. I think for them do so they will need government and policy backing to keep the doors open and counterbalance any drop in floor sales, and I sincerely hope that happens.

Saam Ali

CEO at Pharmacy Mentor

"A shift is happening in Community Pharmacy for the better and I'm excited about it. And it's because of the evolution of digital health and the rapid advancements in technology that is improving efficiencies and making healthcare more convenient. In 20 years time, the pharmacy should be a station of clinical healthcare services and consultancy, with a completely automated drug dispensing process attached to it. That's the future of Community Pharmacy and the government, through the budget cuts, is making sure it happens."

Hala Jaward

Practice Pharmacist

In my opinion community pharmacy will look like a pharmacy health centre integrated with digital innovation. Also, in my opinion I think more digital technology will be invading the pharmacy market.

Jonathon Clarke

CEO at Locate a Locum

Technology should be seen as an opportunity and not a threat. Staff working in pharmacy need to adapt and embrace the change or risk being left behind. Pharmacists are skilled professionals who can offer a lot more than just medicines. Pharmacists should be entrepreneurial in their thinking and lead the government on what Pharmacy can do and not the other way around.

14th November 2018 by Locate A Locum

The Best Parts of Locum Life, as Told by Locums

Making the change from a fixed position to a freelance one can be daunting. After all, there are a lot of things to consider - your taxes, expenses, where you will find shifts - and the sense of being on your own in the management of your career can spook even the most level-headed of individuals.

However, while it may certainly feel frightening in the beginning and the career is not without its challenges, the locum life also has a generous share of perks. From flexible working hours to an ever-changing routine, there is a reason - or rather, lots of reasons - that so many pharmacists decide that the locum life is worth leaving their fixed roles for.

Here, we will be looking at just three reasons why locums love the locum life, as told by our very own Locate a Locum pharmacists:


When you’re a locum, you get to pick your own shifts - including where they are. If you’re the adventurous sort, you’ll be glad to hear that lots of locums combine their work with travel, picking up shifts in towns and cities they had previously never been to.

We spoke with Stephen McGonigle, a Scottish locum pharmacist, who told us that, with his job, he has been able to see more than just his own hometown while working. In fact, Stephen said that he had already explored most of Scotland through different stay away shifts, and has gone as far as England and Ireland.


Kufa Artwell, another Locate a Locum pharmacist, told us that he is especially fond of stay away shifts because he is able to experience new areas and environments, and the same can be said of all locum shifts.

Like we’ve said before, as a locum, you have the ability to choose your own shifts, and therefore, you don’t have to settle for the same workplace day in day out. You can switch up the scenery as frequently as you would like, whether that is month to month, week to week or even day to day. If you’re the sort of person who is turned off by the rigidity of routine, this might be the perfect way to keep your working life fresh and interesting.


The ability to choose when you work is a perk few in the rest of the working world enjoy. Being able to choose your holidays, when you start your day and when you end it, and even the amount of shifts you take on in a month is exceptionally helpful for planning not only your time, but for your family and hobbies beyond the workplace.

All of the locums we interviewed said that the flexibility which their locum career provides is one of the best parts of their career. Beyond the locums whom we interviewed, flexibility is still an extremely popular aspect of the locum career. In fact, in a recent study, 77% of locums said that it was the reason that they went locum to begin with.

What do you think? Tell us your favourite parts of the locum life on Twitter, @locatealocum.

7th November 2018 by Locate A Locum

Why Apply For Stay Away Locum Shifts

When you are a locum pharmacist, most of your shifts will be close to your hometown, or perhaps even in it. The majority of locums travel between 30 and 60 minutes to get to and from work everyday, or somewhere between 20 and 50 miles, making it similar to many other career commute times.

However, being locum gives you a certain range of flexibility. You can work when you want, as long as you want, and yes, wherever you want.

For some people, a half hour commute is enough. Others, however, like to go further afield - so far, in fact, that they won’t be commuting again until the next day, or perhaps even the end of the week. These stay-away shifts aren’t for everyone, particularly those with daily responsibilities in the home or with family, but many locums find them to be some of the most exciting and rewarding in their calendars.

Here’s just three reasons why:


Few fixed positions allow you to travel quite as much as locums do. If you are the sort of the person constantly itching for exploration, then perhaps the stay away shift will suit your runaway nature.

Locate a Locum has over 1400 registered pharmacies across the UK - meaning that you have quite a selection of different workplaces where you can pick up shifts. Locum pharmacist Stephen McGonigle told us that his career as a locum pharmacist had allowed him to see much of his home country, Scotland, as well as parts of England and Ireland as well.

New skills

Locum pharmacist Artwell Kufa told us that his favourite part of stay away shifts is being exposed to new environments in different towns.

Getting away from the hometown bubble is always good for widening one’s understanding and building upon your skills, and locum work is no exception.

For example, as a pharmacist you should already have good communication skills, but how do those skills stand up against a different accent, or sense of humour? Even if your travel has only taken you a few hours south of your normal area of work, you might find the accent, slang and pace of life to be fascinatingly different.

Stay anywhere you like

Your apartment, townhouse or little cottage in the country may not be particularly close to your local pharmacy or hospital. In fact, it might take an hour or two of commuting everyday just so you can get to your job, like 17% of locum pharmacists in 2018. With a stay away shift, though, you get to book your own accommodation, and it can be anywhere you like.

Artwell said that his commute distance is actually much shorter when working a stay away shift, as he usually books accommodation near the stores he has shifts in. That means that while he is miles from home, his commute has been significantly reduced.

Many locums might find it a pleasant change to commute by walking, or simply shortening a forty-five minute drive to a ten-minute train journey. It’s all up to you.

Of course, stay away work has its downsides, too. There’s accommodation to book, discomforts to endure, and of course, you do have to travel back home whenever the work is done, which might be some distance. Particularly, if you are more of a homebird, you could find the stay away shift more stressful than others, and not the best fit for you.

However, one of the best things about being a locum is that it’s your choice, and for lots of adventurous locums, with minimal hometown responsibilities, these stay away shifts are the perfect balance of work and adventure.

If you want to know more about stay away shifts, please do not hesitate to contact us at Locate a Locum.

21st October 2018 by Locate A Locum

Revalidation Guide for Locum Pharmacists

In March 2018, the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) introduced revalidation for all pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. The design of this new process will help to keep professional skills and knowledge up to date, create improvement pathways and demonstrate the difference you make to your community. It is also there to affirm the public’s trust in their pharmacy professionals.

Who does this effect?

All practising pharmacists and pharmacy technicians will need to revalidate in order to remain on the register.

When will I have to revalidate?

Revalidation is now part of your renewal process. Therefore, your revalidation date will be the same as your registration deadline. You can review your revalidation timeline on the GPhC’s website. Pharmacy professionals with registration renewal deadlines of 31st October 2018 will be the first group to revalidate.

What is the revalidation process?

Revalidation consists of four elements and will form part of your annual renewal process:

  • Annual renewal
  • CPD
  • Peer Discussion
  • Reflective Account


As revalidation represents a change in process, you will only need to submit four CPD records instead of nine. Two of your CPD entries must be Planned Learning i.e. a proactive decision to improve certain skills or knowledge.

Peer Discussion

Peer discussion is an effective discussion, with one or more of your peers, that encourage you to reflect on your practice. You choose who to have your peer discussion with. They do not need to be a pharmacy professional but they must have relevant knowledge or experience of your job. Only you can decide who is best for your development, but consider the following when choosing. Your peer needs to be someone who:

  • you can have an open and honest discussion with
  • has relevant information or knowledge
  • is not a close relative or friend
  • has given permission to be part of you revalidation

Any form of real-time communication, such as face-to-face, video call or over the phone, can facilitate your peer discussion. Peer discussion is particularly important for locum professionals who are more likely to suffer from professional isolation.

Reflective Account

The reflective account is designed to aid awareness and understanding of the GPhC’s standards for pharmacy professionals. Your reflective account should consist of the following:

  • An overview of your practice for the year including who the typical users are of your service
  • A statement detailing how you have met the chosen pharmacy professional standard(s)
  • One or more examples to support your statement

The GPhC will define a shortlist of pharmacy standards for each renewal year. You may find your peer discussion is a good way to identify what to include in your reflective account.

How do I revalidate?

Once you have completed you revalidation forms, you submit them via the updated myGPhC online system. For your first revalidation, you will only need to submit four CPD records. From the second revalidation year onwards, you will need to submit four CPD records plus the peer discussion form and reflective account form.

Once submitted your records, my GPhC system will check there are the correct number or types of forms. Your records may be selected, either at random or as part of a targeted strategy and reviewed. If yours is reviewed, you will receive tailored feedback which can then be used as part of your learning for next year’s submission.

You should have received a letter and an email from GPhC about the new process and invite you to register on the myGPhC online. Resources are available via the website www.pharmacyregulation.org including locum-specific forms and examples. But you can also email the GPhC on revalidation@pharmacyregulation.org if you have any questions or concerns.

14th October 2018 by Locate A Locum

HMRC Locum Campaign - What you Need to Know

The heavily criticised tax law, known as IR35, is being applied to locum workers in HMRC’s best effort to destroy the self-employed sector. IR35 seeks to combat tax avoidance by suggesting that workers who supply their services via an intermediary, such as an agency, umbrella company or a limited company, aren’t paying enough tax.

In 2017, HMRC turned its gaze to the public sector. Part of their reform shifted the responsibility for determining IR35 outcomes from the worker to the public sector employer. This resulted in the NHS’s shocking application of the IR35 rules forcing many locum nurses to leave the service due to being unable to afford to work as locums. And this does not bode well for other locum professionals such as pharmacists.

In industries where there is a great deal of legislation and working standards - such as any healthcare profession - IR35 can decide that the employer's procedures are "controlling" the worker and therefore they are working as an employee.

What does being “Inside IR35” mean?

Being inside IR35 means that the legislation has deemed you are an employee and therefore liable to pay additional tax. In the case of the locum NHS nurses, they had additional tax taken from their earnings. And because they are now classified as employees they were also unable to claim any travel expenses such as accommodation. Because of this, the nurses saw their incomes reduce by between 30 and 45 per cent.

Who is at risk from this current campaign?

HMRC is targeting public sector workers. So this may apply to you as a locum pharmacy professional. You may be at risk if you are:

  • working for pharmacies within the public sector e.g. the NHS
  • a locum operating through a Limited Company, where you are the only individual in that company.
  • a sole trader operating through an agency or umbrella company

It is the tax advantages of setting yourself up as a limited company that cause HMRC concern.

What can you do to protect yourself from IR35?

An inspection would use three main criteria for judging whether a worker is inside or outside IR35:

  • Control - how much control does your client, the pharmacy, have over how or when you work?
  • Substitution - has your client recruited you or would they accept a substitute?
  • Mutuality of obligation - is the client obligated to offer you work and are you obliged to accept it?

In the event of an inspection, it is likely that you and the engager/client will be fighting the same corner. It may be worth discussing how you work your shifts to ensure you are on the same page.

HMRC may ignore any contract in place and instead gather its own evidence of the actual working relationship.

Providing your own equipment, having full indemnity insurance and taking the work one shift at a time are all positives regarding staying outside of IR35. These and other actions demonstrate your ability to work is not dependant on the pharmacy, that you accept financial risk and that you are not engaged on a rolling contract.

You can also take a free online test to receive an evaluation of your current IR35 status.

You will likely fall outside of IR 35 if you are a sole trader operating through Locate a Locum. This is because Locate a Locum is not an agency. A locum finding work through us will receive their payment directly from the pharmacy.

Remember that tax law is complex. Please, seek professional advice if you have any concerns about IR35.

30th September 2018 by Locate A Locum

2018 Locum Pharmacist Survey

We’ve been busy looking into just what makes pharmacist locums across the UK and Ireland tick, and after surveying 150 of you, we think we have a fair idea.

Going locum can often feel like breaking out of the safety of your enclosure and into the wilderness to fend for yourself. For many people, however, the draw of this career path far outweigh the risks. And the main pull? Flexibility.

In fact, 77% of our respondents told us that they chose the locum life over a job with a permanent residence because of this reason.

Most of our locum respondents cited flexibility as their main reason for choosing this career

Why go locum?

Our director Jonny Clarke doesn’t think this is much of a surprise. He said, “The ability to choose one’s own shifts, hours and overall calendar can make a real difference for those balancing personal responsibilities with their work lives.

“For example, a new parent may find their nine-to-five schedule impossible, and someone whose children are now at school age, may need a job which works around them, rather than the other way around. Some people simply prefer to be in the driver’s seat, and others still, just enjoy variety.”

Other reasons included salary (7%) and lack of full-time work (8%).

What motivates a locum?

The survey also sought to understand more about locum work, particularly what motivates a locum pharmacist to choose specific shifts. Brand name, apparently, will no longer cut it. Only 3% of respondents said a brand name was a key part of choosing a shift, while 47% chose pay rate.

Coming in second was shift location (40%). Colleague recommendation was chosen by 4% of respondents.

*Brand name is one of the least important aspects of a shift to our locums *

Who are our locums?

So, who is the typical locum? According to our survey: a woman, between 25 and 34 years old.

The number of working locums obviously drops as ages increase, but 1% are still working as pharmacists at 65 years of age and older!

Most locums in our survey were female and aged 25-34

How do locums work?

One of the joys of locum work is that there is not one way to do it. Some may prefer to leave it later and give themselves as much flexibility as possible, while others might opt to arrange their shifts a month or two in advance.

According to our respondents, the most common time in advance to book shifts is 2-4 weeks.

Most locums book 1-2 weeks in advance

The majority of the respondents also said that they kept their months fully booked. The second most common time to remain unbooked was only 2-5 days, indicating both the availability of locum work and the way a typical locum manages their calendar.

The period of time locums remain unbooked varies greatly.

Locum pharmacy as a career

Many people get into locum pharmacy, as we have seen, because it is more flexible than fixed community or hospital positions. However, is it a difficult career move to make?

By and large, the change is relatively simple, according to our respondents. 88% cited no difficulties in becoming a locum.

Those who did experience difficulties described not having the right contacts or struggling to communicate effectively with their agents, both of which Locate a Locum had identified as problems within the pharmacy industry.

Others still mentioned the crowded job market in 2015, and the lack of support when it came to things like learning how to file tax returns and obtaining a DBS.

The overwhelming majority of locums had no difficulties making the career change

Is locum work a lifelong career? 28% of our respondents aren’t really sure. Of course, this is one of the pros of locum work - you don’t have to know! You can be a locum for as long or short as suits you, which makes it particularly useful for inexperienced graduates to build up a year or two of skills in a real pharmacy setting.

23% were planning on sticking around for 1-2 years, and 14% saw somewhere between 2 and 5 years.

14% saw locum life as their forever job, proving that while locum work can be a temporary fix, it can also be your main source of income all your life.

14% of locums saw this job as a lifetime career, and 28% were unsure


Most of our locum respondents spend between 30 and 60 minutes travelling to their shift of choice, with a small minority of 1% journeying as much as 2 hours to get there.
The most common distance was a tie between 10-20 miles and 20-50 miles.

The most common distance to travel to a shift was between 10 and 50 miles (80%)

What do you think of our results? Let us know your thoughts.

29th September 2018 by Locate A Locum

Pharmacy Show 2018: Where to Find us & what new Features we’ll be Revealing

Are you heading to the Pharmacy Show 2018? We are!

The full programme, which runs from 7-8th October, features a whopping 200 world class speakers and 120 hours of CPD accredited educational, some of which will be discussing some of the most pressing issues of modern pharmacy, including Brexit, GDPR and the implications of FMD.

Where To Find Us

Not only that, but 400 exhibitors will be exhibiting new products and services - including us!

This year, we’ll have our own stand (location: PG11) where you can come and chat to us about all things locum - where to begin, how to progress, and of course, how to get the most out of your Locate a Locum account.

New Features

As well as that, we’ve decided to showcase not one, but two brand new exciting features which we’ll be adding to our platform in the near future.

For those of you who may not be able to make it to the event, we’ve even included a sneak peak of what these are here:

Workforce Management


  • Build branch schedules in minutes. No more hours spent creating spreadsheets
  • Collect staff leave and find locum replacements all on one platform
  • Put the rota in everyone's pocket using our mobile app

Real-time Reporting


  • Gain insight into your stores expenditure. Identify which stores require the most cover and when
  • Access market rates across all your regions, preventing overspend
  • Run financial projections to prepare for busy locum periods

If you haven’t got your tickets yet, don’t delay! Buy them here directly.

For more information about the Pharmacy Show, you can visit their website.

NEC, Birmingham
7-8th October 2018

16th September 2018 by Locate A Locum

Locum Pharmacist Business Card Examples & Templates

There are hundreds of websites out there waiting to print your business card. But what should a pharmacist business card look like? And what information should it display? Here is our guide to crafting yourself the perfect business card.

Basic Information every Pharmacist Business Card Should Have

Whilst the exchanging of business cards can be symbolic and almost ritual in some cultures, the ultimate point of a business card is to inform the recipient of your basic contact information. So, to that end, start with:

  • Your name
  • Your business and/or job title
  • One, preferably more, contact methods

Your name should be the most prominent information on the card. So, either try a bold typeface or a larger font to help it stand out.

Including only one contact method makes you look aloof. Too many and you may come across as desperate. So stick with your preferred method plus one or two others. You can include your website’s URL as a contact method too.

Optional Information for Pharmacist Business Cards

Whilst it’s best not to overfill your modest 85mm x 55mm carte de visite, here are some choices for additional information a business card could include:

Pharmacy accreditations and abbreviations
Your pharmacy accreditations help you stand out so display them with pride.

If you run a website for your business as a locum pharmacist you can add the URL to your card. It’s acceptable to drop the “www.” especially if it avoids your card looking busy.

Social media profile
LinkedIn is by far the best choice. It shows that you are a professional plus that you are an active member of the pharmacy community.

Locate a Locum
Why not show that you are available to hire through Locate a Locum?

Graphics or Text Only?

The overall look of your business card is entirely up to you but it should reflect how you wish to be viewed by your peers. Using graphics, images and colour can help your business card stand out. But keep your ideas classy as you want to stand out for the right reasons.

Or, if you prefer to keep it strictly business, a text-only business card is just as acceptable. A clean and minimal design in a classic typeface will bring an elegant appeal to your email address.

Useful Tools for Making a Business Card

Here some useful websites for designing and printing business cards:

  • www.canva.com - free online graphics design tool
  • www.moo.com - design and print the coolest business cards around
  • www.vistaprint.com - watch out for their deals and special offers on business card printing

9th September 2018 by Locate A Locum

Locum Pharmacist Expense Guide

Our latest guide provides everything that you need to know about claiming expenses as a locum pharmacist.

Note this guide should serve as a guideline and not professional advice, we recommend also seeking professional advice from an account when filing expenses in your tax return.

Office, property and equipment

As a self-employed person, you need to do an amount of admin to keep on top of your accounts, expenses and taxes. And with that, you incur claimable business expenses.

You can claim for:

  • Office consumables such as printer paper and ink
  • Phone and internet bills plus software subscriptions - such as online accounting
  • Rent and rates for business premises even if you use your home as your office

You cannot claim for:

  • Buying a property to use for the business
  • Personal-only use mobile phones
  • Purchasing equipment, such as computers, unless you use cash basis accounting (otherwise equipment is considered a capital allowance).

Car and travel expenses

All locums incur travel expenses. These may vary from shift to shift and month to month depending on where you are working. The good news is that many of your travel expenses can be claimed back:

You can claim for:

  • Insuring, maintaining and running a vehicle including breakdown cover
  • Parking costs or bus, train, air or taxi fares
  • Hotel rooms and meals on overnight stays

You cannot claim for:

  • Parking or speeding fines
  • Travel to and from work

Clothing expenses

Whilst new clothing isn’t an everyday expense, you do use specialist clothing as part of being a pharmacist. A pharmacy may require you to use their branded protective clothing but you can choose to provide your own too.

You can claim for:

  • Protective clothing such as a lab coat or eye safety glasses

You cannot claim for:

  • Ordinary clothing - even if you wear it to work

Legal and financial costs

Remember that accountant who helped you set up as a self-employed locum pharmacist? Well - good news - they are an allowable business expense.

You can claim for:

  • Professional indemnity insurance premiums
  • Business bank account and credit card charges
  • Interest on business loans or hire purchase agreements
  • Hiring an accountant or solicitor

You cannot claim for:

  • Fines for breaking the law
  • Loan or hire purchase repayments

Marketing, entertainment and subscriptions

The Locate a Locum app brings all the shifts to you so have little need to market or advertise your services. However, there are some still expenses that you can claim back in this section.

You can claim for:

  • Professional memberships such as the Royal Pharmaceutical Society or the General Pharmaceutical Council - this includes your pre-registration fees.
  • Relevant trade publications
  • Advertising and website costs

You cannot claim for:

  • Gym membership or payments to political parties
  • Buying your pharmacy manager a drink at the pub after your shift has ended

For any item that has both personal and business use - such as your car or phone - you claim for the portion that is being used for your work. If all this seems too complicated, you have the option to use HMRC Simplified Expenses that offers straightforward flat rates to calculate your claimable expenses.

3rd September 2018 by Locate A Locum

New Rewards Program: Refer a Friend

Introduce a Friend and Earn £10 Each!

At Locate a Locum, we really love our locum pharmacists, dispensers and technicians. That’s why we have launched a new rewards program - Refer a Friend.

Do you know any experienced pharmacist, dispenser or technician locums who are still going through agencies to get work? Perhaps you know someone who is considering the move into locum work but needs that extra bit of encouragement? Our new rewards scheme is perfect for them.

How it Works

Introducing someone using the Refer a Friend scheme couldn’t be easier:

  • Sign up a pharmacy friend to Locate a Locum using the referral link on your account.
  • Your friend can browse through the available shifts and apply for the job of their choice.
  • After your friend has booked their first shift, you will both receive £10 as a thank you from us.

You can introduce as many friends as you like. And once they book their first shift you will both receive £10 thank you.

Where to Share your Referral Link

Each user now has a unique referral link on their account. When someone signs up via this link, we’ll know that you’re the introducer so any rewards you are due will be awarded automatically. Likewise, the new user will also receive their £10 automatically.

Here are some ideas of where you can share your referral link to maximise your earnings:

  • Add it to your email signature
  • Display it on your website
  • Use it on your social media profile pages
  • Advertise your link in a pharmacy group on Facebook
  • Create a new post or tweet inviting your friends to sign up

It doesn’t matter whether you introduce a new pharmacist, technician or dispenser to Locate a Locum, the £10 reward is still up for grabs. And your referral link is ready to start using right now. So, get sharing and start earning!

19th August 2018 by Locate A Locum

Getting Accreditations in Pharmacy

Over the years, the landscape for locum pharmacists has become more competitive. This year, there were 55,258 registered pharmacists in Great Britain alone. So it is important that locums are able to stand out in such a challenging arena.

In order to recruit a locum, a pharmacy may rely upon their accreditation training to gauge whether they have the necessary credentials required to fill the position.

So why is accreditation important?

  • Accreditation ensures that pharmacists are providing the same standards of services across the industry.
  • It provides reassurance to the employer that the locum is competent in doing their job.
  • It not only provides extra skills to the locum, it also means the pharmacy is able to offer
  • more services.
  • Lastly, there is a legal obligation to complete mandatory accreditation, without which, a
  • locum cannot receive pay.

Methods of Getting Accreditation

There are a number of ways in which accreditation can be carried out.

  • Online/distance learning - Allows locums to study around work and other commitments.
  • Live workshops - Useful for networking and gaining instant clarity from tutors.
  • In-house training - Some larger organisations offer in-house training to locum staff.
  • Self Directed - Enables the locum to take the initiative, by identifying and fulfilling their
  • learning needs.

Types of Accreditation

Below is a list of mandatory accreditations that must be completed before one can look to practice as a locum pharmacist.

  • Medicine Use Review (MUR) - The aim of this accreditation is to empower pharmacists with the training to review and improve patient compliance and experience of using their medicine.
  • New Medicine Service (NMS) - This training seeks to teach locums how to support patients that have been prescribed new medicine to treat a long-term illness for the first time.
  • Repeat Dispensing - Approximately two-thirds of items dispensed in the community are repeat prescriptions. This accreditation enables locums to dispense regular medicines to particular patients without the need for a GP’s presence.
  • Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults Level 2 - This accreditation allows the learner to recognise abuse, the steps to take and legislation surrounding this area.
  • Become a dementia friend - Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends programme is an initiative designed to challenge people’s perceptions of dementia. It is hoped that training will improve the service offered to customers living with dementia, which can make all the difference to that person’s day.

It is key to remember that the pharmacy is a business seeking to make a profit, being able to offer additional services to their customers through accreditation will be an attractive incentive for any employer.

Common Accreditations for Locum Pharmacists

Below is a list of accreditations which although are not mandatory, are highly desirable for locum pharmacists:

Flu Vaccination Training
In terms of a locums clinical expertise, it’s simply an excellent accreditation to have. It provides extra value pharmacies as well as patients.

Emergency Hormonal Contraception (EHC)
Again, not mandatory but an extremely useful accreditation to have. It will allow locums to advise and support customers on a wide variety of contraceptives and their uses.

Where to find more information

Whilst it may be argued that gaining accreditations can be costly, investing in this training will only demonstrate a locums commitment to high-quality, well-rounded professional development.
For further information on accreditation training please see:

12th August 2018 by Locate A Locum

Do Locum Pharmacists Need Pensions?

The short answer is - yes (that’s it - you can stop reading now).

The long answer is that locum pharmacists need pensions just as everyone needs a pension. The point of a pension is to have funds available to you when you retire and stop receiving an income through working. These funds replace that income.

Self-employment can affect how you save for the future. Irregular monthly income may hamper your ability to make regular monthly contributions into a pension. Plus you won’t benefit from an employer’s contribution boosting your pension fund. But preparing for retirement stills remains vital for the self-employed.

Can I Rely on the State Pension?

You will likely qualify for a state pension as these are based on your overall NI contributions during your working life. However, the state pension seems to continually decrease in relative value whilst the retirement age goes up. So, it is probably prudent to ensure you have made additional financial plans that will bolster any state pension. This is especially true if you want a lifestyle similar to the one you are accustomed to during your working life.

Types of Pensions for Locum Pharmacists

Basically, there are two types of pensions: personal pensions and company pensions.

Personal pensions

Anyone, including the self-employed, can have a personal pension. This is a type of savings or investment plan specifically geared towards long-term savings for retirement. Pensions often offer different investment plans giving you a choice on the risk level of your investments plus options for avoiding investment with unethical companies. Other types of pensions include stakeholder pensions and self-invested personal pensions, both of which involve paying fees.

You can get tax relief on your pension savings. For example, a basic-rate taxpayer will get £25 in government contributions for every £100 you pay into your pension.

Regardless of which personal pension you choose, everyone gets a £40,000 annual tax allowance on pension savings. This means you can save up to £40,000 each year without paying tax on those savings. It is this tax allowance that makes a pension the best, low-risk option for retirement planning.

Company pensions

Company pensions are only available to people in employment. Employer contribution schemes are now compulsory for all businesses in the UK. Both the employee and the company contributes a set amount, usually a percentage of the employee’s salary, into the pension each month.

However, if you operate as a limited company you may benefit from significant tax advantages when it comes to your pension (although it’s worth noting that paying directly into a personal pension may still be the most tax-efficient method of saving depending on your circumstances). You can maximise you personal tax relief by ensuring any salary you draw isn’t overshadowed by the size of you dividends. Also, making employer contributions into a company pension reduces the pre-taxed income that your business will have to pay corporation tax on.

You can find out more about whether operating as a limited company might be an option for you as a locum by reading our guide to limited companies for locum pharmacists . As with all things financial, you should seek expert advice from a financial advisor before committing to any investment.

5th August 2018 by Locate A Locum

How you get Paid as a Locum Pharmacist

You’ve finished your shift so it’s time to get paid. But what do you need to do to ensure payment is quick and easy?

Every pharmacy is different and will have their own procedures regarding paying locums. You may need to complete a form before starting your shift. You will also need to make sure the pharmacy has all of your relevant documents to ensure payment goes smoothly. It’s worth checking what the payment procedure is before the day of your shift. This is especially important if it’s a pharmacy or chain that you have not worked for before. If in doubt have an invoice prepared.

Unlike working for an agency, when working as a pharmacist with Locate a Locum, you get paid directly by the pharmacy. Payment following a shift through Locate a Locum is easy and is usually automatic. For big chain pharmacies, you don’t even need to leave an invoice. However, here is a lowdown on each of the big employer’s payment procedure:

__Boots __

  • No invoice required
  • Payment via BACS within 14 days

__Well __

  • No invoice required
  • Payment via BACS within 14 days
  • All your relevant documentation needs to be with Well for payment to occur within this
  • timeframe.


  • No invoice required
  • Payments made each Friday following your shift

Day Lewis

  • No invoice required
  • Payment via BACS on the last working day of each month (can take 3-5 days to appear in your account)


  • Invoice required
  • Complete a registration form before your shift.
  • Payments will be made 30 days after you send your invoice.


  • Depends on the independent pharmacy
  • Have an invoice ready
  • Contact pharmacy prior to the start of the shift for more information.

Pharmacy managers and employers have the option to add additional payment instructions in the ‘Additional Information’ section of the shift. It’s a good habit to always check this section before applying for the shift anyway but it might also provide you with additional, relevant information.

Whilst Locate a Locum doesn’t pay you directly we are always here to help facilitate a smooth and amicable relationship between our registered pharmacies and our locums. If you are having any trouble please contact us on 020 7859 4613 and we’ll help you resolve it.

29th July 2018 by Locate A Locum

Locum Dispensers & Technician Jobs Now Available

Locum Pharmacy Dispenser and Technicians, Assemble!

Locate a Locum have expanded by adding locum pharmacy dispenser and technician shifts to our platform. Previously, only pharmacist shifts were included, but now the app and website will also cater for dispenser and technician roles too.

This means that all locum pharmacy staff can now enjoy the many benefits of signing up to Locate a Locum:

  • Finding the perfect shift
  • Keeping track of your bookings
  • Getting paid faster
  • Maximising your income

Locum dispensers and technicans can register here now.

Employers Can Fill All of Their Locum Needs from One Place

Locate a Locum is already saving pharmacies time and money when it comes to booking locum pharmacists. By including other locum pharmacy roles, Locate a Locum just made filling you shifts even easier and faster whilst saving you money on agency costs.

Just like with locum pharmacists, you will be able search technician and dispenser staff profiles, see the availability of candidates and cover a shift within minutes. You are in control of who you want to hire - no more agency staff roulette.

Using Locate a Locum’s first-of-its-kind employer app, you will be able to post a shift and book an applicant within minutes and all from the convenience of your phone.

29th July 2018 by Locate A Locum

Locum Pharmacist Invoice Example & Template

When you work for yourself, it is vitally important to stay on top of your admin. Part of that admin is raising invoices. Whilst some pharmacies may have their own locum pharmacist invoice template, either online or in paper form, it’s important to have your own too. Having an invoice ready to issue at the end of the day can keep things efficient for both you the locum and the pharmacy.

Personal Details

Here is a basic set of data which all locum pharmacist invoices should include. The aim is to provide clear and concise information to make it as easy as possible to get paid.
Screen Shot 2018-07-17 at 11.54.26

Your details:

Basic information such as name, address and contact information.

GPhC Number:

Your registered pharmacist number.

Bank Details

Account number and sort code. Sharing this information doesn’t put you at risk as money cannot be taken from your account using them.

Pharmacy Details:

Branch name and address.

For the attention of:

This is the person who will authorise your payment such as the pharmacy manager.

Unique reference number:

Each invoice you issue will need to have a unique reference number. This could be the name of the pharmacy and the date, or it could be a sequential number from your own invoicing records. For example, “BOOTS20180601” or “INV000001”.

Date of Invoice:

This is the date that you issued the invoice.

Payment Due Date:

These are terms that you can decide on. Some larger businesses may default to a 30-days payment window, meaning they will pay the invoice within 30-days. You may also ask for immediate payment, or payment within 7 or 14 days.

Screen Shot 2018-07-17 at 11.54.54

Details of Services Performed

For the benefit of your own records and for clear communication, it’s good to add one line per day or shift. Include the following for each line:


Dates that you performed services or worked shifts on.

Hours Worked

This may be a total of hours worked that shift or you may wish to show which hours you worked. For example, “08:00 to 12:00, 13:00 to 18:00” plus the total hours worked.


This is your locum rate that was agreed with the pharmacy.


A simple calculation of hours x rate for each line.


Any expenses such as travel that you may charging the pharmacy. This will need to have been agreed in advance.

Additional Services

Any additional services you may have performed such as clinics or additional hours.

Invoice Total

A total for all the work being invoiced.

The pharmacy now has all the information they need in order to pay you. You may wish to design your own template or the one used in the example above is available to download here.

Locum Pharmacist Invoice Template

You can download your own locum pharmacist invoice template from the link below:
View Template

23rd July 2018 by Locate A Locum

Career Guide for Pharmacists

Pharmacists are healthcare professionals who are experts in medicine. Too readily, they are dismissed by the public as that person in a white lab coat who stands behind a counter and hands out prescription medicine in white paper bags. But pharmacy is a rich and varied occupation that is expanding within both healthcare and industry.

Pharmacists represent the third largest healthcare profession in the UK behind doctors and nurses. Furthermore, the pharmacist is often the first healthcare professional that the public will have contact with whilst seeking treatment. So the pharmacist’s role in the provision of healthcare in the UK is vital. It is significantly more than just handing out drugs.
The shift in the allocation of responsibilities away from GPs also means that the pharmacist’s role in front-line healthcare is growing. Combine this with the research and development of new drugs and delivery methods and constantly changing regulations and government guidelines, pharmacy is a dynamic and exciting world.

What is Pharmacy?

Pharmacy is the management and dispensing of medicines in adherence to a doctor’s prescription. The majority of pharmacists work in high street pharmacies as community pharmacists. As well as prepare and dispense medicines, pharmacists offer advice to the public over treatment options for their conditions. Pharmacists also ensure that strict guidelines regarding the secure storage and disposal of medicines are adhered to. Providing training to more junior pharmacy workers is also an important aspect of being a pharmacist.

What sort of people become pharmacists?

Pharmacists need to have a unique blend of technical and communication skills:

  • Numerical, analytical and methodical with good attention to detail
  • Organised and able to multitask
  • Great people-skills and customer service
  • Great communication skills (including listening)
  • Calm and professional attitude
    Above all, pharmacists like people and want to make a difference to their communities.

Pharmacy or Pharmacology?

There are several reasons how pharmacy differs from pharmacology. Pharmacy is an occupation that deals with the management and dispensing of medicine. Pharmacology is the study of drugs and their effect on biological systems. Pharmacists are healthcare professionals whereas pharmacologists typically work in industry developing new drugs and cannot legally practice pharmacy. Pharmacists, however, will have studied pharmacology and can progress into research and development roles.

Becoming a Pharmacist

To work as a pharmacist in the UK, you will need to first:

  1. Complete a Masters degree in Pharmacy (MPharm) at an accredited School of Pharmacy in a university
  2. Finish one year of pre-registration training in an approved pharmacy setting
  3. Pass the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) registration assessment
  4. Satisfy the GPhC fitness to practise requirements for registration as a pharmacist.
  5. Apply for registration with the GPhC

All those practising pharmacy in the UK will have completed the above. The route onto the MPharm course may differ, nevertheless, without the MPharm qualification you cannot become a pharmacist.

Masters degree in Pharmacy (MPharm)

The Masters degree in pharmacy (MPharm) is a General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)-accredited qualification that is mandatory for all pharmacists. It is a full-time, four-year course. Some universities offer a five-year sandwich degree course that includes the one-year pre-registration training.

The entry requirements for the MPharm differ from university to university. Typically, they are A-B grade A-levels (or equivalent) in chemistry plus either biology, physics and mathematics. Some universities will accept A-B grade A-levels in chemistry and biology and one other non-science subject.

The MPharm course is comprehensive. Alongside the chemistry and biology behind medicines, you will study communication, public health and the professional practice of pharmacy. You will also become practised at making the calculations necessary for preparing doses. The course is delivered via lectures, coursework, practicals and work experience.

Master degree in Pharmacy (MPharm) is a good option if you:

  • want to become a pharmacist (mandatory)
  • are interested in a career in pharmacy as both a pharmacist and a researcher

Pharmacy Foundation Degree

An alternative route into pharmacy is the Pharmacy Foundation Degree. This two-year course includes the first year of the MPharm degree in addition to work experience in a pharmacy environment. From the foundation degree, you can be accepted onto the MPharm starting with the second year. Other universities offer an integrated MPharm and Foundation course.

The Pharmacy Foundation Degree is also a great choice for those without the prerequisite A-levels (or equivalent) for the MPharm. The foundation year is there to equip students with the knowledge needed to progress onto the MPharm.

The Pharmacy Foundation Degree is a good option if you:

  • don’t meet the MPharm entry requirements
  • missed out on an MPharm place
  • are unsure if Pharmacy is for you

Pre-registration training

If your course does not include the one-year pre-registration, you will need to find a vacancy within an approved pharmacy setting. Generally, students apply for work placements before their final exams.
Pre-registration is usually 12 months in a community or hospital pharmacy. However, split registration placements are possible which mix experience between two settings including hospitals, GP surgeries, pharmaceutical companies and academia. These types of placements a much fewer in number and so may have specific entry requirements.

You may be able to secure a placement via contacts you made during any work experience that was included in your degree. Otherwise, there are many resources available to find a suitable vacancy. The organisations listed at the end of this article will provide advice and/or pre-registration training vacancies.

You will be assigned a more senior pharmacist who will be your pre-registration tutor. Pre-registration training involves regular assessments and reports so you will need to pass this training before you can progress.

GPhC Registration Assessment and Fitness to Practice

The GPhC exam consists of two parts and is designed to assess all aspects of pharmacy. The exams are held at assessment centres and both parts will be assessed on the same day. Part one is calculation questions and part two is a ‘selected response’ format covering all aspects of pharmacy including calculations. You must pass both papers.

The pass mark for the exam varies and is specific to each paper. The difficulty of each exam is assessed by a large body of pharmacists in academia. From their assessment, the pass mark is derived. The results of each assessment will be published on the GPhC’s website and written confirmation sent out to all examinees.

Once you have passed the exam you can apply to the GPhC to register as a pharmacist. The GPhC will confirm that all criteria have been met and you will be added to the register. Registration involves a fee and you cannot apply for a job as a pharmacist until you are on the register.

Working as a Qualified Pharmacist

Unemployment rates among qualified pharmacists are low as most graduates will get jobs in high street pharmacies or in NHS hospitals. For example, within six months of registration, around 88% of graduates are in a graduate-level job with 7% continuing their education (source: survey conducted by Hesa in 2015-16). The vast majority of pharmacists work in community or hospital pharmacies. Whereas between 2-4% work as industrial pharmacists for pharmaceutical companies.

Pharmacists can also work as locums - a freelance/self-employed pharmacist. Locums offer temporary cover to pharmacies such as during times of high demand for services or to cover holiday and sickness of existing staff. Locums have self-autonomy over their pay, where they work and when they work. It can also be a great way to accelerate your experience through exposure to multiple work environments.

Community Pharmacy

Community pharmacists work in independent or large retail chain pharmacists on our high streets. They deal directly with the public when fulfilling doctor’s prescriptions and advise on minor ailments. They may also offer additional services such as vaccinations, blood pressure and cholesterol monitoring plus quit-smoking clinics.

Career Opportunities

Working for established businesses, particularly the larger chains of high street pharmacies, often means access to regular training. In a community pharmacy, you will have the opportunity to develop a variety of skills alongside your pharmacy knowledge. These skills may include:

  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Influencing & negotiation skills
  • Business finance
  • Leadership & training others

There are good opportunities for career progression into managerial roles for community pharmacists. Branch and regional manager roles and head-office roles including business development and staff training are all possibilities.

You can also expand your pharmacy skills by taking a prescribing pharmacist qualification. See the Continuing your pharmacy education section below.

Most community pharmacists work retail hours which includes some evening and weekend work using a rota system.

Starting salaries following registration is typically £30,000 to £35,000. This can rise to salaries of £45,000 to £70,000 for managerial or other specialist roles.

What community pharmacists enjoy about their job

  • Helping people
  • Being part of a community
  • Getting to know patients and customers

Hospital Pharmacy

Duties for a pharmacist working in a hospital are similar to a community pharmacist in regards to dispensing medicine. However, a hospital pharmacist’s role can expand to include consulting on choices of medication and treatment plans. A hospital pharmacist works directly with doctors and nurses and therefore may be included in ward rounds. Hospital pharmacists can also work within Urgent and Emergency care units.

There is much more opportunity for clinical pharmacy within a hospital than in a community pharmacy. Observing and monitoring first-hand the effects of medication on patients, for example. There are also opportunities for running clinical trials for new medicines and administration techniques.

Some hospitals also have drug manufacturing facilities that a pharmacist may be involved with. This results in the hospital pharmacist gaining an insight into industrial pharmaceuticals as well.

When working for the NHS, you will follow a set career path with good opportunities for personal and professional growth. Training may include clinical and managerial qualifications but also being kept up to date with new drugs and procedures.

More senior positions will include specialisations in different areas of medicine. These areas include:

  • Cardiology
  • Paediatric care
  • Radiopharmacy
  • Quality assurance

The most senior pharmaceutical and consultancy roles within the NHS are significantly fewer in number, however.

Working in an NHS hospital, pharmacists will work 37.5 hours per week including evenings and weekends. Being part of an on-call work is also likely.

A starting salary for a hospital pharmacist working for the NHS is between £26,000 and £35,000. Similar roles within privately run hospitals will differ, however. The most senior pharmaceutical roles within the NHS earn between £80,000 and £100,000 per annum.

What hospital pharmacists enjoy about their job:

  • Being involved with patient care decisions
  • Greater clinical opportunity
  • Potential to have a greater impact on treatment effectiveness and therefore hospital efficiency.

Case study: Kayleigh Hackett, 26 years old, Hospital Pharmacist

I always knew that I wanted to be a pharmacist, having grown up with both a father and uncle in the profession. From high school, I gained a place at London School of Pharmacy (UCL) and finished my masters there. During this time, I worked with my uncle in his independent pharmacy as a pharmacy assistant during evenings and occasional weekends.

After university, i found it difficult to find full-time work, and so decided to try picking up one-off shifts as a locum. This allowed me to get a lot of experience in other independent pharmacies and pharmacy chains, in the Greater London area. However, London locum work is extremely competitive and I knew I wanted a full-time career, and so continued to apply for permanent positions.

A few months into my locum career, I attended an interview for a full-time pharmacist post in Caldecot Centre pharmacy and started work there a month after that. Hospital pharmacy work is quite different from community pharmacy work I am more used to, but it has been a fascinating change for me and I really enjoy the clinical side.

Tips for gaining employment for graduate pharmacists

  • Research and understand where pharmacy is going
  • Gain as much work experience as you can
  • Smile, be positive and friendly
  • Volunteer in hospitals
  • Demonstrate your customer service and communication skills
  • Take additional courses
  • Above all, be passionate!

Pharmacist professional development

Your scientific and professional development doesn't stop when you qualify as a pharmacist. Pharmacy is a constantly evolving discipline of best practice, new drugs and new delivery methods. The GPhC requires you to prove you are keeping up-to-date by undertaking regular continuing professional development (CPD). This is necessary to remain as a registered and practising pharmacist.

In addition to CPD, you can grow your professional knowledge through additional qualifications. Here are some options that will help you in your career as a pharmacist:

Pharmacist independent prescriber

The pharmacist independent prescriber qualification is a six-month course run by accredited universities across the UK. It allows a qualified pharmacist to prescribe medications within their clinical competence. The course is typically part-time because this allows for pharmacists study whilst working. The course is delivered by a combination of face-to-face classes and self-study. Becoming a prescribing pharmacist can allow for increases in salary and career opportunities.

Pharmacy Practice (PGDip)

The purpose of this course is to improve and develop pharmacy practice skills and knowledge. It includes clinical pharmacy and therapeutic management plus professional skills. It is aimed at hospital pharmacists wishing to progress in their careers but any pharmacist may take this course.

Qualified Persons (QP)

The Qualified Person is a quality assurance role in pharmaceutical manufacturing. They have the legal responsibility to ensure the quality and therefore the safety of medicines before they are released for clinical trials or into the market. In order to become a QP, you need to hold the Qualified Persons (QP) qualification.

What else can I do with my MPharm?

Industrial Pharmacy

Pharmacists working in industry help develop and manufacture new drugs. They work in multidisciplinary project teams with other scientists such as chemists and statisticians. Their job is to select the best chemical candidates that have good drug characteristics such as absorption, efficacy and ease of manufacture.

There are many roles within pharmaceutical companies suitable for pharmacists. They include:

  • Research and development - identifying and assessing potential new drugs
  • Manufacturing - drug production within strict guidelines
  • Medical information - producing documentation to support the release of a new drug
  • Regulatory affairs - ensuring that all pharmaceutical work, including clinical trials, is carried out in accordance with the applicable national and international regulation.

There are always career opportunities within large organisations such as pharmaceutical companies. Business development, sales and marketing as well as training roles may also be of interest to an industrial pharmacist.

See also Qualified Persons (QP) in the Pharmacist professional development section of this article.

Primary Care Pharmacist

An emerging role within the NHS is the Primary Care Pharmacist. The NHS is investing heavily in primary care which seeks to prevent people from becoming ill as well as encouraging healthier lifestyles.

Primary care pharmacists work in local communities supporting other healthcare professionals including GPs and community pharmacists. As a strategic role, the aim is to maximise the benefits of medicines whilst minimising the risks. They ensure the best possible allocation of medicines tailored to the needs of the local community. Primary care pharmacists also develop new treatment pathways and conduct research.

Academic Roles

Pharmacists within academic roles split their time between research and another aspect of pharmacy. Grants are available so pharmacists can apply for financial support for their research.

Clinical academics combine working in a community or hospital pharmacy role with research. So the research needs to be compatible with their main role and have a direct impact on patient care.

Academic pharmacists educate and assess the next generation of pharmacy students. Through their expertise, they shape and update the degree programme with the latest best practises and drug developments. They also conduct research and still practise pharmacy in a traditional setting.

Academic roles offer great variety for a pharmacist. They satisfy both the scientific aspects of pharmacy and the pharmacist’s desire to help people.

Regulatory Roles

Regulatory Affairs is concerned with the many, and usually complex, drug-related regulations issued by governments and international bodies. These regulations cover all aspects of the manufacture and distribution of medicines and can differ from country to country. Regulatory Affairs ensures the granting of the correct licensing for the sale of medicines for each world region.

Expected salaries for those working in regulatory affairs are on par with pharmacists working in communities or hospitals. However, there is potential to earn more with significant experience due to the potential to reduce the time to market for drugs.

Scientific Writing and Medical Writing

Scientific and medical writing is concerned with written communication such as publishing new research or drug protocols. The writer may produce articles for publication on new developments and findings, drug protocols that accompany packaged drugs, information for medical professionals or patients plus documentation for sales and marketing teams.

Without a doubt, the pharmacist can use their exceptional communication skills to excel as a scientific or medical writer.

Other pharmacy settings

Outside of community, hospital, industry and academia, there are still many settings where you can practise pharmacy:

  • GP Practices - similar to a hospital pharmacist’s role with more clinical application and direct impact on patient care.
  • Care homes - working in a care home you will oversee medicine administration, resolve medicinal issues and train staff.
  • Military - military pharmacists can be both civilian and service personnel.
  • Veterinary - whilst the biological systems are different, there is opportunity working alongside veterinary surgeons in the development and delivery of medicines to animals.

Other pharmaceutical qualifications

If having read this guide you have decided that becoming a pharmacist is not for you but you’re still interested in pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences perhaps consider these courses:

Pharmaceutical Sciences

Pharmaceutical sciences are university courses that include aspects of pharmacy and pharmacology. They equip graduates to work in pharmaceutical industry or as a pharmacy technician. This isn't a pathway for becoming a pharmacist!

Pharmacy Technician (NCQ/SVG Level 3)

Vocational qualification for people wanting to work as a pharmacy technician in a community or hospital pharmacy.

18th July 2018 by Hospital Careers

How To Make Your Locum Pharmacist Job Search A Little Easier

In today’s competitive job marketplace, it can be difficult to separate yourself from the pack when it comes to standing out as a qualified Pharmacist candidate. There are plenty of qualified candidates looking for healthcare jobs, or Locum Pharmacist shifts, and it can be difficult to find employment.

This means that you need to find new ways to stand out amongst those other job seekers, and truly stand out as the most qualified candidate for each position.

It can be even harder to stand out as a Locum Pharmacist who is seeking a part-time position while the regular employee is away for the time-being.

The good news, is that even though the job marketplace is becoming more competitive each year, there are a few tips that you can use to separate yourself and improve your Locum Pharmacist job search.

1. Review Your CV

One of the key things that Locum Pharmacists need to do to ensure that they have an easy Locum Pharmacist job search is to review their CV. A lot of Pharmacists believe that their CV is just fine the way it is, but in reality - there are plenty of ways to improve it and help you stand out amongst other job candidates.

One key way to improve your CV is to make sure that you are actively representing your experience for the jobs you are applying for.

Typically, candidates believe they should create a broad CV so they can apply to a host of healthcare jobs - but the truth to the matter is that you are missing an opportunity to stand out.

You want to review your CV to make sure that it accurately reflects your experience as a Pharmacist.

You should take the time to ensure that your experience is focused around your desire to work as a Pharmacist - and shouldn’t have unrelated experience.

For instance, if you are applying to secure a Locum Pharmacist shift, then the last thing you should have on your CV is that you “have extensive experience as a cashier.”

It sends a confusing message, and the last thing you want to do is confuse the individual reviewing your experience on your CV.

By taking a few extra minutes to review your CV to make sure it is working for you, instead of against you - you’ll stand out amongst other Pharmacist job candidates.

2. Use New Technology To Make It Easier

With each passing day, there are new ways that you can secure Locum Pharmacist jobs with ease. One such way is to utilize Locate A Locum. There are plenty of pharmacies who don’t want to spend money advertising a short-term position while their resident Pharmacist is on temporary leave, and are turning to alternative methods.

One of those alternative methods is for pharmacies to post individual shifts on the Locate a Locum platform. This means that qualified Locum Pharmacists can find unique pharmacy shifts at their own convenience.

Over 8,000 pharmacies can post shifts for qualified Locum Pharmacists to apply for, and then ultimately get hired.

Locum Pharmacists can help separate themselves from other candidates and improve their locum pharmacist job search prospects by directly connecting with pharmacies that are posting job shifts on the platform.

Using this new technology will help ensure that your locum pharmacy job search goes a little bit easier - and you can find employment prospects with ease.

3. Get In Touch With The Individual Making The Application Decision

Another way you can ensure that your locum pharmacist job search goes easier is to get in touch with the individual who is reviewing your application. In this way, you can help get a better understanding of where you currently sit in the consideration process, and understand what the consideration process is like.

In addition, you can help remind them that you are excited about the position that you are applying for - and once again highlight your experience.

This helps separate you from other candidates who submit their application and never follow-up. The great thing about the Locate A Locum platform is that you can connect directly with pharmacies looking to hire a Locum Pharmacist, and interact with them.


There are plenty of great ways to separate yourself from other Locum Pharmacists and make your job search a little easier.

Utilizing the tips we’ve mentioned will help ensure that you separate yourself from other candidates and gain access to a host of Locum Pharmacist jobs and Locum Pharmacist shifts that you can apply directly to with one-click.

In today’s competitive job marketplace - there are plenty of unique ways to improve your job search prospects, and by using the tips we’ve mentioned above you can ensure that your job search process is a little bit easier and more effective in the long run.

About the Author

Ryan Bucci is a Content Strategist with HospitalCareers. HospitalCareers is the leading recruitment platform for healthcare professionals with over 25,000+ healthcare jobs, career advice, and career insights.

6th July 2018 by Locate A Locum

Guide to Limited Companies for Locum Pharmacists

All self-employed people have a responsibility to record and declare their earnings for the purposes of tax. But how you choose to set-up as self-employed will ultimately affect how much profit you make plus how much paperwork you will have to do. So what are the two most common choices for a Locum pharmacist?

Sole Trader

A sole trader is the simplest business structure you can operate under. There are over 3.4 million sole traders operating across all industries in the UK making it the most common structure.

Benefits of being a sole trader

  • It’s quick and easy to register as a sole trader via the HMRC website. The required admin and paperwork are also less. You will need to complete a personal tax return each year.
  • Sole traders have greater privacy. This is because the public records at Company House display the personal details for the directors of all incorporated businesses.

Disadvantages of being a sole trader

  • A sole trader is personally liable for any costs incurred by their business. This means any debts could threaten the sole trader’s personal assets such as their home.
  • The taxation on a sole trader becomes less favourable when you start earning above a certain amount.

Consider Sole Trader if
Your Locum plans are temporary, part-time or you are just starting out.

Limited Company

With an estimated 1.9 million businesses, limited companies represent the second most common business structure operating in the UK.

Benefits of being a limited company

  • The ‘limited’ part means your personal assets are not liable if the business gets into difficulty - only the business’s assets are at risk.
  • Registering your company name means it is yours by law. No one else can use that business name. Sole traders do not have this protection.
  • Limited companies are more tax-efficient than a sole trader, depending on the turnover. You have access to move tax-deductible costs and allowances than a sole trader.
  • You can sell the business

Disadvantages of being a limited company

  • Limited companies are more complicated to establish and maintain and that comes at an extra cost. Most limited companies will employ the services of an accountant to handle the legal and tax side of the admin. Plus setting up a limited company also incurs a fee.
  • As director of a limited company, you also have greater responsibility. You might employ an accountant to complete your annual return but submitting it is still your responsibility.
  • There is more administration associated with running a limited company. You’ll need to consider how this might impact on your time.
  • If you have set-up as a limited company but regularly work for the same pharmacy business, you may be affected by IR35 legislation. This may result in you having to pay more tax.

Consider limited company if
You are a higher-earning Locum, work for multiple pharmacy businesses or have plans to employ staff.

If in any doubt, seek advice from an accountant as to which option is best for you. You can read more about being self-employed and paying tax in our guide to locum pharmacist tax & expenses.

3rd July 2018 by Locate A Locum

Surviving Your First Shift As A Locum Pharmacist

Day one at any job can be scary and your first shift as a locum is no exception. As a qualified pharmacist, you are no stranger to hard work and being prepared. Therefore capitalise on these strengths to ace your first day as a locum.

Before your first day

Phone ahead to introduce yourself
Hopefully, your first shift isn’t as emergency cover so phone ahead to speak with the pharmacy manager. Say hello and ask what support staff will be working the same shift as you. It will reassure the pharmacy manager plus make a good impression before you even arrive. You can also check their invoicing procedure.

Have your paperwork ready
You’ll need to hit the ground running - or at least jogging - as soon as possible on your first day. If you have your documentation on hand, such as your DBS certificate, it will cut down on unproductive admin time.

Plan your journey
Make sure you know how to get to the pharmacy plus how long the journey will take. Make a practice trip if necessary. Being late is never a good idea but even less so when a business - and patients - are depending on you.

Bring a packed lunch
In an unfamiliar setting, it’s good to have water, snacks and lunch with you. One less thing to worry about on your first day.

When you arrive

Introductions & Names
Your team might be big or small but strive to remember at least the key staff members names and roles. This will help make the day a more pleasurable working experience.

Documentation & Responsible Pharmacist
Once the documentation (that you had already prepared) is out of the way, display your Responsible Pharmacist notice. It shows confidence, professionalism and authority. Sign in to the Responsible Pharmacist register.

Read SOPs
Get cracking on learning their procedures. Ask questions if necessary - it’s ok to not know everything but it isn’t ok to pretend that you do.

During the day

Be a team player
You might the one with the fancy qualifications but you are still a member of a team. If you demonstrate a willingness to get stuck in it will impress your colleagues and manager. So answer the phone, help with stock checks and serve customers.

You will encounter challenges - awkward customers, uncooperative staff or unfamiliar procedures. Tackle each one in a calm and professional manner. All problems can be solved.

End of the shift

Handovers & follow-ups
Make sure you leave sufficient notes for the next pharmacist if you cannot handover in person. If necessary, give them a call the next day.

Don’t abandon your colleagues
Avoid leaving during a sudden surge of customers. Staying an extra ten minutes will help ease the pressure on staff and you will leave on a positive.

Congratulations - you’ve survived your first shift.

27th June 2018 by Locate A Locum

Weekend Locum Pharmacist Jobs Guide

The need to access the services of a pharmacist doesn’t stop at the weekend. So naturally, most pharmacies open six days a week with some opening on Sundays too. How does working at the weekend benefit you as a Locum? Here is our guide to weekend work.

How does working weekend shifts differ from weekday shifts?

Weekdays tend to be busier in traditional community pharmacies such as the high street chains. However, supermarket pharmacies plus bigger chain stores usually have a similar workload all week long with only Sunday seeing a lull.

As a result, weekends often have less experienced support staff on duty. This means more responsibility will fall on the pharmacist working that shift. And this may also mean they will need to pick up more menial tasks too such as the stock counts that dispensary staff may normally perform.

What shifts are available at weekends?

With traditional pharmacies typically closing on Saturday afternoons, half-day shifts are available at weekends. These come in the form of 4, 5 or 6-hour sessions. If the pharmacy opens on Sundays, 6-hour shifts are common to be inline with Sunday trading laws. However, some 100-hour pharmacies - such as those found in the supermarkets - will open for longer on Sundays and you could secure a lucrative 12-hour shift.

What are typical weekend rates?

Weekend rates are normally higher when compared to weekday rates in the same pharmacy. However, the difference in these rates depends on the pharmacy business and where it is located in the country.

How do I find weekend shifts?

Locate a Locum provides weekend shifts. In the search criteria, you can select ‘Weekends Only’, ‘Saturdays’ or ‘Sundays’ in the ‘Days Of Week’ field to find the right shift for you.

What are the advantages of working at weekends?

One of the benefits of being a locum is that you get to choose where and when you work. Demand for weekend shift work is high in some areas as pharmacies can struggle to fill their half-day shifts. Working at the weekend can significantly boost your income and your reputation as a hard-working professional. Choosing to work weekends can also give you greater flexibility in your home life by allowing you to take time off during the week instead.

Interested in what weekend work might be available to you? You can search our available weekend shifts here.

12th June 2018 by Locate A Locum

Guide to Locum Pharmacist Tax & Expenses

If you are a newly qualified pharmacist and are considering your options, the idea of becoming a locum is a consideration. One question that is often asked is about locum pharmacist tax and the way in which a locum pharmacist interacts with HMRC in relation to their work. This guide will answer the questions you might have and also explain what locum pharmacist tax expenses are available to claim.

How Do Locum Pharmacists Pay Tax?

A locum pharmacist works in a self-employed capacity on a temporary basis. Normally a contract will be made between the pharmacy and the locum which will outline the expectations within the role and what will be expected from the locum pharmacist. It will also outline the fact that a locum is considered self-employed and as such, HMRC requires the individual to file their own taxes annually. This means that whatever the locum pharmacist agrees to be paid for their services, they must deduct taxes from that amount themselves, and ensure that it is submitted to HMRC in a timely manner. This will also be true for the payment of national insurance (NI), which will be a requirement in any locum pharmacist tax calculation.

Deductible Expenses

There are many different expenses that a self-employed person such as a locum pharmacist can claim for when they are working, as long as the expense has a receipt and that it is held on to in case it needs to be proved in the future. Among the items that can be deducted as locum pharmacist tax expenses are:

Travel Expenses

Travel expenses including the cost of upkeep for a vehicle to take you back and forth to work inclusive of petrol costs and insurance (to the portion that it is being used for work purposes), the cost of parking, cleaning the vehicle and anything else that is necessary to be able to drive to work.

If you do not have a vehicle, the cost of the bus or train will be expensed with a receipt.
A home office for administrative purposes and the equipment needed to keep track of invoices and send invoices, including a computer and printer.

Professional Subscriptions

Professional subscriptions such as pre-registration fees, and membership of professional bodies – such as the Pharmacists’ Defence Association, the General Pharmaceutical Council and the Royal Pharmaceutical Society – can be claimed back.

Professional Indemnity Insurance

Personal indemnity insurance payments which are a requirement to hold under most agreements between pharmacies and locum pharmacists can also be tax deducted as a necessary expense.
In general, any other payment that must be made in order to meet the expectations of the job, including but not limited to a professional clothing allowance.

It is best to have a review by a certified accountant when you file for your first year of taxes as a locum pharmacist in order to ensure that what you are claiming for is allowed and maximised within HMRC allowances. After that it would be possible to follow the example that the accountant created and file your own locum pharmacist tax annually. You will be required to keep up with NI payments, which is another reason to seek out advice in the early stages of your locum pharmacy career.

Overall it is a pretty simple requirement of filing tax and maximising expense deductions but always remember to save the receipts for every allowance that you claim. You may or may not need them in the future.

6th June 2018 by Locate A Locum

Locum Pharmacist Insurance Guide


Locum pharmacist insurance is something that is a requirement under the terms of certification, so every locum pharmacist must be aware that in order to work they must have personal indemnity (PI) cover on themselves before taking on any contract as a locum. The question is, who covers the insurance and is a locum pharmacist covered under the PI insurance of the pharmacy they are contracting at?

This article will act as a guide to locum pharmacist insurance – who covers it, how much is needed, and any other aspect of PI insurance that a locum pharmacist should be aware of. After reading this you will be more informed as to why it is a good idea to know that every potential liability situation is covered, and how PI insurance plays in to that.

Pharmacy Personal Indemnity Cover

It is true that most pharmacies will have their own personal indemnity cover which should in theory cover any person working for them through direct employment or in a contracted nature, but the difference between the two classifications is extreme. On the one hand, a locum pharmacist is working for a pharmacy in the same way as their employee would be, but the fact will always remain that they are not a contracted employee and are in fact a self-employed sub-contractor. If something does happen which requires an insurance claim to be made, it would be inevitable that the insurance company would pore through the facts surrounding the incident and could easily find that their terms and conditions were not adhered to with regard to the locum pharmacist, and as such the incident would not be covered by them, leaving the locum open to be sued.
An example would be if the PI insurance company determined that the standard operating procedures of the pharmacy were not followed by the locum pharmacist, which led to the occurrence being claimed for. In this instance the locum pharmacist would be personally liable for whatever occurred, so it makes sense to have yourself insured against this possibility.

How Much PI Insurance Cover Should I Have as a Locum Pharmacist?

The normal cover for personal indemnity insurance for any professional service provider is in the region of £5 million; this level of coverage will allow for any type of claim to be settled within the maximum coverage of the insurance. Most locum pharmacists will say that it is worthwhile to sign up to the Pharmacist’s Defence Association (PDA) for a number of reasons, not least of which for the immediate £5m coverage and for cover of any legal costs up to £500k. It is worthwhile to look into this option as it is highly recommended across the industry.

Insurers Offering PI Insurance to Locum Pharmacists

If you choose not to sign up for the PDA and want to find an insurance company to directly provide you with PI Insurance, you can check with the National Pharmacist’s Association for a list of current offers. Another way is to contact your local insurance provider, or your car insurance provider, who can either offer you a package deal or put you in contact with an insurance company to fit your needs.


It is clear that a locum pharmacist has a real need to take their insurance cover seriously. It would not be feasible to expect the pharmacy insurance to cover all eventualities, which is really what insurance is for. By gaining your own locum pharmacist personal indemnity coverage, you will be able to go about your role with the confidence that you are covered if the worst case scenario happens.

30th May 2018 by Locate A Locum

Average UK Locum Pharmacist Rates & Salaries Revealed

Our new research, which took into over 30,000 shifts across the UK, has uncovered the average, highest and lowest locum pharmacist rates across the UK.

Highest Locum Pharmacy Rate?

If you’re planning on switching your full-time pharmacist job for locum work, you might consider moving to Canterbury - at £22.05 the city has the highest average pay rate for locum pharmacists in the UK.

Canterbury, England topped the list at £25.83 per hour, followed by Aberdeen and St David’s (£24.44 and £24.31, respectively).

Lowest Locum Pharmacist Rates

The lowest averages came from Northern Ireland. The five lowest average pays came from this part of the world, with Armagh coming in last at £15.25 per hour. The best city in Northern Ireland work was Bangor, with an average pay of £17.07.

34 of the 69 cities reviewed, including Cardiff, Leeds and Stirling, were revealed to have above average pay rates.

Surprisingly, the city of London was not one of them.

In fact, London ranked at 62 out of the 69 cities, just above the lower Northern Irish pay rates. This is likely due to an oversupply of locum pharmacists, keeping competition high and pay rates low, and is a concerning statistic for those living and working in the 24th most expensive city in the world.

Locums everywhere, however, should find the data of interest when deciding which jobs that they would like to sign up for. The map below plots the locations with the highest and lowest rates in the UK:

Locum Pharmacist Rates Map

Average Locum Pharmacist Salary

This research also helps deduce the average salaries for locum pharmacists. For locums who work 37 hours a week, the average UK salary is £42,424.20 per annum, while the the highest of these comes from Canterbury at £49,696.92 per annum.

This is almost double the salary those living in the city with the lowest hourly pay rate can expect. The average salary in Armagh comes in at £29,341.00 per annum. The top average from Northern Ireland is still only 66% of Canterbury’s average, at £32,842.68.

Find your city and average hourly rate below:

St Davids24.31
Newcastle upon Tyne23.08
Kingston upon Hull21.69
St Asaph21.19
Brighton & Hove20.50
St Albans19.94
City of Westminster18.04

Sign Up Today

Sign up with Locate a Locum today to earn the best rates in your area!

24th May 2018 by Locate A Locum

GDPR Update

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) sets a new standard for how companies use and protect EU citizens’ data. It will take effect from May 2018.

At Locate a Locum , we worked hard to prepare for GDPR, to ensure that we fulfil its obligations.

Here’s an overview of GDPR, and how we prepared for it at Locate a Locum:

What’s GDPR?

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) is a comprehensive data protection law that came into effect on May 25, 2018. It replaced existing EU Data Protection law to strengthen the protection of “personal data” and the rights of the individual. It's a single set of rules which governs the processing and monitoring of EU data.

How Locate a Locum prepared for GDPR

Reviewed all data handled by Locate a Locum
We completed this by completed an audit on our business activities impacted by GDPR and implemented requirements to achieve compliance.

We updated our Privacy and Cookie Policy:
Strong data protection commitments are a key part of GDPR’s requirements. Our updated
privacy and cookie policy outlines how we use, store and manage your personal data.

We appointed a Data Protection Officer
We’ve a dedicated Data Protection Officer to oversee and advise on our data management.

We coordinated with our vendors
We reviewed all our vendors, finding out about their GDPR plans and arranged similar GDPR-ready data processing agreements with them.

Trained all staff on the requirements of GDPR and Locate a Locum’s data privacy procedures.
All staff know what GDPR is and the process to follow in the event of a data breach.

If you would like more information or have follow-up questions please reach out to us at info@locatealocum.com

30th April 2018 by Locate A Locum

New Feature Alert! Get ready to welcome your locum diary

Managing your locum shifts has never been easier, thanks to our brand new feature, you can keep your locum life on track.

Locate a Locum have now launched an exciting new diary, designed specifically to help you manage your bookings. It allows locums to track their time and work more effectively, and employers to know immediately whether a locum is available to work.

The locum diary enables users to view their schedules a month at a time. Enter events to your diary, such as marking days you are unavailable or are on holiday, enabling you and employers to keep track of when you're free to work, no more unwanted calls when you're not available.

diary unsaved

Additionally, you can enter external shifts to your diary, including shift times and rates. Any shift booked through Locate a Locum will automatically populate your diary, making managing your time and finances simple.


Stay on top of your workload

CEO Jonathon Clarke said, “I know from personal experience how complicated your diary can become when you are a locum, and so this diary feature was a natural fit with our app. We hope that it will help all users organise their time better, estimate their earnings more easily and generally stay on top of their own workload.”

diary full

Avoid double bookings

For locum users, our diary feature should alleviate any possibility of making the all too common mistake of double booking - saving you both face and time.

It should also put you in better control of your finances, by showing you the total earnings of your shifts that month. You can now immediately see whether you need to take on more shifts, or can afford to make a pricy purchase - we’ll do the maths for you.

Check when locums are unavailable

Previously, it was impossible for employers or our locum coordinators to know when a locum might be unavailable or on holiday, but with the release of the new locum diary, this problem vanishes.

Now employers and locum coordinators can check that locums diary to see what days they are available to work, if you're unavailable they will know not to contact you and to arrange alternative locum cover. No more unwanted calls when you're on holiday!

Another exciting feature of the locum diary for employers is the ability to immediately find alternative cover. If the locum you are looking at is not available, the Locate a Locum app will recommend other, available locums in the surrounding area. Helping employers find the cover they need, in less time and with minimal stress.

The diary feature is available on both app and website now.

app store

play store

18th April 2018 by Locate A Locum

Why Work As A Locum Pharmacist

Working as a locum pharmacist is an ever- increasing popular career choice for pharmacy graduates with now more than 10,000 pharmacists acting in this role across the UK.

Here at Locate a Locum we regularly recieve questions from pharmacists considering the career move. The most frequenly asked question is if working as a locum pharmacist is the right thing to do. This blog post helps to consider both the aspects of the advantages and disadvantages of working as a locum.

What are the advantages of working as a locum pharmacist?

Some of the obvious draws to working as a locum pharmacist include the ability to work when and where you want. By being able to set your own schedule and only take on shifts that fit the days you are willing to work, you will always be able to control the amount of free time you have while you are working as a locum in a pharmacy.
Being able to claim expenses against taxes is another advantage for someone working as a locum pharmacist, given that an employee filing taxes does not have the same ability to deduct for every expense that impacts their working ability and environment. You will make more money at the outset, but you have to remember that part of that money must be set aside to cover your taxes and national insurance contributions which will still be mandatory.
If you like to meet new people then being a locum pharmacist is a great way to do so, working in new teams and new areas, providing different types of prescriptions to different people.
You will have an opportunity to learn more about the working environment of a pharmacist and the different variables that it might hold, since you will be working within more than one pharmacy and within different types of standard operating procedures. This will help you to develop an overall knowledge of the business which could be invaluable to your career development.

Some disadvantages of being a locum pharmacist

Sometimes the fact that you are not part of the team atmosphere is a disadvantage for locum pharmacists, but it really depends on the type of person the locum is and if being part of an established team is important for them. It is clinical in the way the contracts start and finish, with the need to leave new friends which you might have made at the pharmacy and be open to starting again ongoing. This can be difficult for maintaining working relationships if that is something which is important to you. A locum pharmacist has to be willing to start again in a new environment as many times as is required to fulfil the contracts that they gain, so forging ongoing relationships would not be a the forefront of your plans.
Learning new sets of standard operating procedures can be difficult for some people and is a must for any locum pharmacist. The ability to take on a new procedure and learn quickly is paramount for any good locum, and it is important to be able to quickly gauge the requirements of the new contract and abide by them.

The Final Word

The best reason to work as a locum pharmacist is to maintain the self-autonomy over your career – deciding where you work, when and for what rate of pay. There are requirements for the role that might not fit you as a person, but if they do, then working as a locum pharmacist can be an excellent career option.

26th March 2018 by Jonny Clarke

Brand new Pharmacy Employer App helps fill locum shifts and book pharmacists easily

Pharmacy employers will now find it even easier to advertise and fill their locum shifts with the launch of our brand new app.

First of its Kind Pharmacy Employer App
After seeing great success with our locum app, which allowed locum pharmacists to pick and choose their shifts with ease, we here at Locate a Locum decided that it was only fair to give Pharmacy Employers on the other side of these shifts the same treatment.

Screen Shot 2018-03-27 at 15.11.28

The new app, which is now available for download from both the Android and Apple App stores, allows those searching for locum pharmacists to post a job for a single or multiple branches to the 4000 registered locum pharmacists using Locate A Locum. They can then review applicants’ profiles to decide the right candidate, and check in on their other live, pending and booked shifts - all without ever leaving the app.

Effortlessly Fill Shifts

"It really was time to make it easier from the pharmacy employer’s point of view,” Chief Executive Jonathon Clarke said. “We wanted to cut out all the hassle of phone calls and agencies, and put power into the pharmacy employer’s hand - literally. We hope to see a much better flow of bookings on the app.”

Even when you aren’t actively using the app, you will receive push notifications to let you know when someone has applied for your shift, so that you can quickly and effortlessly fill your schedules.

There currently are 1200 locum pharmacy shifts at 8000 pharmacies across the UK available on our app.

Click here to download from Apple Store

Click here to download from Google Play

3rd March 2018 by Locate A Locum

Locate a Locum vs Pharmacy Locum Agency

Using a locum pharmacist agency? Is it worth it?

If you own or manage a pharmacy – you must have asked the question before?

Today it is all about locum cover

Why would a pharmacy need a locum pharmacist? How do you source a locum pharmacist? Where does Locate a Locum come in and does using a locum bring benefits to your pharmacy?

Why would a pharmacy ever need or book a locum?

Sooner or later everyone that owns or manages a pharmacy will be in need of a locum pharmacist. Whether it’s because the regular pharmacist is sick, or they have decided to take themselves off to sunny Spain for a few weeks. Many pharmacy veterans will agree:

‘You never know when emergencies can happen and just as you are ready to jet off on holiday you may be in a position of needing a locum pharmacist.’

It’s also worth pointing out that it’s not just absences or emergencies where locums are used in pharmacies. Some pharmacies also use locums to double down on their enhanced services. For example, doing some nursing home visits or even just scheduling in MUR's. This can bring in a lot more income for the pharmacy, so it’s always worth considering hiring a locum for perhaps even one day a week as extra cover.

How do you source a Locum?

Traditionally there has been two methods of managing locum pharmacist cover available to pharmacies:

Grow your own Locum Bank

By attending networking events and collecting locum pharmacist cards you can grow your own bank of locums that may be available for cover. When a gap or shift arises then it is usually phoning, emailing or texting locums to see who is available. The benefit of that is no up-front costs to handle, however additional stress can be placed on pharmacies especially when it comes to covering urgent locum requests such as emergency sickness.

There is also the chance that you may not be successful in finding cover and some pharmacies have incurred large fines from the NHS for not fulfilling their contract.

Use a Locum Pharmacy Agency

Historically Pharmacies have relied on locum agencies to assist them with their locum pharmacist cover. Locum Agencies can have a larger locum bank than pharmacies and as such the chances of covering a locum request is greatly improved. Locum agencies can assist with all the compliance aspects of hiring a locum such as determining the locum pharmacists right to work. The downside of this convenience is the upfront costs to pharmacies and pharmacies can pay anywhere from £20-30 for assistance with a single locum day for cover. There is also limited information as to the locum may be and sometimes it can be pot luck if the pharmacist will perform a good job.

Is there another solution?

What if your pharmacy does not have the resources to manage locum pharmacist cover or the monetary funds to outsource to a locum agency?

Enter Locate a Locum

Locate a Locum is an online platform and mobile app that directly connects your pharmacy to locum pharmacists in the area. As of January 2018, there are over 8000 pharmacies and 4000 locums using the platform.

Simply post a shift and the locums within the area will be notified. When a locum applies for a shift, you can review their application and accept them for the shift. Locate a Locum fully automates the matching of pharmacists to pharmacies and because of this we do it faster, more efficiently and reliably than any other locum provider on the market.

Emergencies? We can get you cover sorted within seconds.

Long term absences? We have a range of locum options to best suit your needs.

Join over 8000 pharmacies across the UK benefitting from the use of technology to manage their locum pharmacists.

See how Pharmacy Plus managed to save over 4 hours on call time each month

See how Meadows Pharmacy managed to solve their locum shortage problem in the North West

Sign up now

31st January 2018 by Locate A Locum

Our top 10 pharmacy blogs of 2017 as chosen by 'YOU" (our locum pharmacists)

Top 10 Pharmacy Blogs of 2017 as chosen by YOU (our locum pharmacists)

First of all a huge thank you to all the people who helped making 2017 a great year for us!

We have put a lot of effort in improving our website, our app and our overall service. In December 2017 we asked our locums their favourite pharmacy blogs across the year and below is the results.

1, A Locum Pharmacist App, Built By Pharmacists

In case you are not aware of it yet - we've built an easy to use App which makes finding and booking shifts more simpler than ordering a pizza. Download the app for free. Get the Jobs. Simple.

2, Helping Pharmacists Getting An Affordable DBS

Prior to working as a locum pharmacist you may need an enhanced DBS check. This blog gives you all the finer details on this important check. Check the article , write a us an email and we will take care of the rest.

3, Guide to Dementia Friend Training

Dementia friend training is another must have for locums to access the majority of work with our pharmacies. This blog details how and why you should get your dementia Friend Training - check it out today and be a Dementia friend!

4, Information About Indemnity Insurance

As a pharmacist, you are going to need indemnity insurance. As a locum pharmacist there are even more reasons to have one in place, besides common sense for sure. We collected some information and put up some recommendations about specialised pharmacists insurance to give you a better overview.

5, Need Help With Your Paperwork - Accounting Advice By Crunch

Whilst working as a self-employed locum pharmacist, it can be difficult to get your tax affairs in order. Together with our friends at Crunch we have helped a lot of locums to get rid of this problem. Help yourself and eliminate the stress with simple, easy online accounting.

6 Tips How To Find Even More Locum Pharmacist Work

Still have some free time that you'd love to fill with work? Check out these 6 tips on how to find an get booked for even more shifts at Locate a Locum!

7, All You Need To Know About Locum Smart Card

A locum Smart Card is another essential need for locums to access more shifts. This blog details exactly how, why and where to get the locum Smart Card.

8, Why Pharmacists Should Be On LinkedIn

We have put together a 4 step guide on how to possibly use LinkedIn as a pharmacist. Check it out and don't miss the opportunity to boost your network!

9, A Guide For Newly Qualified Locums

Fresh pharmacy graduate? No real clue what your next steps should be? We have created a special guide for pharmacy graduates/ newly qualified pharmacists at the beginning of their careers. Take a good look at it and let us know if there is anything we can help you with!

10, How do I get paid when working through Locate a Locum?

One of the most asked questions by locum pharmacists using our service. Read carefully as we all know - money is where friendship ends.

Do you like our top 10 pharmacy blogs? Subscribe here to stay up to date!

Check our our locum jobs site to apply for over 5000 locum shifts every month.

24th December 2017 by Locate A Locum

New Year's Resolutions That Pharmacists Will Definitely Stick To

New Year's Resolutions That Pharmacists Will Definitely Stick To

How Do We Make 2018 Better Than 2017? We Follow These Simple Steps!

Stop Requesting For Shits In Your Town Or City

Spelling's quite important. Do you realise how many people write the word 'shit' instead of 'shift?' We see it on social media all the time, and it's a mistake that features heavily when we receive communications to our office. On average, we receive 3 requests for locum shits, every week. We will probably never have shits in your area. That goes for locum coordinators too. Stop asking us to post shits for you. Royal Mail won't allow it and we don't have time to do this. Sorry

Get Fitter Than Ever!

What's your excuse? Sure, you travel 3 hours every day either side of your 9 hour shift. And you sure, you want to see your family, friends and dog. An yeah, you want to relax & watch tv. And maybe you have kids. But what other excuse do you have for not getting to the gym every day for an hour? Try butt clenches in the car. Don't be afraid to do a few press ups and situps while counselling patients. Can you do some star jumps while checking scripts? Of course you can! Don't let a lack of time be an excuse for not exercising...

Actually finish the CPD Training That You Start

How many courses did you start last year, full of enthusiasm and with the attitude of someone who truly wanted to be the greatest pharmacist on the face of the planet? Imagine what you could achieve if you actually completed one of them? Imagine the sense of accomplishment! Go get yourself some professional accomplishment in 2018!

Stop Drinking

Everyone should stop drinking in 2018. Or maybe you should stop drinking any more than one glass of wine with dinner every night. Or maybe you could stop drinking on week nights altogether. I might start by only drinking on a Friday and Saturday. Actually, scrap all of that, terrible idea. I once tried Dry January and failed within 20 hours of it beginning!

Listen To Your Patients

Stop wondering who did their hair. Stop wondering how they were allowed to leave the house wearing that jacket. Stop wondering what that smell is. Stoping laughing at their children. Listen react and then you can judge them after they leave.

Practical Footwear

Ladies, stop wearing heels in the pharmacy. Yes, they look lovely and do wonders for your posture, but they're quite dangerous when you're running around, and you know that your feet will be sore in the evening. Guys, you don't need £90 shoes that will give you blisters and will see you slip across the tiles. Get yourselves some black or brown trainers for 2018, thank me later.

Eat a Proper Breakfast and Lunch

Put down the bacon butty and stop eating sweets for lunch! Stop drinking 8 cups of coffee and get some water in your life! Do you remember what fruit's like? Remember having it as a kid? Get yourself a packed lunch, take a banana and some oranges. Only eat rubbish on a Friday, like me!

Don't Eat Yellow Snow

Apparently there are still those among us who do in fact eat yellow snow. It's not healthy. If you need to, get one of those bumper stickers to remind you to stay away from the yellow stuff.

Book your shifts for 2018 right here!

22nd December 2017 by Jonny Clarke

That's A Wrap, Locate A Locum - Jonny Clarke

2017, That’s A Wrap!

And just like that, it’s nearly 2018!

2017 has flown in! And we’d like to take this chance to thank everyone who has played their part in helping us to achieve what we have in this whirlwind of a year!

To our Locate a Locum staff, who are the backbone of the organisation. I offer my deepest of thanks for your hours upon hours of hard work, that has helped me to achieve my dream of building the UK’s largest locum pharmacist booking platform! Thank you for the laughs, the beers, the Boojum and the advice on how we could continually improve our website and the services that we provide.

To my business partner Michael, and to our board of directors, thank you for your hard work and guidance, through the rough and the smooth!

Our success would not have been possible without the input of Lynsey Cunningham, Joh Ferris, those at Ulster Bank and the staff at the E-Spark facility in Belfast. Their mentoring has helped, not only myself, but also my staff, to develop both professionally and personally over the past 18 months. And to Julie Thompson from KPMG, who helped us to put together our first ever marketing strategy.

Every one of the 4500+ pharmacists who have registered on our platform, I thank you for your patience, your help in developing our website and for the hours & shifts that you have worked through our website. We’re working hard over the festive period to implement the changes that you have recommended, and we’re determined to do even better for you in 2018.

To the 8000 pharmacies that regularly use our website to advertise and fill locum shifts, thank you for your ongoing input, helping us to deliver a technology platform that has been positively received across the UK. We have a lot of new features en-route for 2018 and we can’t wait to show you what we have in store!

This time last year, we had a staff of three people, and we worked in a shared office space. This has been one hell of an experience.

I’m looking forward to 2018. But I’m more so looking forward to a break over the Christmas period with my new wife Natalie. Without whom, none of this would be possible!

Signing out for 2017,


(While you're here, book some locum shifts!)

12th December 2017 by Locate A Locum

What Happens When I Cancel A Shift? Locate A Locum

What Happens When I Cancel A Shift?

Life happens. People get sick and extenuating circumstances can lead to pharmacists cancelling shifts. However, there are always consequences to this. And the consequences aren’t limited to your relationship with Locate a Locum.

A Pharmacy May Close

We’re all aware of the ‘responsible pharmacist’ legislation. If a pharmacy can’t open, they incur a fine of up to £10,000. The pharmacy can lose a day of trade and the other staff in that premises can lose out on a wage. Patients also suffer and prescriptions are not administered.

The Pharmacy May Not Hire You Again

Working in a pharmacy on a regular basis as a locum is the dream. You become familiar with processes and you get to know the patients. If you cancel a shift, the hiring pharmacy may not take you back into that premises. Pharmacies need a reliable workforce.

Your Locate a Locum Profile Is Affected

When you apply for a shift with Locate a Locum, the hiring manager can see your professional profile. This has many advantages as the pharmacy can see your accreditations and can see the number of shifts that you have worked. However, they can also see what shifts you’ve cancelled or failed to turn up for. Not only may the pharmacy who you cancelled on not hire you again, but other hiring pharmacies may not want to take you on either.

Your Own Personal Financial Loss

The average daily rate for pharmacists working through Locate a Locum is £216. If you cancel your shift for whatever reason, you lose out financially, as well as contributing to the previous factors that we’ve laid out.

How To Avoid Cancellations

If you book shifts well in advance, make sure to keep an eye on your diary. We can all be forgetful, so your Locate a Locum diary can keep you informed of what shifts you have coming up.

Only book shifts in places that you’re comfortable communing to. You may see an excellent rate in a pharmacy that’s 50/60 miles away, but closer to the time your enthusiasm for travel may have diminished.
When you book a shift, you cannot start to negotiate a rate. A successful application occurs in the understanding that you will work for the shift at the rate that was advertised.

Our Official Cancellations Policy

If an Applicant is unable to attend a Session which has been booked, it must notify the Pharmacy immediately. Cancellations outside a 28 day timeframe may be subject to a cancellation fee of £25 per session. If the applicant does not notify the pharmacy, the cancellation fee is increased to £50 per session.

You can find out more information on our terms and conditions page.

How to book more shifts?

Check out our locum platform and start booking more locum shifts in the areas which suit you, and at rates that you’re happy with!

8th December 2017 by Locate A Locum

Get Ready For The Snow - Locate A Locum

Get Ready For The Snow!

I know what you’re thinking, ‘why are Locate a Locum providing advice on the weather. They don’t have Barra Best working for them!’

This isn’t necessarily pharmacy related, but it does get cold, the snow does fall and sometimes we miss work because of it. You all know about the responsible pharmacist regulation, and if you can’t turn up for a shift, the pharmacy can get a fine of up to £10,000.

So, what measures can you put in place to help you service the cold of winter and increase your chances of making it to work in piece?


De-icer is your best friend this winter. We’ve all been there, unable to start driving until your windscreen and mirrors defrost. I’ve waited up to 20 minutes on this before, and I’ve been very late for work. Luckily, nobody’s life is at stake if I’m late. Remember to look at your back window and wing mirrors!

Keep a flask of hot water in your car

Do not pour hot water over your windows, it can crack them. That would be a disastrous start to the day. I’ve been stranded in traffic for hours on end because of the snow, and a cup of tea or coffee would’ve been appreciated. At the time, I had no flask in the car, but since then I’ve never travelled without one. It can be a life saver if you break down and you have to wait for assistance.

Get Yourself a shovel

Nothing wakes you up in the morning quite like having to stand in the cold and shovel the snow out of your drive way. Most roads in major cities and towns may receive some gritting during a cold spell. Your biggest challenge may be getting out of your drive. I live at the bottom of a hill near the mountains. Some locals gather together and help to keep our rod clear and gritted. Your local neighbourhood groups may need assistance in doing something similar, and you’ll have reap the benefits.

Only apply for shifts that you can travel to with ease

Train services can be affected if there is a snowfall. If you’re relying on trains, beware of booking shifts in areas that you need a train to travel to. Remote areas of the country may be cut off from civilisation, be careful when applying for shifts which are in areas that are prone to a heavy snowfall.

Keep warm clothing, a blanket and some food in your car

Like the flask point from earlier, you should keep some essentials in the car. Some cereal bars, water and possibly some fruit could help you to w\de out a break down during a cold snap. You should also keep a thick blanket, hat and gloves in the boot, just in case you break down. I’ve recently bought a portable phone charger, which will stay in the car.

Remember, apply for Locum shifts today on booking platform!

20th November 2017 by Locate A Locum

Employer Website Update, Locate A Locum Blog

Thomas Mulholland here from Locate a Locum, giving you an update of some recent developments that we've made to our service to make your life much easier!

Locate a Locum has currently made several major changes and improvements to our bookings, and locum management platform, to make booking Locate a Locum locums both easier and faster for you.

We have also added the following features to speed up your booking process overall and to allow to manage your shifts much more easily;

  1.  Multi delete of shifts function - no one ever likes to reject a candidate, so you can allow the system to do this for you. As you delete shifts, your applicants will be notified that they have been unsuccessful on this occasion, allowing you to maintain good and timely communications across the locum pool.
  2.  Export  - Fully compatible with Excel, allowing you to work in integration with your internal systems
  3.  Applications and booking filters - You can now filter your shift applications and bookings easily by date or branch using the filter feature in your account view.

If you have any additional questions, feel free to call me at the number below.

If you would like to book a call for a more detailed run through of features on the platform, email me and I will find a time and date that suits you.

Kind regards

Thomas Mulholland MSc
Recruitment Operations Manager
Locate a Locum

Locate a Locum serves over 8000 UK pharmacies, with over 4000 locums registered to work through our platform.

17th November 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locate A Locum, Scaling Up & Moving Forward

Locate A Locum, Scaling Up & Moving Forward

Like a caterpillar becomes a butterfly, a small start-up can become a high revenue turning business. Locate a Locum has become such a butterfly. A finely tuned and well-oiled butterfly at that!

Three years ago, local pharmacist, Jonny Clarke, build a basic website that made life significantly easier for locum pharmacists and pharmacy owners alike, when it came to sourcing and filling temporary shifts.

Now, we’re a business with over a dozen members of staff, including co-founder Michael Budden who is spear heading the technical development of our software product, catering to both locums and pharmacy owners alike.

We spent over a year in the Ulster Bank-funded E-Spark location in Lombard House, where we availed of some of Northern Ireland’s finest business mentoring from Lynsey Cunningham and John Ferris. We’ve now graduated to the Gas Works, beside Deloitte and other local technology hotshots.

Moving on came at the opportune time. It coincided with the launch of our new mobile app. The app allows pharmacists to source and apply for temporary work within 50 miles of their location. We have 2,400 active app users with a further 2,000 that we’re transitioning away from our traditional desktop site. An industry that was once averse to technological change, has embraced a platform that solves the traditional human resourcing headaches.

We’ve certainly disrupted the pharmacy recruitment market throughout the UK. Traditional agencies are struggling to keep pace with our rapid, digital hiring methods and low costs for pharmacy owners. Our technology allows for online identity and documentation checks that can greatly reduce time for hiring managers.

Our next move will be into the pharmacy recruitment sector in the Republic of Ireland. It will require a further investment in staff, something that we have spent a year preparing ourselves for, having proven our model and worth within 8,000 UK pharmacies. After that, Europe? The United States?

We’re aiming high, but we aren’t rushing. We’ve learned to plan ahead while remaining adaptable and learning from our customers and our mistakes.

For all you budding entrepreneurs out there, building a scalable business isn’t about gaining large volumes of customers at speed. Rather, it is being able to build a solution that works at the heart of your client’s needs, and being able to offer the same levels of service to your oldest customer, as your most recent.

If you're a pharmacist who wants more locum shifts, check out our bookings platform. If you're a pharmacy owner, get in touch to see if you're eligible for a free trial of our new software!

31st October 2017 by Locate A Locum

Saam Ali, Pharmacy Mentor, Locate A Locum

Pharmacy Mentor, Locate A Locum

We take a back seat this week and leave you in the reliable hands of Mr Saam Ali! Saam is the CEO, and all around good guy, behind the Pharmacy Mentor Brand.
"Hi, Pharmacy Owners. In this short article, I’m going to explain how the new platform, Pharmacy Flu Jabs, can help the public find your flu jab service quickly and easily.
Pharmacy Flu Jabs helps you market and expose both the free NHS and private flu jab service you offer to those people who are looking for a flu jab service online. We know people are searching for this on Google because every single year at the time we begin to offer the flu jab, there is a big spike in search results for the term “flu jab”, as seen on Google trends. Our platform helps you connect with these people quickly and easily.


You can create a free listing for your pharmacy which will allow you to provide basic information about your services but for only £20, you can add a premium listing, which will:

Further increase your service visibility - When a person lands on Pharmacy Flu Jabs, their location will be automatically determined on our map and will pull up pharmacies in the vicinity that provide the flu jab. That person can also search for pharmacies providing the flu jab in other locations, and very importantly, if someone searches for a flu jab service in your locality on Google, then your business will show up on the first page, increasing the likeliness of them using your service.

Allow you to provide the public with more information - Give people the ins and outs of your service, pricing, real-time photos, times when you’re vaccinating and much more.

Give you the ability to feature your pharmacy - Being featured in your area will make you stand out more and further increase your visibility. And, a premium listing will

Allow you to view analytics for your pharmacy - Understand how many people have viewed your listing online and who might be viewing in real-time.

For a more detailed understanding of how the platform works and how to create a listing on the site, please watch the video below.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us at pharmacyflujabs@pharmdata.co.uk."

Until then guys, book your next shift on our Locum Platform!

5th October 2017 by Locate A Locum

A Locum Pharmacist App, Built By Pharmacists

The New Locate a Locum App!

A Locum Pharmacist App, Designed By Pharmacists

More locum shifts, a speedy application process, more chance of being successfully booked and all from the power of your phone. For free.

Sound good?

We’ve worked hard for several months now with pharmacy professionals and some of the UK’s best software developers, to bring you one of pharmacy’s most advanced pieces of software, that even your great, great grandfather could use.

Our app makes it easier for employers to post shifts, meaning that you’ll have more choice than ever before in relation to where and when you work.

[video width="1250" height="550" mp4="http://blog.locatealocum.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Max-Launch-Vid-Blue.mp4" loop="true" autoplay="true"][/video]

You can apply for available shifts in your town or city with one tap of your finger. Better yet, you can apply for as many shifts as possible without fear of ever being double booked.

For a limited time only, we’re offering locums a £10 cash bonus when you sign up to Locate a Locum using the app, and work your first shift!

And remember, anyone who works 10 shifts through our locum pharmacist app, will receive a £50 cash bonus!

Why would you search on several websites and speak to a variety of recruitment agencies when you can use one mobile app and map out your career with one finger? Download the new Locate a Locum app today, for free!

5th October 2017 by Locate A Locum

My Year In Pharmacy - Rebecca Maguire - Locate A Locum

My Year In Pharmacy

The urban dictionary defines 'Adulted' as: the act of being an adult; to do things your parents would normally do, but they aren't around, so now you have to do them whether you know how or not.

A year on from qualifying, two years on from pre-reg and three years on from graduating, the thought in my head lingers..."I have properly 'Adulted.'

Firstly we can no longer say 'I'm newly qualified' or retreat to the safety of a Pre-Reg tutor. That's right you're an RP and your name is visible for everyone to see.

On that note I would like to congratulate all the newly qualified pharmacists; you too, somewhere in the next 365 days, will also feel much more adult...you can only use the 'I'm newly qualified' gig for so long.

I've been very lucky to have gained a wealth of experience in the past year, experience which has allowed me to learn things they do NOT teach you in university. Working as a locum with Locate a Locum in various independent pharmacies, in different communities across the U.K. and Ireland has allowed me to taper my skills and combine the knowledge of other pharmacy professionals to help me up to this point in my career.

The main things I've learned is that having a good support system of colleagues is a great tool to safe and successful practise. All staff play a key part in the safe and successful running of our shops and dispensers deserve a bloody medal!

It's important to ask questions and consult other healthcare professionals and it's always better to get a second opinion, so never be afraid to ask.

I now work as a relief pharmacist for a very well known company which has an amazing support system and great learning opportunities for staff. I am always learning and always enhancing my skills to be the best pharmacist I can be.

As our role evolves and changes due to mounting pressures on the heath system, it's important to keep learning, keep striving to be the best we can be. Most importantly, we must always have our patients' care and safety at the centre of all we do...

Just a year ago, Rebecca was a locum with Locate a Locum, working throughout Northern Ireland and having a blast! If you want more locum shifts in your town or city, check out our locum platform!

18th September 2017 by Locate A Locum

The Journey So Far - Locate A Locum

We’re all striving for improvement, whether it’s within our working life, our sporting setup or our familial relationships. How can I run faster tomorrow than I did today? How can I be more informed for my next exam than I was for my last? How do you turn a ‘bedroom business’ into the market leader for temporary pharmacist recruitment in the UK, and beyond?

Locate a Locum was born out of an understanding that there was an easier and more efficient way to source and book temporary work. Jonny Clarke, pharmacist and CEO, knew that innovation and improvement were possible in the job market which would benefit both candidate and employer. His knowledge of the pharmacy market allowed him to implement such innovative thinking into a niche recruitment market, with immediate success.

Jonny was once a locum pharmacist who, like thousands before him, travelled the country to hand out business cards in the hope that pharmacies would contact him to fill temporary shifts. It seemed that the pharmacy recruitment sector was left behind in an ever more digitised world. Using his entrepreneurial talents, he developed a basic website where pharmacies could contact him directly with available shifts. The website was working. Was this a scalable model? Could he help other pharmacists using the same type of software? If he was going to, he’d need a team to help. Enter, Michael Budden.

Michael had worked in Randox, where he acquired the title of Head of Design at the tender age of 26. Michael knew how to sell a concept and he understood the importance of building a brand that people could trust. His background in software development helped to build the original Locate a Locum website. Michael had the faith to leave his job and join Jonny on the journey to revolutionise the temporary recruitment market.

Jonny and Michael were accepted into the Entrepreneurial Spark programme and secured office space which was funded by the good folk at Ulster Bank. Not only did the venue provide office space, free wi-fi and phone lines, but Ulster Bank and E-Spark also provided first class business mentoring, delivered by Karen McCallion, John Ferris & Lynsey Cunningham. We know how much phonelines and internet access costs, but you could not put a price on the relationships we developed with our mentors.

Having made immediate wins, with locum bookings coming in daily, the boys (The Original 2) quickly grew their team with software developers, marketing and recruitment professionals. What was a team of 2, has now grown to a closely-knit group of 12 people, each of whom has a personal interest in the development and success of the Locate a locum journey. Our software is unique to the temporary recruitment market, connecting pharmacies to pharmacists in specific geographical locations in a matter of seconds. Our new mobile app has launched and has gotten phenomenal reviews and feedback from pharmacy and pharmacist alike.

It’s not just the day to day staffing which has helped us to exceed our goals. Our board have influenced us every step of the way. Comprising of 5 seasoned professionals from the worlds of healthcare, business & technology. We've also received mentoring from Mrs Julie Thompson, Head of Marketing from KPMG.

In September 2017, we outgrew our office in the E-Spark and have relocated to the Gas Works facilities in Belfast. In two years, our team has grown from 2 to 12. From 1 locum pharmacist working through our website, we now have 3200 pharmacists registered on our new booking platform, accessing 5000 shifts from 8000 clients every month. These numbers are good, but continued innovative thinking will help us to eclipse them within a matter of months.

We might need a new office again pretty soon.

(To all who have helped out along the way, or anyone hoping to help in future, come along for a drinks reception in our new office on Friday 22nd September in Unit 25, Cromac Avenue. Belfast BT7 2JA. 5:00pm)
If by chance you have not registered with us yet, you’re missing out on 5000 locum shifts every month. I’ll make this really easy for you, you can register right here!

20th August 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locate A Locum, Invest NI

Belfast software firm, Locum Match Ltd provides a website which helps pharmacies across the UK to find locum pharmacists at short notice to help cover leave or staff illness.


Its website helps pair thousands of pharmacists around the UK with over 8,000 pharmacies. Impressively, the company has already secured business with the UK’s four largest pharmacy chains; Boots, Well, Rowlands and Lloyds.

As part of a three year growth strategy the company is creating new jobs and moving to a ‘fully online’ service through its mobile app and website.

Commenting on the investment, Moira Loughran, Invest Northern Ireland’s Eastern Regional Manager said: “Locum Match has developed impressive software that is making it a key player in the UK’s medical recruitment market. In a commitment to growth it is working with Invest NI to support it to create new jobs, invest in R&D and undertake marketing activity to grow business in Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland.”

In a commitment to growth it is working with Invest NI to support it to create new jobs, invest in R&D and undertake marketing activity to grow business in Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland

Moira Loughran, Invest NI

“Locum Match sees innovation as crucial to the growth of its business. With Invest NI R&D support it is developing its business into a ‘fully online’ resource with improvements to its website and a mobile app,” added Moira.
“Our support is also helping the company exploit emerging opportunities in GB and ROI with marketing assistance to implement a customer acquisition strategy and develop the existing website.”

Jonny Clarke from Locate a Locum, who runs the business with co-founder Michael Budden, said: “The idea for our software came from my experience as a locum pharmacist trying to source work when I left university. I developed a website to advertise myself as a locum, which has now grown into a business which offers pharmacists the opportunity to find work with some of the biggest pharmacy brands in the UK and Ireland."

“This week, we will launch an app version of our website. It is a simple in your pocket tool which we hope will appeal to busy pharmacists across the country."

"With Invest NI’s support for R&D we intend to take our website and mobile app to the next stage of development and create a more efficient and friendly user experience."

Jonny Clarke, Locum Match
“With Invest NI’s support for R&D we intend to take our website and mobile app to the next stage of development and create a more efficient and friendly user experience. We also plan to grow both our in-house technical team and management team which will enable us to concentrate on winning new business."

“Our aim over the next three years is to have the largest pool of locums in the UK registered on our website.”

The support offered for this project is part financed by the Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme for Northern Ireland 2014-2020, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund.

If you're a pharmacist or pharmacy owner, check out the Locate a Locum website or give the team a call on 020 7859 4613

16th August 2017 by Locate A Locum

How Do I Get Paid When Working Through Locate A Locum?

Locum Pharmacist Rates & Getting Paid

There aren’t many people who work for the fun of it. Let’s be honest, we care about salary and hourly rates, and we want to know how our employers are going to uphold their end of the employment contract. This is especially true for part time and temporary workers, such as locum pharmacists.

What’s important to know is that when you apply for and book shifts through Locate a Locum, it’s not us that pays you. That’s up to your employer, or hiring pharmacy, whichever terminology you’re more comfortable with.

Another misconception is that Locate a Locum set the rates available on our platform. This isn’t the case. Hiring pharmacies advertise shifts and they set the rates. These are not Locate a Locum rates, they are the rates that said pharmacies are willing to pay. We don’t take a cut of this, nor are there any hidden charges involved for you guys, the locums.

When you’re getting paid by pharmacies, there are a variety of processes, depending on where you’ve worked.

Check out the simple table below to get the info you need on how to claim payment from these participating pharmacies. Although we don’t physically pay you, we will try to facilitate the payment process. If you’re not paid on time, let us know and we’ll contact the employer.

Pharmacy Name
Payment Process


You do not need to leave an invoice. Payments are completed automatically via BACS payment approximately 14 days after your shift.


You do not need to leave an invoice. Payments are completed automatically via BACS 14 days after your shift. You must have all relevant documentation with Well for payments to be processed within this time frame.


You do not need to leave an invoice. Payments are completed automatically once weekly on the next Friday following your shift.

Day Lewis

You to do not need to leave an invoice. Payment is completed automatically via BACS payment on the last working day of the month. Payments can also take 3-5 working days to process and show within your account.

Independent Pharmacy

Depends on the independent pharmacy. Please contact pharmacy prior to shift start for more information.

Any questions? Get in touch with us on 020 7859 4613 and we’ll help you in any way that we can!

Need more locum shifts? Search for jobs on our locum platform!

10th August 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locate A Locum, How Does It Work?

Locate A Locum, How Does It Work?

You’ve heard of Locate a locum, you’ve heard that we’re a website where you can book locum shifts and someone’s told you that we may or may not offer a permanent jobs recruitment service. Right now, you’re going to get a quick breakdown of exactly what Locate a Locum is and how we can help with every aspect of your pharmacist career.

Locum Booking Platform

You’re a pharmacist who has enough human contact during the day at work and the last thing you want to do is speak to a recruitment agency every week. We’ve got the solution just for you! After you register with Locate a Locum and have completed your identification check, you can start applying for shifts! Pharmacies advertise an average of 5000 locum shifts on our website every month, so you’ll never be shirt of work. You can search for shifts in relation to date, rate and location, then apply for shifts in just 3 clicks! You can download our new mobile app and apply for shifts on the go! You’ll receive info and notifications directly to you phone relating to available shifts in the area of your choosing. You’ll never have to speak to an agency again!

(Quick tip – apply for as many shifts as possible. Our booking platform acts as a secretary, ensuring that you’ll never be double booked)

Locum Consultations

We understand that not everyone is in love with technology, and a lot of you guys prefer the recruitment agency model. So, we’ve assembled a team of experienced locum coordinators who are here to help you find and apply for locum shifts. You let us know your availability, where you want to work and we’ll make it happen for you!

(Quick tip - sometimes, not every shift gets advertised on our website. It can work in your interest to keep regular contact so that when a shift comes in within your location, we’ll call you about it right away!)

Permanent Jobs

Locums don’t necessarily stay locums forever, so we’ve developed a permanent recruitment division to help you find the perfect, permanent pharmacist job! We’re recruiting for permanent positions all over the UK and Ireland, for a variety of roles. Send us your CV and we’ll get back to you! We create dozens of blog articles which contain info such as interview advice and tips to create a CV that we know hiring pharmacies are looking for!

(Quick tip - Check out our blog site and subscribe to our weekly content relating to your pharmacy career)

Careers Consultations

As with the locum side of our business, we do not advertise every permanent job on our careers website. Why? We work to form close relationships with those who ask for assistance in finding locum or permanent work. When we’re asked to work on a job, our first port of call is our contact lists. Use the information below to arrange for a call from Thomas, our permanent recruitment director, and he’ll be able to give you advice on how you can best reach your career goals. Thomas has experience of creating new jobs for outstanding candidates, so even if you can’t see a job that you like on our website, that doesn’t mean that he can’t make something happen for you!

(Quick tip - we’ve helped dozens of people to find jobs when relocation is a must. Get in touch if personal circumstances have dictated that you need to relocate)

Register with Locate a Locum: www.locatealocum.com/sign-up
Locum Consultation: Call 020 7859 4613 and ask to speak to Alison or Clare
Permanent Careers Consultation: Call 020 7859 4613 and ask to speak to Thomas
Permanent Jobs Website: https://careers.locatealocum.com/
Subscribe to our weekly blog: https://blog.locatealocum.com/pharmacy/

2nd August 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locate A Locum's Guide To Dementia Friend Training

Locate A Locum's Guide To Dementia Friend Training

In the grand old year of 2014, which seems so long ago, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society said that we should all become ‘Dementia Friends’ and this sentiment was backed by the Alzheimer’s Society. Today, their dreams are being realised through the existence of hundreds of thousands of Dementia Friends throughout the UK, and thousands of participating pharmacies and pharmacists.

CPD is vital to the progression of our careers and those who want to feel indispensable in the dispensary will continue to undertake new and various short courses. So, what exactly is a Dementia Friend?

The Dementia Friends programme has been put in place to help transform attitudes towards, and the understanding of, Dementia. Millions of people across the UK have been touched by Dementia and it could affect you one day. Pharmacists are entrusted to not only deliver practical and medicinal services, but to act as a source of moral support for those experiencing health-related decline.

One massive misconception about undertaking Dementia Friend training is that many people who we speak to feel that they must actively befriend those with Dementia. This isn’t the case. As a Pharmacist, you do not walk the streets looking for sick people to prescribe medication to. (Or maybe you do?) By completing Dementia Friend training, you are empowering yourself to better understand a patient, or their family, when they approach you and they’re suffering as a result of the illness.

When working through Locate a Locum, we will ask you to provide proof of your Dementia Friend training certificate. Not only does this protect the hiring pharmacy, but it protects the patients whom you will be interacting with. We want to ensure that you have the best possible chance of being confirmed for the shift that you’ve applied for, so we’ll help you get all your ducks in a row!

Where do you carry out your Dementia Friend training? Check out the links below!

Where do you apply for your next locum shifts? Check out our Find a Job page, or give us a call on 020 7859 4613 and we’ll help with your applications.

2nd August 2017 by Locate A Locum

Why Choose ECG Training?

Why chose ECG vaccine training? We love what we do and hope that it is reflected in your experience with ECG!

Our CEO and founder of ECG, Jane Lambert, is still a qualified nurse. She thrives on being able to provide healthcare professionals with the most accessible, flexible, professional and yet enjoyable training to enhance their patient care.

Established in 2002, we provide thousands of nurses, doctors, pharmacists, allied health professionals and their teams with mandatory and clinical training to support their roles. In fact, last year we trained 27,500 people!

Ten years of vaccine training for pharmacists has given us so much experience in what works and what pharmacists need to feel more confident and competent in their skills. We have seen a huge shift in their confidence with vaccinations over the years and praise the difference they are making to their patients.

This year we were delighted to have gained our Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Accredited Training Provider status and we are enjoying a collaborative working relationship with them.

Having already mentioned accessibility and flexibility, this is important to us as we acknowledge the demands our clients are under. We now offer weekday, weekend and evening training sessions.

We also can provide a group session at your venue, you can attend one of our nationwide open courses, complete our online refresher course or join us for your training at The Pharmacy Show. We hope this gives you plenty of options of how to access your CPD certified training.

All of our training can cover the practical skills you require for delivering a flu and a travel vaccination service at your pharmacy.

This year we have further developed our service by offering private flu PGDs to anyone who has attended or completed our training. We recognise that pharmacists were asking for a ‘one stop shop’ approach to setting up their service and this certainly seems to have helped their planning this year.

In these exciting times we have also partnered with ‘VIP (Valneva in Partnership) travel health service support programme’, this will enable our clients to be signposted to their online platform to fully support setting up and offering a travel health service.

Our 80 clinical trainers (experienced nurses and paramedics) are located nationwide and provide interactive and enjoyable training sessions and fully support all learning styles.

Our head office is based in Milton Keynes where we have a team of 13 who support all our training programmes, part of this includes a clinical team on-site who can answer your clinical questions as they arise before or after training with us.

After joining one of our training events you will be able to access the delegate resource page on our website where you will be able to download a comprehensive handout as well as view refresher videos on all skills taught during the training. We appreciate that there may be some time delay between your training and starting your vaccination clinics so we hope this helps to maintain your confidence as you can access these videos at any time.

Our blogs, twitter and LinkedIn will also be full of useful information to help you with your practical skills and your services.

Most pharmacists use our services for vaccination training but we also provide other subjects such as resuscitation, first aid, moving & handling, chaperoning and phlebotomy (to name a few).

We are just about to launch our new products page on our website for those healthcare professionals who are looking to purchase a defibrillator or pocket masks etc.

Last year we trained 8000 pharmacists, here is what some of our larger clients said:

ECG are a fantastic organisation to work with and are always accommodating to our business needs.

The management team attend to our requests without hesitation and are able to respond to any queries we may have within our agreed timescales. The quality of the training that is delivered by the ECG trainers is excellent! They are clear, accurate and very approachable, ensuring that the highest standards of training are delivered.

Quotes from our pharmacists who receive training:

“Excellent manner and very understandable.”
“Put serious information across in a very pleasant and light-hearted manner.”
“Knowledgeable instructor with plenty of real life examples helping to put things into context.”
“Excellent, engaging session. Good refresher.”
“Very good/useful and up to date knowledge provided.”
Meera Joshi: Professional Development Designer
Professional Development Team, Boots UK

"We have worked with ECG for a number of years now, they have provided us with services in delivering training to a wide number of our store colleagues in a range of subjects, including First Aid, giving vaccinations and using defibrillators.

ECG’s trainers have always provided an exceptionally high quality of training, bringing fascinating real-life experience to the classroom and really engaging with our delegates, who in turn always give great feedback on the sessions.

ECG have always proved to be a fantastic company to work with, no problem is ever too big, and no timescale too tight. I always have confidence that the product discussed with Jane and the team will be exactly what is delivered to our delegates."
Learning & Development Partner

We are pleased to be partnering with Locate a Locum in being able to provide our training to pharmacists and ensure our clients are aware of these services, as many are already using them.

For further details please check our website www.ecgtraining.co.uk or contact us on enquiries@ecgtraining.co.uk or 0845 423 8993

We look forward to hearing from you!

2nd August 2017 by Locate A Locum

6 Tips To Find More Locum Work With Locate A Locum

6 Tips To Find More Locum Pharmacist Work With Locate A Locum

You’ve filled out the registration form on the Locate a Locum website, you’ve applied for your first shift, confirmed your identity and you haven’t been accepted. This is the end of the world as we know it! Only, it’s not!

We’re good at one thing, and that’s making sure that pharmacists get regular locum work! So, how can you find more locum work using the Locate a Locum website or mobile app?

1, Apply for more shifts

Let’s get real. You’re not going to get accepted for every shift that you apply for. There’s other people applying on our website. One thing that we’ve found from speaking to our locums is that some of you guys have been worried about getting double booked if you apply for more than one shift on your available dates. This is not the case. This will NEVER happen. Our booking platform acts like a secretary and we’ll ensure that you never get double booked. If you’re not applying for shifts, someone else will be. You have to be in it to win it! So, apply, apply, apply! You will be contacted if you’ve been successful with your applications.

(Quick Stat – The average success rate for winning locum shifts is 23%. Meaning that you should be applying for at least 5 shifts at a time to maximise your chances of being hired by the pharmacy. We have shifts available throughout August & September, get applying!)

2, Send your CV so we can place you more effectively

Let us know your experience, where you’ve worked and what you’ve achieved. Let us know how enthusiastic you are when it comes to your career. We can work on your behalf to create opportunities in pharmacies on your behalf. For free! We can help you to find work that is suited to your level of experience.

3, Speak to an expert locum coordinator & let us know your availability

Using an online booking platform isn’t for everyone. We’ve put together a team of expert recruiters, amassing 30+ years of healthcare recruitment, to help you with your locum career. Get in touch and tell us your availability, let us know where you want to work, when you want to work and our guys will help you with shift applications. Give us a call on 020 7859 4613

4, Get accredited

Hiring managers love a bit of CPD. The more enthusiastic you seem on your Locate a Locum profile, the more likely you are to get hired. We advise all locums to complete their Dementia Friend Training. Many pharmacies see ongoing CPD as a prerequisite for any hire that they make, be it for permanent jobs or locum shifts. The most successful pharmacists who regularly win shifts have their MUR accreditation along with Level 2 safeguarding.

5, Get yourself a smart card!

Although this isn’t necessarily mandatory for locums, some of our pharmacy employers do require it. To be brief, they allow you to access certain pieces of information on pharmacy IT systems that could be related to patients or pharmacy practices in a timely manner. Check out our recent post about getting a smart card!

6, Be flexible!

We can’t have it all, and don’t we just know it! You’ll not always get the rate that you want, or be able to work in your favourite pharmacy, but being flexible with your working pattern allows you to learn new skills. The more shifts you work through Locate a Locum, the more appealing your applications become to our hiring managers.

If by chance you have not registered with us yet, you’re missing out on 5000 locum shifts every month. I’ll make this really easy for you, you can register right here!

If you have registered, get applying for more shifts on our locum booking platform, or give us a call on 020 7859 4613, we’re ready to help!

25th July 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locate A Locum BNF App Review! (We love it)

Locate A Locum BNF App Review

Has everyone had the opportunity to check out the new app from the BNF? I know that there are other people like me out there who don’t necessarily like change, but there’ll be a handover period of sorts in the respect that the new app will mimic some features and content of the previous version.

What we’ve liked in the office, is that the app has been designed for both IOS & Android, meaning that it not only looks great, but It feels like it’s been built specifically for your phone!

This new app is available offline. What does that mean? Well, it means that you can access all the app’s information when you don’t have an internet connection. However, this also means that you can’t use the old, ‘I didn’t have any internet so couldn’t check that,’ excuse anymore…

Content will be updated on a monthly basis, so I would still use other resources if you’re in any doubt as to any immediate changes to practices, procedures or legislation.

Medicine searching is easy with functionality that resembles Autocorrect on an iPhone. Don’t pretend that you can spell all the medicine names, we all need a bit of help with that!

There’s also a really cool feature that allows you to instantly ascertain the interactions of selected medicines. This is a huge time saver and a wonderful way to give quick and factual information to patients. We all agreed that the Treatment Summaries page was of great significance, empowering pharmacists to make more efficient decisions and give greater advice to patients.

All in all, the app is fantastic, and nothing less than the high standards that I have come to appreciate from the BNF. Remember, it’s free to download and I would advise everyone to get to the App Store asap!

Best way to use the app? When you're working locum shifts through Locate a Locum! Register here and apply for shifts on our Locum Platform!

20th July 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locate a Locum, Locum Pharmacist League!

Locate a Locum, Locum Pharmacist League

At Locate a Locum- We care about locums. Over 3000 locums have used our service since we launched and to date we have booked over 100,000 hours’ worth of shifts.

Locums are the heart of our business and this month we are proud to launch the monthly locum league. Giving back to the locum profession.

What is it?

The Locum League is a monthly prize give-away to the top performing locums who work the most shifts through our booking platform.

How do I win?

Work as many shifts as possible via our website or mobile app.

The locum who has worked the most shifts in each month will be given a £50 voucher for online stores including Amazon, Top Shop, MotherCare and Next!

How do I enter?

Everyone who books shifts through our platform will automatically be entered into the Locum Pharmacist League. If you want to opt out, you can. But, why would you?

How do I reclaim my prize?

We’ll notify you of your victory by telephone call, through an email or text message. To reclaim your prize, you must supply us with a photo that’ll be published on our social media accounts and we ask that you Share the related post from Locate a Locum to all of your friends.

When does the Locum League start?

The Locum Pharmacist League starts on the 1st August and the first winner will be contacted early September. That’ll be the format every month until you’re all otherwise informed.

So, get onto our locum platform and start booking more shifts! Alternatively, give one of our expert coordinators a call on 020 7859 4613 and they’ll help with your applications! And remember, check out our Careers site if you’re after a new permanent job!

(Terms & Conditions Apply)

6th July 2017 by Locate A Locum

Flu Jab Training For Locum Pharmacists

Flu Jab Training For Locum Pharmacists

Flu jab training for locum pharmacists is an extremely important part of the learning and development process.

In September 2015 eligible community pharmacies were nationally commissioned for the first time to deliver the annual NHS flu vaccination service. In the first year community pharmacists delivered in excess of 595,000 flu vaccinations; and as a result of the success of the service it was recommissioned in 2016/2017, where community pharmacy delivered in excess of 950,000 vaccinations (source: http://psnc.org.uk/services-commissioning/advanced-services/flu-vaccination-service/flu-vaccination-statistics/)

It is likely that the NHS flu vaccination will be commissioned on an ongoing basis and thus all pharmacists who wish to offer this service will need to access appropriate training as defined in the NHS PGD.

It is important for all pharmacists, including locum pharmacists to be flu vaccine trained; the NHS flu service specification for community pharmacy states that pharmacies that offer the flu vaccination service must offer the service to patients during ALL of their opening hours! What this means is that if a pharmacy is not able to employ a locum pharmacist that can administer the flu vaccine, then it would be in breach of its NHS contract! Therefore, all pharmacy contractors that offer the NHS flu vaccination service must only employ locums that are trained to deliver the service (if the locum is the only pharmacist available at the branch!)

So what does the flu vaccination training involve?

It is an NHS requirement that all pharmacists that vaccinate under the NHS flu vaccination service receive face-to-face training at least every two years. This is part of the requirement for completing the declaration of competence, which must be completed prior to delivering the NHS service. Whilst this is the minimum requirement, the health protection agency in its recommendations for training suggests annual refresher training is advisable for all vaccinators.

Rx Advisor’s dedicated flu vaccination training team are pleased to bring you a comprehensive flu jab training course (more details available from: http://www.FluJabTraining.co.uk) which covers all of the NHS requirements and includes detailed training on all injection techniques, including intra-muscular injections, subcutaneous injections, intra-dermal injections and intra-nasal injections. In addition to this the training also covers basic life support and CPR and management of emergencies with adrenaline. A detailed overview of the NHS service specification and PGD is also covered so that you will be well equipped to hit the ground running after you complete the training.

After delivering the flu jab training to thousands of pharmacists over the years Rx Advisor has responded to feedback and has made things as easy as possible for pharmacists by incorporating online training materials to support the face-to-face training workshop. This allows the workshop session to be only 2-hours long.

To add more convenience the 2-hour face to face workshop will be provided in:

Manchester on 16/7/2017
Leicester on 6/8/2017 and 
London on 20/8/2017

To book your place please visit: http://www.FluJabTraining.co.uk

Rx Advisor has been delivering this training since 2015, and the feedback from pharmacists has been excellent. The training is delivered by an experienced pharmacist who actually delivers the NHS flu jab service as well as other private vaccination services, so he can relay his experience during the workshop and provide hints and tips on how best to provide the service.

"The Flu training was very informative and the practical sessions were the most beneficial. In particular, the trainer was brilliant!" Kassim Kurji (Pharmacist Peterborough)

“I found the course material succinct. For most Pharmacists who've offered the service for >3 years, this is a perfect refresher. I like the link to the competency Declaration”. Naresh Chauhan (Pharmacist Nottingham)

4th July 2017 by Locate A Locum

Advertise Pharmacy Products With Locate A Locum

Advertise Pharmacy Products With Locate A Locum

Do You Want To Advertise Pharmacy Products To The UK & Ireland Pharmacy Sector?

Locate a Locum is an online platform connecting over 3000 pharmacists directly with employers.
Our website receives over 1200 visits from pharmacists every day, presenting a unique opportunity for advertisers who need to engage with the difficult to reach pharmacy sector.

What Locate a Locum can offer;
Web Banner on our website
Branded email campaign sent to all users (3000+)
Branded email sent to 500 pharmacy owners
Sponsored Blog, including sales materials
Social media advertising campaign, reaching over 12,000 people across the UK & Ireland
Indefinite link(s) to your website and sales pages from our platform

Why Choose Locate a Locum:
Access to over 3000 locum pharmacists
Access to over 500 pharmacy owners
Over 400 weekly blog views and 3,000 weekly website visitors

Don’t Take Our Word For it!
“It has been great partnering Locate a Locum. One of the advertising campaigns gave Crunch access to thousands of self employed, locum pharmacists, all of whom were interested in our accountancy services. It was very simple to measure the new business that Locate a Locum sent our way and I'm sure we'll do it again." Stacy Martin, Crunch Accounting

The cost:
We are all individuals - so are our businesses. Just give as a call on 020 7859 4613 or send a mail to info@locatealocum.com and we will prepare a personalised offer that suits your needs.

20th June 2017 by Locate A Locum

I'm A Newly Qualified Pharmacist, What Now?

'I'm a newly qualified pharmacist, what now?'

Congratulations, you're now a pharmacist! All the years of hard work, persistence and Red Bull have finally paid off! First thing's first, do not freak out!

We've been inundated with questions all week from newly qualified pharmacists just like you who are a bit confused as to what happens next. Now, you have to be an adult, and it's quite daunting. Daunting that is, unless you have a team of specialists who are going to work with you every step of the way! So, here's some answers to all those questions!

'How do I become a locum?'

Now that you're a newly qualified pharmacist, you need to register with Locate a Locum immediately! Check out our website where you can apply for locum shifts across the UK in a matter of seconds. You'll never have to go to a recruitment agent and you'll have full control of your work schedule. We add over 1200 shifts every week, so you'll never be short of work!

'What do I need to register?'

You'll need to set aside a grand total of 30 seconds to complete our registration form. After that, before you work a shift, you'll need to provide us with documentation relating to your insurance. You'll need an Access NI check and like any good club that you want to get into, you'll need to show us your ID.

'Is there a cost?'

Absolutely not, and furthermore, we'll never take a penny from you for finding work! We're not a recruitment agency.

'Wait, I haven't gotten my GPHC number yet!'

Have no fear, Locate a Locum is here! We've spoken to pharmacies across the UK and many hiring managers will happily take you on for shifts. So, apply for shifts anyway, you have to be in it to win it!

'And what about insurance and a DBS check?'

We can sort your DBS for just £65, which is £11 less than our nearest competitor! And check out this blog about finding the insurance that you need! If you're in any doubt at all as to how you action any of these things, please give us a call, we can help!

'I heard that you need a smart card to act as a locum?'

That is the preferred method for working in various locations with some of the large multiples. We've written a blog on smart cards too!

'One more thing, what about paying tax? Is it true that I can't get credit if I'm a locum?'

Funnily enough, we also have a blog that we create with our good friends from Crunch Accounting. Crunch in providing financial services for the self employed, are what David Beckham was to football. They can help both experienced and a newly qualified pharmacist.

'I'd actually prefer a permanent job first, can Locate a Locum help?'

Yep, we have a permanent recruitment division where we offer free careers consultations, free CV reviews and we'll work on your behalf to create roles throughout the UK where one may not currently exist. We've gotten pretty good at it. Check out our Careers website to view our existing permanent positions or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com

When can I get started?
Register Now!

16th June 2017 by Locate A Locum

4 Reasons Why A Locum Pharmacist Would Move To A Permanent Job

4 Reasons Why A Locum Pharmacist Would Move To A Permanent Job

Having conducted a locum survey which gathered over 205 responses, we learned a lot about the motivating factors which encourage people to undertake a locum career, and why they would potentially move into a permanent position.

We found that locums prefer their current role because it offers them flexibility in relation to their working calendar. Locums can work across the UK, they can often avail of benefits such as free hotel accommodation and, depending on location, the hourly rates can equate to significantly more than those found in a permanent position. One could work in Bournemouth for one month, and end up in Aberdeen several months later having stayed and worked in various UK cities! What an experience!

So, why might you stop being a locum pharmacist, and enter a permanent role?

Change in Circumstance
What if you fall in love, have a child or if you finally get a season ticket for your hometown football club? Maybe it’s time to settle in one location and give up the travelling life that you’ve had for the past few years. Stop living out of a suitcase and get yourself somewhere to call home.

Wanting A Regular Income
Being a locum is great in relation to floating rates, over-time and other benefits, but sometimes it can be difficult to avail of credit when you don’t have a guaranteed income. If you want to buy a car or secure a mortgage, some lenders may require a permanent and stable income. If you’re finding credit hard to come by, but don’t want to undertake a permanent position, get in touch with our friends at Crunch for expert accounting advice

Career Progression
Many of our clients will only hire pharmacists into senior positions if they have a track record of achievement within one organisation over a prolonged period of time. They want to know that the person they’re investing in will commit to the role long term. Having some extended experience in a role can help you jump up the career ladder quicker than those who have always locumed. Maybe you want to specialise in one discipline or treat a specific condition. The varied learning experience of being a locum may mean it’s tough to gain the niche experience that you want.

To Build Relationships
It’s great being able to jump around different teams and meet new people all the time. It’s great being able to move around the country and visit different places. But do you really get to know anyone? Living on the road and being surrounded by new people all the time can actually become quite a lonely experience. Some locums who we’ve placed in permanent positions have claimed that the reason for them settling down was to meet a partner, become part of a community and to join a social club. That’s how you can make real friends and feel part of something.

Get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, if you’re interested in a permanent position. We offer free CV reviews, free careers consultations and we can work on your behalf to create roles in pharmacies who may need your services but don’t quite know it yet.

Get in touch with Thomas on 07746625940 or thomas@locatealocum.com

Until then, access over 1200 locum shifts on our booking platform every week!

7th June 2017 by Locate A Locum

Pharmacists, Dealing With Angry Patients

Pharmacists, Dealing With Angry Patients

We’ve all been there, angry patients can sometimes become aggressive and you’re using every piece of your strength not to shout back. Sometimes as a locum, you’re sorting out a relationship that had been strained before you arrived at the pharmacy, but now you’re the one in the firing line. Regardless of how the situation has come about, you’re now in a confrontation, and you’re the professional in the situation. What do you do? You think, ‘LATE.’

L – Listen

This sounds obvious, but the best way to get to the root cause of any problem is to listen to the other party. How has this situation come about? Were there any misunderstandings as to what was supposed to happen regarding timelines, medicines involved or communications that were expected? Patients can be extremely worried about their situation and more often than not, they aren’t mad at you. They’re mad at their situation. You can only help their situation if you listen to their problem.

A – Acknowledge

Empathy is key to calming a worrying or aggressive situation. As I’ve mentioned above, patients may be in a state of panic regarding their health. They aren't necessarily mad at you. Put yourself in their shoes. What if you were ill and had run out of medicine because you were too ill to collect a repeat prescription. What if this was your mother or son? Whether the patient is wrong at this point is irrelevant. Remember, you’re the professional, so put yourself in their shoes.

T – Take Action

It’s up to you to solve the problem. Address the prescription requirements. Carry out further counselling if required. Update patient files where necessary. Get your patient a glass of water or a cup of tea if needs be. I always refer to patients as that, patients. They aren’t customers. The minute we star to refer to patients in our pharmacies as paying customers, that’s the day that we stop going above and beyond.

E – Explain

You’ve Listened, you’ve Acknowledged the situation and you’ve Taken action. Now you need to debrief your patient. Explain to them why you feel that the unfortunate incident came about. Explain to them how they can prevent this scenario happening again. And explain to them how you will help to ensure that this scenario will never happen again. Approach the future as a team, both members understanding the expectations that they have of each other.

Empathy is key when dealing with angry patients. It’s easier to deal with an angry patient if you imagine them being your mother, son, cousin or partner. How would you like them to be helped?

The only way that you can encounter angry patients is if you’re in regular work! You can book regular locum shifts in your area on our locum platform, or you can get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, and arrange a careers consultation to find your next permanent job.

5th June 2017 by Locate A Locum

The Perfect Pharmacist Candidate - Locate A Locum

Does The Perfect Pharmacist Candidate Exist?

As an employer, you want knowledgeable members of staff to help drive your business forward. You want a vast amount of experience to ensure that your pharmacy remains profitable and to represent you in every perceivable setting. You want someone to be chatty, but not so chatty as to become a distraction. Someone who’s enthusiastic, but won’t become a threat to other senior members of staff.

You may want someone who’s flexible with their approach to work, while also being process driven and eager to work within defined parameters. You may not have the budget to attract all of the traits that you want, meaning that you’ll need to flexible with regards to those who you hire into your business.

So, let’s have a look at the three main traits that we experience from our applicants on a daily basis. The Venn Diagram below gives you an indication of the rarity of the perfect pharmacist candidate.

Experience (Processes & Accreditations)

There are many pharmacists out there who prides themselves on CPD. They were generally high achievers in school and are determined to ensure that the number of certificates in their study keeps increasing. Numbers, processes, data and conformity give this person a sense of achievement. In the pharmacy sector, that sounds perfect.

However, this type of person may leave your organisation in pursuit of their personal goals. We often discover that they have had lots of employers on their CV and they usually cite ‘personal ambition’ as the reason for moving around. Their process driven outlook may mean that they are inflexible with regards to changes in working patterns and may oppose change within an organisation.

Personal aspiration is great, as is someone who is process driven, but those qualities do not define that person and hiring managers often require more flexibility and a team-based mentality when employing members of staff.


Flexible pharmacists will generally complete CPD either by gaining practical experience as they develop within the work setting but they may not be eager to undertake further studies. What a flexible pharmacist can offer is the ability to fit into a variety of teams and the ability to adapt to surroundings. Flexible pharmacists are perfect locums, they embrace variety and are willing to operate within new and innovative processes.

I know what you may be thinking, ‘these guys are a bit flaky and we need someone who’s process driven.’ We’ve heard that from clients before. If you hire the flexible pharmacist, they could bring innovation to your site and they could inspire others around them. However, if you’re a hiring manager who is more comfortable with traditional thinking, you’ll want someone more like yourself. You want the experienced pharmacist who is process driven.


There are some things that we can’t measure. We know how many prescriptions go out, we know our turnover and we know how many patients we see. But how does this happen? Why do people come to your pharmacy instead of your competitor’s? A lot could be down to your staff and how they interact with your patients. You can’t train someone to have a ‘bedside’ manner and you can’t train enthusiasm.

However, just because someone has a great demeanour with patients, doesn’t mean that they’re giving the correct information. Experience is vital in our industry. Mind you, you can train people to follow processes and you can teach people new skills. You can’t teach a personality.

Working With Locate A Locum

The Venn Diagram above offers a great representation of the ratio of candidates that we speak to, in relation to their most prominent traits. We speak to lots of people who fit uniquely into each trait. Fewer who encompass two traits, and even fewer who display all three. Hence the star in the centre.

That’s our goal. We want to introduce you to candidates who demonstrate all three traits, the perfect pharmacist.

Our ability to find you the perfect pharmacist relies on you being honest with us with regards to what you need and being realistic about budgets. As with much in life, you’ll attract the quality that you’re willing to pay for.

If you want to speak to our expert pharmacist recruiter, Thomas, please get in touch on 07746625940 or send an email to thomas@locatealocum.com We’ll get back to asap and get the ball rolling to find you the perfect pharmacist candidate!

We’ll find you a star!

2nd June 2017 by Locate A Locum

3 Pre-Reg Pharmacist Exam Tips Marvin Munzu & Locate A Locum

3 Pre-Reg Pharmacist Exam Tips Marvin Munzu & Locate A Locum

'It seems like it was Christmas a few weeks ago, and now we’re into examination season! Time flies when you’re having fun! The good news is that you’re within touching distance of achieving your goal of becoming a pharmacist. All those years of hard work will finally have come to fruition. I’m going to make this piece very short because that time is valuable is this point!

So, here’s what I think are the three key decisions that you must take into consideration in your final month. These factors will determine whether or not you succeed. No pressure…

1, What Are You Going To Focus On?
If you have attended any of my sessions, I tend to speak about the importance of focus. What you are focusing on in relation to your exam? Are you focusing on what you do well, when maybe you should be focusing on the areas that you struggle with? You should focus on your strengths because that’s where you’ll get your confidence from, but you need to acknowledge that you do have weaknesses. Addressing your weaknesses will also give you great confidence as you see improvements!

2, Deciding How To Handle Your Experiences.
It’s up to you how you react to success and failures. How are your mock exams and practice questions progressing? Are you becoming stressed because you’re getting questions wrong? Or are you going to view these small discretions as temporary blips and take confidence from the improvements that you’re making? Your mindset is your choice. Failure doesn’t have to be a failure. Try to view it is a chance to grow! See failure as a learning experience!

3, It’s Your Decision What Happens Next
It’s up to you what result you get; the power is in your hands! If you aren’t confident of passing, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t. You still have time to change your habits. Go and talk to a friend from your class and help each other. Sharing knowledge is power when it comes to working in pharmacy. You don’t do this alone. Learn from your friends and share your doubts. Understanding that your peers aren’t perfect can help you deal with the unnecessary pressure that you place on yourself. So, don’t give up!

Thanks for reading. I hope this is helpful. The reason I’m sending you these messages this month is because at this stage, the most important aspect of your development is your ‘mental strength’.

Approach your exams with positivity. Learn from mistakes and see mistakes as room for development. A positive mindset can help to reduce stress and can bring enjoyment to your professional development. A happy mind can recall information with greater ease than a foggy mind.

Stay positive!

Good luck and I’ll speak to you soon


Pre Reg guys, Locate a Locum can guarantee you work experience through our locum platform. We have shifts throughout the UK. We also have a careers platform where we recruit for permanent positions!

31st May 2017 by Locate A Locum

Working With A Pharmacist Recruitment Consultant

Working With A Pharmacist Recruitment Consultant

We're back this week to give you the advice you need when dealing with a recruitment consultant. What are the main factors to consider and how can you ensure that you attract and retain the best talent? Read on to find out!

Be Honest About Salary, Benefits & Working Conditions

Salary, benefits and work conditions should be clear from the start. This gives the recruiter the best chance to focus on the people who will be attracted to the available role, based on the specifications you have outlined. If these factors are not clear from the beginning of your process, you may be unable to effectively sell the role not only to candidates, but to recruiters who could've worked on your behalf. Being honest about what a role entails will help to talk to candidates with credibility regarding what is on offer. The more a recruiter knows, the better.

What's Your Company's Culture

Company culture should be highlighted alongside the general scope of the role. This is essential for the recruiter to sell the role to candidates with a focus on fit within a business. A potential candidate may have outstanding qualifications and fantastic working history, but if they aren't going to fit into your team, then they may not last long in your organisation and you'll have to begin the process again. Costing you more time and money.

Agree On A Timeline & Process With The Recruitment Consultant

Creating a solid plan, including timeline, is the best start to the process for any hire. Adhering to a timeline helps to manage expectations of the hiring company, recruiter and potential candidates. Too often, organisations are flippant with regards to closing dates for roles, making it harder for them to review their process and spend in the long term.

Idea Process

1, Establishing a realistic timeline to hire.

(This could be based on the current member of staff's notice period, or it could be based on a new business requirement)

2, Qualify the role.

(What do you really need? What would be perfect and where is there wiggle room? Why did the previous member of staff leave?)

3, Create an attractive job advertisement / description.

(Why would someone want this job?)

4, Agree upon a candidate sourcing deadline.

(This is important so that recruitment consultants can assign time and a budget towards filling your role. It also helps to manage expectations)

5, Set interview schedule.

(Be committed to the dates, but be flexible with the format. The best person for this job may only be available for a Skype Interview on these dates. Don't let traditionalism drive away the perfect candidate.)

6, Agree on the approach to making an offer and timeline for decision.

(Both internally, with your recruitment consultant and with the candidate)

7, Set on-boarding schedule.

(Set a start date, ensure that uniforms, if necessary, are ordered and sized. Make sure that you have laptops, computers, email addresses, company accounts and security clearances arranged.)

8, Be prepared for a counter offer.

(This is quite common. However, did you know that 68% of people who accept a counter offer from the company that they currently work for, leave said company within 6 months? Why? Because it wasn't just the monetary aspect of the job that they were unhappy with.)

Stay In Contact With The Recruitment Consultant

We insist on a weekly scheduled call with hiring managers when we're working on a role for them. We want you to know what we're doing at all times and to offer you feedback from candidates that we've spoken to. We may suggest that you increase salary or reduce working hours to attract the best candidates.

How To Get The Ball Rolling?

If you want a recruitment consultant who only hires pharmacists, to work on your behalf, get in touch with Thomas at Locate a Locum. We have a candidate base of 2300 registered and verified pharmacists, all of whom are actively looking for work. Email Thomas on thomas@locatealocum.com or give him a call on 077 466 25940

26th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

The Pre-Reg Manual - Naeema R Ahmed With Locate A Locum

Who we are

The Pre Reg Manual (TPRM) was initially founded in 2014 by creating an active social media presence. The aim was to engage with pre-registration pharmacists, aiding them with daily informative and digestible information across a variety of topics, such as Symptoms in Pharmacy, Calculations and Law and Ethics. Through feedback from pre-registration students have we recognised the need for a strong support network and up to date, accessible resources. In response to the feedback, TPRM has evolved with practicing pharmacists and pharmacy academics from various backgrounds - each passionate about delivering unique learning materials in an innovative, effective way.

At TPRM, we understand just how stressful the training year can be, which is why we have worked hard to develop a simplistic course structure, which covers fundamental aspects of the syllabus in adequate depth and difficulty. Having understood that the training year often comes with many time constraints, we feel that it is important to offer students the flexibility to take control of their learning and have access to resources outside of the workplace.

What we do

Our dedicated team of pharmacists have developed a comprehensive online training programme, which includes coverage of fundamental aspects of the updated GPhC registration assessment framework. This includes detailed notes on important clinical topics covered in the BNF, Symptoms in Pharmacy, Law & Ethics and Calculations Series, as well as coverage of other examinable areas. These are accompanied with up to date examination style worksheets and an expansive video series based on key areas of the syllabus to aid visual learners.

As well as our online notes, videos and worksheets, our team are proud to present the very first online mock registration assessment for all Pre-registration trainees. Our mock exam comes with three attempts and has been developed in line with the latest updates to the exam framework and in the new style of the exam, allowing all trainees to have a realistic experience of the real exam with the flexibility of choosing when to sit it.

How we can support you

It is our job to ensure that pre-registration trainees are well prepared for the diverse and challenging content of the registration assessment. By signing up to one of our bespoke online training packages, we can provide the guidance and structure that you need throughout your training year, to ensure your learning objectives are met.

For all “Ultimate” package members, our dedicated team of content developers can offer their expertise advice and support by answering any questions which you may have. Our Online Mock Registration Assessment provides you with the opportunity to get a feel for the real exam, under timed conditions so that you can identify any gaps in your knowledge and gain practice of time management.

TPRM also offer an annual intensive one day workshop: “Your absolute guide to the Pre Reg Exam” in partnership with Green Light Campus. This provides students with the opportunity to cover important areas of the assessment framework according to their weighting, case based scenarios and extract based questions, advice and tips for the registration assessment as well as the opportunity to speak with highly experienced and skilled lecturers to address any individual questions or concerns. For further information about our online course packages, mock assessment or workshops, send an email to info@tprm.co.uk and a member of our team will be happy to help!

Our partners

We are pleased to announce the launch of our annual intensive one day workshop “Your absolute guide to the Pre Reg Exam” in partnership with Green Light Campus. Green Light Campus is the training arm of Green Light Healthcare, a nationally recognised, award winning multi-disciplinary education and training provider across the UK. The training team at Green Light Campus forms an integral part of the University College London School of Pharmacy undergraduate programme, and are frequently commissioned by Health Education England to provide training for Pre-Registration pharmacists.

TPRM also work closely with Locate a Locum to ensure students have a smooth and easy transition into working life as a qualified locum pharmacist. Newly qualified pharmacists can readily access work opportunities across the UK and Ireland, along with support and advice from the dedicated team at Locate a Locum.

Together, we provide a unique learning experience for all pre-registration trainees to ensure that they are well prepared for the all-important registration assessment and beyond. For further information or queries, please email info@tprm.co.uk, and a member of our team will be in touch.

We wish you all the best for your upcoming exam!

The Pre Reg Manual Team

22nd May 2017 by Locate A Locum

Pharmacy Recruitment, Candidate Attraction - Locate A Locum

Pharmacy Recruitment, Candidate Attraction Strategies

We’re back this week with our Pharmacy Employer blog, and we’re talking about candidate attraction. We’ve outlined the top candidate attraction strategies that we use in-house to hire the best staff for Locate a Locum, but also for our clients.

Write an Effective & Appealing Advertisement

We talk to candidates every day, they care about money and they care about location. These two factors should be the first thing that people see when presented with your job description. After being impressed with the location and the money involved, they are much more likely to engage with the rest of the content that you have provided. We would also recommend you include any benefits near the top of your job post.

Avoid being too generic with your job description, try and give pharmacists an insight into what the company’s culture is like. Why would they want to work there? People love holidays and time off, so let them know what’s on offer.

Advertisement Placement

Market research is quite important when finding out where you need to post your job listings. When hiring pharmacists, you shouldn’t post jobs on websites that are aimed at engineers. We recently carried out a locum survey and discovered that pharmacists looked for jobs on Indeed, Facebook and LinkedIn. Because of this, we have greatly reduced our Twitter marketing spend. We assumed that pharmacists would look for work on Twitter, but upon speaking to our market, we found that not to be the case.

Do you have any marketing expertise in your pharmacy? Ever tried Google Ads? Advertising on Google is a great, but complicated way, of reaching your target market. The same applies with Facebook. It’s easy to write a status update, but do you really know how Facebook advertising works? I’d suggest that you speak to an expert, such as our in-house marketing team. We can help you advertise your jobs even if you don’t want us to work proactively on your roles.

Indeed have fantastic customer service teams who would be happy to help you advertise your jobs with them. It will be up to you to monitor and analyse the success of Indeed advertisements. You should mix both online and offline marketing activities. Personally, most of our ads are online as it’s easier to analyse their effectiveness and the return on any investment.

Employee & Candidate Referrals

Do you run a referral scheme? Pharmacists know pharmacists, and pharmacists talk to pharmacists about job openings. Use this to your advantage. Entice your staff to source you some candidates and pay them to do so. Open this offer to the general public and pay them if they successfully refer someone for one of your jobs.

Leave it to the Experts

We make no apology for saying that we’re excellent at what we do. We know the pharmacy market, we have an internal marketing team and we only hire pharmacists. We’re specialist pharmacist recruiters. We have a pool of 2300 candidates, all of whom are seeking opportunities. We have registered pharmacists located all over the UK, and we look after compliance so you don’t have to.

Let Locate a locum source your next member of staff. Get in touch with Recruitment Manager, Thomas Mulholland(thomas@locatealocum.com) for a free consultation with one of the UK’s best pharmacy recruitment experts. If you want to register with Locate a locum and get some locum cover while you search for your next permanent hire, register on our locum platform!

19th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

Locum Pharmacist, Professional Indemnity Insurance

Locum Pharmacist, Professional Indemnity Insurance

This week, we’re taking a look at locum pharmacists and professional indemnity insurance. This may be of particular interest to all you Pre-Reg pharmacists out there who are completing your exams in June! So, what is professional indemnity insurance, why do you need it and where can you get it?

What is 'Indemnity Insurance?'

Your pharmacist indemnity insurance is a policy that has been designed to protect pharmacists and pharmacy owners when they are perceived to be at fault in relation to specific events, such as a dispensing error. Indemnity insurance protects both pharmacies and pharmacists against claims regarding their conduct. Indemnity insurance is also referred to professional liability insurance.

Why Would A Pharmacist Need Professional Indemnity Insurance?

Just as it is a legal requirement to have insurance if you want to drive a car, It is a requirement of your professional registration to have indemnity insurance which covers all aspects of your professional role.

Pharmacists need professional indemnity insurance to protect them from civil claims regarding negligence or malpractice suits. Locum pharmacists require indemnity insurance as they work in multiple locations. Specific pharmacies carry their own insurance packages, but individual locums must also protect themselves to ensure they are supported when a claim is made or alleged against them.

Your insurance provider may also get involved with contract disputes, such as occasions when you are not paid properly or an employer has not fulfilled their part of an employment agreement that the two parties have entered into. For pharmacies, insurance providers can act proactively to help organisations manage and assess risk within their pharmacy setting.

Who Provides Indemnity Insurance For Locums?

In alphabetical order, the three most recognisable bodies that provide pharmacists with indemnity insurance are the National Pharmacy Association, the Pharmacist’s Defence Association & the Pharmacy Insurance Agency. All of whom provide a mixture of professional and legal advice, legal representation, industry news and proactive training to help manage risk to both pharmacies and pharmacists. Individual providers will require you to renew your insurance at different points during your relationship with them. Fees and costs may depend on your actions throughout a previous term. Many providers provide free pre-reg insurance, or reduced insurance, for newly qualified pharmacists.

What Next?

If you’re paying monthly and annual fees for professional indemnity insurance, you need to have a steady flow of locum work to justify your studies and your fees. Registering with Locate a Locum gives you access to over 4000 locum pharmacist shifts every month. There are currently over 8000 participating pharmacies across the UK, posting shifts in your town or city!

Do you want to be a Locum?

You'll need accountancy services, so check out our blog relating to finding you the best services in the UK!

Need a DBS Check?

Check out our DBS blog!

19th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

How To Treat Hay Fever, CPD

How To Treat Hay Fever, CPD

It’s that time of year again! Everywhere you look, people look like pandas, there’s mucus in the air and people with shares in Kleenex are laughing all the way to the bank! It’s hay fever season!

Hay fever is quite common and no doubt you’ll have patients coming your way in the not-so-distant future.

What are the symptoms?

Sneezing, a runny nose, the itchiest eyes in the world and grogginess. The symptoms are caused by an allergy to pollen, the proteins of which can cause swelling to your patients’ nose, eyes and sinuses.

I’m a hay fever sufferer and I hate this time of year. I can’t sit in the park without going semi-blind and I find it difficult to play golf. To be fair, I find it difficult to play golf at the best of times.

What your patients should avoid if they have a pollen allergy?
Patients essentially need to avoid going outside if they want to stay away from high concentrations of pollen. Pollen is emitted at varying times of year from a variety of plants. Trees and grass in the spring and summer, and weeds in the autumn.

You can check out the pollen levels at any given time with the help of the Met Office

How to treat hay fever and its symptoms?

Well, as of yet we can’t cure hay fever. But we can treat it and we can improve our patients’ quality of life. The best way to treat hay fever would honestly be to stay in orders for 8 months of the year, close the windows and pray that nobody comes to visit.

Alternatively, antihistamines can help to prevent an allergic reaction from occurring. A course of corticosteroids can help to reduce inflammation and swelling in your patients’ nose, throat and around their eyes.

There are lots of over-the-counter remedies available such as cetirizine and piriton. Be sure to warn people as to whether or not the tablets are drowsy/non-drowsy. You don’t want someone falling asleep at the wheel if they’ve just bought medicine from you. Some people get treatment on prescription.

If someone is a long-term sufferer, there is a treatment called immunotherapy, which helps build a resistance in the individual. The treatment can take months but there would be fantastic long term benefits for the person in question.

You can get hay fever at any age, although it usually begins in childhood or during the teenage years. It's more common in boys than girls. In adults, men and women are equally affected.

Self-help tips for patients

Wraparound sunglasses to keep pollen out of the eyes. Taking a shower and changing their clothes after being outdoors. Applying a small amount of Vaseline around their nostrils to help block pollen from entering the nose

Although hay fever is generally more annoying than harmful, you need to be careful when kids are involved. The effects of hay fever could result in an ear infection.

Remember, pharmacies add over 4500 locum shifts to our locum platform every month!! Get applying now!

12th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

Permanent Pharmacy Recruitment Blog

Introducing Thomas Mulholland, Permanent Pharmacy Recruitment Manager

Having worked in recruitment for over ten years in a variety of industries, I understand how important is for a business to plan their hires effectively to ensure that they not only attract top talent, but retain it.

My experience in the healthcare sector has enabled me to develop effective processes, and to act innovatively to reduce both costs and time for the hiring organisation, without diluting quality.

At Locate a Locum, we’re different from traditional recruitment agencies. We are specialist recruiters who only source pharmacist talent. Our market expertise, and our understanding of talent attraction drivers within the pharmacy sector, places us in the best possible position to attract the perfect candidate for your pharmacy.

We have the largest audience of pharmacists for any recruitment agency in the UK. Locate a Locum holds 2,300 pharmacist CVs, all of whom are actively looking for work. Our social media following reaches more than 10,000 pharmacists every week and our careers platform generates over 18,000 visits per month.

Our ability to communicate with your candidate market is second to none.

My staff and I are here to help your hiring process, to deliver high quality candidates and provide long term solutions for your business.

I will be writing a series of blogs over the coming weeks that will provide information for employers that allow you to maximise the value of your hiring processes. My next blog will be an introduction to talent acquisition and the importance of planning for your hires.

Until then, if you require any assistance, advice or information feel free to get in touch.

thomas@locatealocum.com 077 466 25940

11th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

Top 5 Reasons Not To Prescribe Antibiotics To Kids

Top reasons not to prescribe antibiotics to kids

There have been a lot of stories in the news recently, relating to false prescriptions resulting in death or major illness. So, this week, we're looking at some of the top reasons why you shouldn't prescribe antibiotics to children when they are suffering from a viral condition.

It can cause long term misconceptions of an allergy

When children have a viral illness, and are prescribed an antibiotic, they can often develop a rash or can begin vomiting. Often this is attributed to the antibiotic. However, in most cases, these symptoms are indicative of the viral illness itself, rather than the antibiotic. Throughout their development, there may be a misconception that the child is allergic to antibiotics, which may not be the case.

The child may actually be allergic to the antibiotic

The unfortunate event of anaphylaxis can scare every stakeholder in the treatment of the child and may call for an investigation into why the child was prescribed such a course of treatment

Diarrhoea & Nausea

It's extremely common that antibiotics can cause diarrhoea in infants. Mixed with profound nausea and vomiting, this can cause unnecessary and prolonged suffering for the child and their parents. It can be difficult to keep children hydrated, especially when they are unsure as to what dehydration feels like.

More serious side effects

It is possible that in rare cases, children could suffer from seizures, jaundice and even kidney failure


Antibiotics are expensive, and when they are continually prescribed for little or no positive effect, we see huge wastage to the public purse.

There are dozens of reasons why not prescribe antibiotics to children with viral infections. The main one being that they don't need one. They'll generally cause nausea, diarrhoea, dehydration and can create a false impression of it's long term effectiveness on the patient.

Sales Pitch!

And here we have the unapologetic sales pitch!

Did you know that Locate a Locum have over 4000 locum shifts available for the month of June? That's 4000, it wasn't a typo. Register your interest at Locate a Locum and start applying for shifts in your area, today.

10th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

Book Your Locum Pharmacists For Free!

Book Your Locum Pharmacists For Free!

At Locate a Locum, we always listen to you, the pharmacy managers, locum coordinators and hiring managers. On occasion, you may have difficulties managing multiple databases, dealing with multiple agencies and people can struggle when juggling a variety of locum attraction strategies. Some of you spend up to 8 hours per week sourcing locum cover, but what if you could book a locum within one minute?

To combat these inconveniences, we offer you the ability to manage every booking on one platform, using one database. We spend time and money attracting locum pharmacists to your jobs and we’re now offering you the chance to add your own regular locums to your account, so you can book them any time for free.

You can now use Locate a Locum to book your own locums through our platform, while at the same time availing of the thousands of other locums that we send your way! You’ll never have to use agencies again and you’ll only ever have to post shifts on one platform

We guarantee that your locum fill success rate will improve exponentially due to the increased number of locums that you have access to, saving you both time and money. Let us take away the hassle.

I know what you’re thinking, ‘will Locate a Locum charge me for booking my own locums?'

The answer is, no. You will not be charged a booking fee if you book one of your own locums through our platform.

If one of your regular locums aren’t available, you have a choice of 2,400 other locums, all of whom are actively looking for work throughout the UK, and who's credentials have been verified by our compliance team.

Locate a Locum is currently trusted by 8,000 pharmacies across the UK, 300 of whom are booking their own locums through our platform. If their locums aren’t available, hiring managers have been delving into our pool of candidates and increasing their fill rate.

It’s free to use the 'Book Your Own Locums' option. Get in touch with us right away and we’ll explain how to set up this game changing option!

5th May 2017 by Locate A Locum

PharmData, Data & Stock Analysis For Pharmacy Owners

Introducing, PharmData

PharmData is a reporting platform that allows the user to understand and compare their pharmacy's performance in comparison to those of their competitors over time.

Investigate and track script numbers, MUR and NMS figures, EPS nomination totals and much more! PharmData has data from every pharmacy across England and Wales, and can help with understanding how your pharmacy is performing in your local area.

PharmData allows the user to conduct an in-depth SWOT analysis, helping pharmacy owners and managers to better understand their strengths and weaknesses, in comparison to competitors.

The monthly reporting tool provides easy access to all relevant statistics, including how you are performing versus your competitors, the status of nearby surgeries, your market share at these surgeries, and any apparent trends. Colour-coded figures and high-contrast graphs make identifying any trends, a quick and easy process.

Having been recently shortlisted for the Online Initiative of the Year, by Chemist & Druggist, we’re proud of how easy our reporting tool has been proven to use, by thousands of users across the UK.

The feedback on our reporting platform has been very positive so far, with pharmacy owners remarking that it identifies issues which they were otherwise unaware of. Such issues can then be further explored using the other tools available on the PharmData website.

Find out how PharmData can help with your internal reporting, on one easy-to-read database. Visit the PharmData website, arrange a consultation with one of our experts and begin to understand your business, competitors and industry better than ever before.

If you're a pharmacy employer or locum coordinator who hasn't signed up to Locate a locum, you can do so on our Employer Page and start booking cover for shifts in less than one minute.

Alternatively, if you're interested in a permanent position, check out our careers platform.
Or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com

2nd May 2017 by Locate A Locum

How To Get A Locum Smart Card

Locum Pharmacist Smart Card. What, Who & Where?

We’ve been asked some questions recently about locum smart cards, where to get them and why anyone would need one. So, we’re using this week’s blog to give you guys some info on the subject. Don’t worry, it’s short and sweet, just like the process for getting your card.

What is Locum Smart Card?

A locum pharmacist smart card is a tool that allows locum pharmacists, or relief pharmacists, to work in various locations and pharmacies and have access to that site’s EPS. An EPS is an Electronic Prescription Service. The EPS contains patient information and allows for prescription information to be held and communicated between medical staff.

The smart card is also a data protection tool, ensuring that only individuals who are cleared to access information on the EPS, are able to do so. Your smart card contains some of your own personal information, connecting you to the card and the information that it accesses.

Who Needs a Smart Card?

Locums Pharmacists, Dispensers, Technicians and Relief Pharmacists need smart cards. Relief staff need to have their card configured to allow access to the regular pharmacies in which they work. Locum staff may own a card which is registered to larger locations or to pharmacies which operate in certain retail settings. Locums must have cards configured to allow them to work emergency shifts in premises in which they may not have previously worked.

Where do I get a Smart Card?

You can obtain a smart card by contacting your Local Registration Authority. You can do so through your local NHS Team. You should keep in regular contact with your Registration Authority to ensure that your smart card remains registered with the relevant pharmacies, in the relevant areas. There are intermittent technology and software updates on EPS, so regular contact with your LRA ensures that your card is up to date.

Not only will you need a smart card to fulfil your obligations as a locum, but you’ll need to ensure that you have an up to date DBS check. You can apply for a DBS with Locate a Locum.

Are you on the lookout for your next locum shift? Register and apply for work on our locum platform! We add over 1,200 shifts every week.

28th April 2017 by Locate A Locum

Find Locum Pharmacist Cover In Less Than One Minute!

Locate a Locum Record Booking Time Slashed: Pharmacy books a locum in under 60 seconds!

When our CEO Jonny Clarke was a locum pharmacist, he quickly became aware of the barriers that existed for locums when trying to source regular work, and those for pharmacy owners who needed to find locum cover for both holiday and emergency shifts.

Locums found it tough communicating their availability to pharmacies. Pharmacies in turn, found it difficult to track the availability of pharmacists. Some pharmacist managers have told us that they can spend up to 4 hours per week sourcing locum cover and carrying out checks.

To date, recruitment agencies have been trying to solve this problem but they can easily add to the overall cost and time delays.

As an alternative to the traditional agency, Jonny set up Locate a Locum. Locate a Locum is an online platform connecting pharmacists with employers. Our technology platform has proven to be faster and more cost effective than traditional recruitment agencies. We empower locum coordinators and pharmacy managers to advertise shifts and book locums in a matter of seconds, all in one easy-to-use location.

Locate a Locum has registered over 2300 pharmacists and services more than 8,000 UK and Irish pharmacies. This includes large multiples and an ever-growing body of independent pharmacies. We are always striving to improve the service that we offer and streamline our processes so that you can find the right locum, faster than ever.

On Thursday the 6th April 2017, Locate a Locum set a new personal record for the time taken between a pharmacy shift being uploaded, and a locum’s application being confirmed. A pharmacy in Bristol posted a shift at 09:41:37, and received an application at 09:42:01. This locum’s application was reviewed and the pharmacist was booked at 09:42:28. That’s how quickly and effectively our software can work for you.

Just think, you could have posted and received an application for the next shift you must fill, in the time taken to read this blog post! Sound good?

Locums are now taking bookings as far away as September 2017.

Get in touch and get your holidays covered! 028 907 28035

26th April 2017 by Locate A Locum

Healthy Eating For Pharmacists, Featuring Bav Heer

Healthy Eating For Pharmacists

We're all human. It's easy to grab a breakfast from McDonald's in the morning. We all gorge on comfort foods such as Malteasers and crisps after a long, hard day. Some of us think that we need 10 litres of coffee to stay awake and to function throughout the day.

What we really need, is advice from a nutrition expert such as Bav Heer, to get our diets back on track and to help us deal with the pressures of the job. Some of this advice could also be invaluable for you patients!

"The daily onslaught of demands on a pharmacist can be taxing both mentally and physically. Keeping your focus, mood and energy levels sustained are important to help you get through the day.

Many of you may experience the mid-afternoon dip (around 3pm) where you either want to clear the bench and have a nap on it, or you put on the kettle, get a caffeine hit and hopefully you'll survive until home time. Does this sound familiar? This can be a sign of chronic stress on your adrenal glands (the ones that keep you going).

The advice I can give you is to ensure that you firstly stay hydrated, as your concentration levels are affected by dehydration. Keep a bottle of water containing a slice of either fresh lemon or cucumber in front of your checking station.

Second, get some good brain foods into your diet. Your brain is 70% fat, and will be made of whatever you consume, so ensure you are taking your good fats from oily fish (herring, mackerel, salmon and fresh tuna). Include vegetarian options from walnuts, seeds (flax, pumpkin) some legumes and of course if you are a pro, then you know that Krill Oil is especially good for you. It’s structure is similar to the phospholipids in the brain.

The sugar roller-coaster...

Nothing is more taxing on your physiology than sugar levels bouncing up and down, along with the obvious energy dips. Consume foods that are digested slowly, (therefore release energy more gradually) this will help to maintain steady energy levels. Ensure there is protein in your breakfast, such as eggs, porridge with nuts and seeds. If you are in a hurry, then have a smoothie or protein shake, don’t run on empty. Your breakfast will set the metabolism for the day, if you get it right you won’t crave the bad stuff.

Snacking between breakfast and lunch can help to keep you going. Try having a piece of fruit with a few nuts to sustain you until lunch…whenever that may be. You can prepare a small container of a mix of nuts and seeds and carry it with you.

Are you getting enough Magnesium? This mineral has many benefits. Not only does it assist smooth muscle function, but it's good for moods and a good night’s sleep. There's nothing like a soak in Epsom salts for a good sleep and to relieve sore muscles.

Physiological stress, and mental stress have the same effects on your cortisol production. High stress levels result in cortisol being released continually. The effects of this can be insulin resistance, abdominal weight gain, muscle loss, irritability, and ladies… sorry to say, hormonal imbalances.

So it’s really important to nourish your body and brain. Exercise can help increase your stamina and lift your moods. Try to include a brisk 10 minute walk in the day, take deep breaths and focus on quietening your mind.

In summary, healthy eating for pharmacists:

Have a protein rich breakfast
Maintain hydration levels
Take healthy snacks along with you
Eat plenty of Omega 3 containing foods
Supplement with Magnesium citrate at least 200mg a day."

Part of the reason that locum pharmacists lose control of their diets is because of the travelling involved, and the stress of finding their next shift. Sign up to Locate a Locum and find work in your location. And maybe tell your colleagues about your new diet...

20th April 2017 by Locate A Locum

Your Guide To Practice Pharmacy

Your Guide To Practice Pharmacy
Aside from ‘government cuts’ and ‘mounting pressures,’ the real buzzwords in pharmacy for 2017 are, Practice Pharmacy.

To an extent, the separation of workloads, working patterns and the traditional segregation of staffing had built a palpable wedge between pharmacists, nurses and GPs. We had our own responsibilities and were accountable for our own departments & their outputs.

Placing pharmacists within the GP setting has changed this model. Some have approached these new roles with apprehension, others with enthusiasm. I’m probably somewhere in the middle. This is unknown territory, but the more I read into the roles and their perceived outcomes, the more enthused I am becoming.

Practice Pharmacists are part of a team that exists to ease pressures on hospitals, community pharmacies, carers and doctors. We are undertaking a new type of responsibility. A typical day can include carrying out medication reviews, answering telephone queries, dealing with repeat medications and acting as a triage for those with long-term and varying conditions, within a practice setting.

Prescription management is an important job function. You’ deal with medication that has been prescribed for patients having left hospitals, who may be entering care facilities. You’ll be the main point of contact for all medicine and prescription related queries in that locality.

When I worked in the hospital, I loved the one-to-one contact with patients. Helping people understand how to get the most out of their medication was one of the most rewarding parts of my day. Practice pharmacist have a huge clinical role to play.

Of course, there is an element to the role which includes auditing stock and procedures. You will be responsible for medicines and stock management.
How do I become a Practice Pharmacist?
There is a lot of training to be done around a Practice Pharmacist role. Becoming an independent prescriber is a must. Exemplary communication and an existing understanding of the workflow of a GP and nursing staff is a must.
Clinical experience is another necessity. If you’re lacking here, you could volunteer once a week with your local GPO.

Volunteering could also help you to understand the dynamic of a practice, and develop an understanding of how you could improve existing processes. You’ll need to have a record of building relationships across different disciplines, and maintain existing relationships with CCG colleagues, including CCG Pharmacists on prescribing related matters, to ensure consistency of patient care.

The NHS are providing intensive training programmes for those who register an interest in such a role, with career progression being one of the most important factors. As with a lot of interviews, the hiring party aren’t just interested in your experience, rather, they want to know how you are going to develop yourself within their workplace.

Locate a Locum can offer practical interview advice through a careers consultation, and we can help you gain clinical experience through our locum platform.

Is a practice pharmacy not for you? If you're an experienced clinician and you want to earn £60,000 per year, with a car allowance, check out our Careers Platform.

11th April 2017 by Locate A Locum

Does Locate A Locum Influence The Locum Pharmacist Rates On Its Platform?

‘Does Locate a Locum determine or influence the locum pharmacist rates that are advertised on its platform?’


Locate a Locum is a platform that connects pharmacists to pharmacies. We do not get involved in the negotiation of daily or hourly locum rates, whatsoever. Rates are set by the hiring companies/pharmacies.

Pharmacies post shifts on our site, these shifts are made available to pharmacists, said pharmacists then apply directly to the hiring pharmacy through our platform.

Users of our platform can search for shifts which carry rates that the individual pharmacist feels is appropriate for them. We never take a penny from any locum who uses our platform to book shifts.

There are also location specific variations to consider when searching for locum work on our platform. The rates in Northern Ireland are traditionally lower than those found throughout parts of England, Scotland and Wales. This is indicative of market forces in these areas. (Market forces include population density, average wages, local economy, availability of work, number of locums in that area, etc)

A screenshot posted on social media, does not necessarily reflect the context behind the advertised rate.

Like some job sites, such as Indeed, we give employers the opportunity to advertise work, and we give pharmacists the opportunity to apply for work. Indeed are not responsible for the salaries and rates which employers set. nor are we.

What we do offer, for free, is a centralised platform where a pharmacist can search and apply for shifts in relation to the date, rate and location of their choosing. Here, you can manage your diary and build working relationships with over 8,000 pharmacies across the UK. We're adding over 1200 shifts every week that you can apply for in less than 30 seconds.

To repeat, we do not take a penny from any locum who finds work through our platform. We do not determine or influence locum pharmacist rates.

If anyone needs any other information, please get in touch on 02078594613. We’re more than happy to answer any questions that you may have about our platform and services.

Alternatively, send your queries to info@locatealocum.com, we try to respond to all emails within 24 hours.

6th April 2017 by Locate A Locum

Meet The Team At Locate A Locum

Ever wonder who you're talking to on the phone, or receiving emails from at Locate a Locum?

Meet The Team At Locate A Locum

The Goonies, Manchester United in 1999, The Three Ninja Kids and the people who put a man on the moon, were all great teams. However, they couldn’t lace the boots of the team at Locate a Locum!

We’ve been described as being extraordinary, ridiculously good looking and uber-professional, by ourselves. What we lack in years, we make up for with hard work, long hours and a drive to be the best locum locaters in all the lands!

Jonny Clarke, CEO

Our resident CEO claims to be from the mean streets of Belfast, but those who really know him are aware that he was actually born and bred in South Africa! Jonny arrived in Northern Ireland on elephant-back when he was five years old and set up Locate a Locum shortly after graduating as a pharmacist from Queen’s. This once bedroom business (not that type) is now the market leader for locum recruitment in the UK. He claims to play the guitar and owns a gym membership, but has never been pictured with gym bag or with any musical instruments. At the time of writing this, April 2017, he’s engaged to the lovely Natalie, with a view to getting married in the Summer. (If Natalie’s still keen)

Michael Budden, Co-Founder

Michael’s a Belfast man with loud music on his mind. When he isn’t rolling out our brand strategy or working on our software, you’ll find him near a pub, full of burritos and sipping on some of Northern Ireland’s finest craft beers. A beard enthusiast who owns a pair of leather gloves, Michael loves rugby, technology and has a great talent for branding, evidenced by achieving the title of Head of Design at Randox in his mid-twenties.

Clare Saunders, Customer Service Administrator

Clare enters competitions on social media and wins them all. She’s been called the Coupon Queen, The Competition Queen and has recently been awarded the title of Competition Guru. At the time of writing, Clare is close to passing her driving test. You may have seen her name in the paper since then. Clare has three children and lives with her husband in Mallusk. She arrived at Locate a Locum with 10 years’ experience working in a variety of recruitment and administrative roles and has been vital to our growth throughout the South of England and Northern Ireland.

Thomas Mulholland, Recruitment Manager

Thomas is first and foremost, a Tottenham Hotspur fan. He’s currently receiving treatment for such a condition. A bit like Michael, Thomas sees himself as a connoisseur of craft beers and gins from around the globe. (Or from across the flat earth, if you're into that sort of thing) When he’s not recruiting pharmacy managers across the UK, Thomas pursues a keen interest in culture and arts. He has over 5 years’ experience of building recruitment teams in a variety of roles throughout Northern Ireland and England. We’re all expecting massive things from Thomas, so no pressure dude…

Alison Tham, Locum Coordinator

The newbie. At the time of writing, Alison is yet to complete her second month in our office and she’s yet to run away. Congratulations to all involved. She was welcomed to Locate a Locum on account of her background in recruitment, her impeccable phone manner and her knowledge of the Belfast night-club scene. Alison claims to run every morning, but not if it’s raining or if it looks like it may rain at some point during that week. She loves dogs, trying new restaurants and has a strange fascination with Taylor Swift. The police are aware.

Seán Webb, Digital Marketing

From the magnificent Newcastle in south Down, Seán’s the person who receives abuse for delivering poor Facebook Live videos and struggles with an addiction to burgers and milk. Allegedly has over five years’ experience in digital marketing, but we’re yet to see any evidence of this. He loves Manchester United more than life itself, is a former golfer and a keen follower of politics. He writes our blogs, carries out advertising campaigns and drinks coffee & Buckfast by the pint.

Conaire Creaney, Software Developer Extraordinaire

Conaire’s one of these lucky guys who has travelled the world. Japan? Done it. Vegas? Done it. County Cavan? Done it. An entrepreneurial guy, Conaire earned contracts with Deloitte and Toyota and worked in Australia for several years. He loves the start-up scene in Northern Ireland and has brought a great deal of experience to our team. In his younger years, Conaire was a keen Gaelic footballer in county Antrim and remains a sports fan. He spends his spare time following Manchester united and regularly visits coastal towns for a spot of surfing.

Paul McBride

Never the bridesmaid, always the McBride...

Like any angel, Paul came to us from the sky, in a plane. An RAF plane to be exact. 'Our Paul' was born and raised in Newtownards and is a self-taught software engineer. He builds websites and those websites work! A self-confessed nerd, he taught himself how to code as a hobby. His other interests include playing the guitar, trailing mud into the office from his bike and seeking world domination by trading Crypto-currencies!

So when you're on the phone to us, when you see our content online and when you're looking for your next locum shift, just remember that we're team of actual humans who are here doing our best for you :-)

30th March 2017 by Locate A Locum

There's More To Pharmacy Than Being A Pharmacist!

There’s More To Pharmacy Than Being A Pharmacist

We've handed this week's blog over to pharmacist, and Facebook personality extraordinaire, Hala Jawad! A bit like our CEO, Jonny, Hala is a pharmapreneur and she's impressing people all over the UK with her drive, work ethic and her genuinely happy demeanour!

“Hi guys, my name’s Hala, and I'm a pharmacist who’s passionate about all things pharmacy!

I’m one of the lucky ones to have been involved in many other activities outside of a traditional pharmacy career. I’ve tried my hand at some media-related performances, and I love writing blogs just like this! I’ve worked in a community pharmacy setting and as a GP practice pharmacist. Every role has been different, but equally vital to my learning process. I have developed a special interest in public health and improving patient outcomes.

The most rewarding part of my career to date has been the positivity and enthusiasm shown towards the pharmacy profession by patients and colleagues alike.

Giving back is important to me. I get a sense of satisfaction from helping others, especially the new generation of pharmacist who have graduated and completed their pre-reg year!

I'm humbled to be a Foundation Champion and I have recently become a GP practice pharmacist mentor for the RPS, helping and offering support to as many pharmacists a possible.

In a very short period after qualifying as a pharmacist, my hard work is beginning to pay off. I have received some accolades, such as being recognised as the very first Pharma Face, I’ve been referred to as The Brighton Titan and I’ve been shortlisted as one of the Top 50 Pharmacy Influencers by Chemist & Druggist.

I’ve become a public health moderator for the RPS network and I sit on a steering group for the RPS in Surrey. And as if I’m not busy enough already, I'll soon be standing for this year's RPS English Pharmacy Board elections!

My aim is to support and help as many pharmacists as possible to achieve their dreams and goals. I also want their voice to be heard as we innovate in our profession.

The future of pharmacy seems promising. The new roles appearing in practice pharmacy are exciting, we can play a vital role in freeing up time for GPs and act to keep people out of our crowded hospitals. I look forward to seeing a strengthened relationship between community pharmacy and GP practices.

I’m excited to involve myself in more activities outside of the dispensary and I’d encourage everyone to do the same, you’ll have a ball!”

By registering with Locate a Locum, you can save time searching and applying for both locum shifts and permanent job opportunities. With more free time, you can see more of your family and friends, and you can get involved in other pharmacy-related activities, just like Hala.

Do you want to access 1,200 locum shifts every week? Sign up today and start receiving alerts about jobs near you!

21st March 2017 by Locate A Locum

Your Guide To IR35 & Locum Pharmacist Accounting Services

Locum Pharmacist Accounting Services

Have you, like thousands of other locum pharmacists, been worried about potential changes to IR35?

Are you worried about paying more tax, more national insurance and ensuring that your accounts match what may be expected, post Spring Budget?

We've received many emails and phone calls from worried locums, just like you, asking for advice on how to deal with tax and national insurance changes for the self-employed.

What does IR35 mean for locum pharmacists?

Well, new regulations are (apparently) being introduced from April 2017 which could affect the amount of tax and national insurance that locums have to pay. HMRC findings estimate that only 10% of personal service companies who are supposed to apply IR35 to their working arrangement, actually do so. To ensure greater compliance, HMRC are changing the rules so that the onus is now on the worker to pay the IR35 fee.

The changes are supposed to take effect from 6 April 2017. But pressure from the media and both internal and external government opposition, means that these changes may not actually be rolled out. Confusing, we know!

These changes may impact on locums (whether paid by an agency or through any NHSDE who are not currently being paid via PAYE. If you receive a payslip each week that clearly shows that tax and national insurance have been deducted from your earnings then you are a PAYE worker and IR35 does not apply to you. Hurray!

However, if you own your own limited company, we suggest that you get in touch with either HMRC, or our friends at Crunch accounting.

Crunch is one of the leading accounting firms in the UK, and they’re here to tell you about their services and how they can work for you.

“As a locum pharmacist, you get the freedom to work on your terms and achieve a better work/life balance. The last thing you want is to be worrying about your tax and accounting. That’s where we come in. At Crunch, our accounting service is trusted by over 9,000 satisfied clients, including locums just like you.

Our accounting packages combine online accounting software with unlimited access to advice from accountants. Your accounts can be accessed anytime, anywhere, while our accredited accountants are on hand to answer all your IR35-related queries.

Packages from £29.50+VAT / month
Plus, all accounting clients get a dedicated client manager. Available by phone or email, they’ll get to know you and your business and will deal with HMRC on your behalf - leaving you to concentrate on what you do best.

And with locum pharmacist accounting services starting at just £29.50+VAT per month, we’re more affordable than your average traditional accountant.

More than accounting
We’re not just expert accountants - we also provide a range of business services, all tailored to the self-employed. Whether you’re looking to sort your business insurance, get financial advice on investments and pensions, or secure a mortgage for your dream home, we’re here to help, every step of the way.

Free consultation
Arrange a free consultation with one of our experienced advisers and they’ll cut through the jargon, explain your options, help with concerns surrounding IR35 and help you decide on what’s best for you. Whether you’re just considering starting out a locum or are already up and running, we can help.”

If you have queries about IR35, get in touch with the guys at Crunch. They can answer all the intricacies related to tax and national insurance changes and they can explain what these changes might mean for you.

That's one less thing to worry about!

Anyway, you have to earn money first before you worry about how much tax you'll pay!

Are you aware that you receive a £50 bonus after you work your 10th locum shift through Locate a Locum? Sign up today and get applying for some of the 1,200 shifts that we add every week!

Maybe you're on the lookout for a permanent job? Check out our careers platform.
Or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com

16th March 2017 by Locate A Locum

Are You Facing Queries On Gluten Free Food Prescribing

Gluten Free Food Prescribing?
Gluten free food has been in the headlines across the UK for some time now, most notably for the reduction in availability on prescription, as departments seek to cut costs. But as a non-Coeliac, dispensing gluten free food, you may be surprised by the options and opportunities when serving Coeliac customers.

For those pharmacists seeing a reduction in gluten free prescribing, this may be due to your local CCG or GP service. Some CCGs have issued a restrictive gluten-free prescribing policy, while others have stopped the service altogether.

A map of availability can be found on the Coeliac Society UK website, along with directions on campaigning against the removal of gluten free food from prescription.

In January, following a meeting with the Patient and Client Council, Gluten Free Ireland and the Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Board (HSCB), the HSCB issued a notice to GP surgeries, reiterating that gluten free food is to remain available on prescription.

In Scotland, the Gluten-free Food Service allows diagnosed patients to routinely visit their community pharmacies without the need to revisit their GP. Registration forms for patients are available through GP surgeries and dietitians.

For those newly diagnosed, the route to obtaining gluten free food through your pharmacist is not a straightforward one. The first step is a blood test but this is usually only carried out where Coeliac disease is suspected and not a matter of routine.

Many people will also try to self-diagnose the condition by opting for a gluten free diet but to get positive results in a blood test and subsequent biopsy, they must return to eating gluten, potentially making themselves sick again until they are formally diagnosed.

With a blood test completed, the GP may then refer the patient to a gastroenterologist to perform a biopsy to confirm the condition. Even with a negative blood test, the patient may still be referred, if Coeliac-like symptoms persist.

Patients suffering from the rarer Dermatitis Herpetiformis form of Coeliac disease, may also undergo a skin biopsy. Coeliacs are also prone to anaemia due to iron deficiency and may be further tested for several vitamin or mineral deficiencies.

It is generally advised that diagnosed patients also see a dietitian but this does not always happen.

Gluten Free Food on Prescription
With a diagnosis confirmed, the next step is the selection of foods. These are decided by the Advisory Committee on Borderline Substances (ACBS) and are defined as staple foods:

biscuits or crackers
cakes and pastries
gravies and sauces

The point system will allow patients to choose their staple requirements with brand availability varying by supplier and pharmacy.

Coeliac UK publish a list of commercial brands available on prescription here:

Supporting Coeliacs
As a pharmacy, there are number of ways you can support Coeliacs in your community. Patients with Coeliac disease are loyal to the brands they like as some products are seen as being very poor quality, particularly with regard to bread and biscuits.

This is more acute among newly diagnosed patients versus those diagnosed in childhood where a more recent comparison with regular bread is made.

A wide range of gluten free foods that are frequently partnered with the prescribed foods are now available, such as pizza toppings, jams, spreads, ready meals and breakfast cereals. This gives your pharmacy the opportunity to cross sell a range of products while providing a one stop shop for Coeliacs.

Shopping for gluten free food is often a challenge with gluten free products mixed throughout supermarket shelves, resulting in what the gluten free community refer to as “the treasure hunt”.

A complete list of gluten free food is published annually by Coeliac UK for members and a free list of gluten free foods in UK supermarkets is published by Gluten Free Ireland, updated bi-monthly.

Gluten free events are also very popular. Utilising the database of patients, providing dietitians for advice and offering a range of products for sale, local events have seen turn outs of over 100 people to small events, simply because they are exclusively gluten free.

There are also strong links between Coeliac disease and vitamin deficiency as well as lactose intolerance, opening up further opportunities to provide a range of products which are well suited to providing much appreciated support for the physical and mental well-being of the patients.

In Northern Ireland, Gluten Free Ireland has run a number of free events through local pharmacies and see large turn outs along with an increase in product awareness and excellent patient feedback for the pharmacy.

You can find out more at Gluten Free Ireland!

10th March 2017 by Locate A Locum

7 Tips For A Locum Pharmacist To Deal With Stress

Locum Pharmacist Tips

What gets you stressed? Maybe it’s the regular job hunt? Maybe you get anxious about driving long distances and taking up a new role? We’ve provided some quick-fire solutions to help de-stress your life and to help you get a great night’s sleep!

Take the Train or the Bus to Work

Yep, public transport can be quite annoying at times. Buses can be late and trains can smelly. But using public transport in the morning and evening is a great way of unwinding. Reading our favourite book or magazine helps us enter a state of calm before and after our working day. It can also be a great time to catch up on some sleep. Be careful though, you don’t want to miss your stop!

Take a 10 Minute Walk at Lunch

Getting in a quick walk at lunch time can help get the endorphins going. The fresh air can be a great relaxant. It’s good to escape from the dispensary for a few minutes and have some quality ‘me time,’ where you can put the world to rights in your head and plan that weekend away that you need!

Listen to Some Music

Now, this doesn’t necessarily have to be the sound of waves hitting a rock, nor does it have to be the dulcet tones of Westlife or Rick Astley. Listen to what makes you happy. I actually feel better after listening to some heavy metal. Listening to your favourite music has a calming effect and can also help remember the good times that you associate with those songs. A little escapism can help to break up your day and reinvigorate you for the mayhem /joys of the job that may lie ahead.

Get Yourself Over to YouTube

Are you into videos of dogs playing with their tails, babies laughing or things getting blown away in the wind? Get yourself onto YouTube! Having a laugh is a great way to brighten up your day and is a great way to remove some of the stress from your life. Pharmacists know that laughter is the best medicine. (Sort of)


Yoga isn’t just about contorting your body to look like a tree. It’s a fantastic way to help control your breathing, to release endorphins and to bring a sense of serenity to your otherwise hectic lifestyle. Regular exercise can be hard to fit in when you’re living on the road without a routine. There are lots of quick and intense workouts that you can do to help de-stress and stay in shape.

Eat a Banana

Potassium helps to regulate blood pressure, which can rise during times of stress. Some people find that eating a banana when they’re feeling stressed can help improve energy and can fend of the effects of stress. A banana a day keeps the stress levels at bay!

Sign Up To Locate A Locum

Instead of running around the country, handing out business cards, relentlessly checking job boards and worrying if recruiters will contact you about job opportunities, you can sign up to Locate a Locum for free! We can save you time, we can help you avoid stress and we’ll ensure that you receive relevant job updates every morning!

For more information on how you can deal with stress, check out the NHS Choices website.

Check out our Careers website to view our existing permanent positions or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com

1st March 2017 by Locate A Locum

From Frocks To Pharmacy - Rebecca Maguire

A Very Different Approach To A Pharmacy Career

We all know the drill. A Levels, Pharmacy Degree, MPharm, Pre-Reg year, Pharmacy job, and that’s it…

However, not everyone takes the traditional route into pharmacy. Some try other careers first, some become quite entrepreneurial. Others pursue their personal dreams while still committing to their professional career. Some people need more than a 9:00 - 6:00 job.

Take for instance, one of our Locum pharmacists, Rebecca Maguire. You may have seen Rebecca on your television screen or on the side of various beauty products, but for all her celebrity, she’s still committed to her career as a pharmacist.

This is Rebecca’s story.

“I have one very proud moment in my life, which is the day that I (eventually) graduated from Queen’s University. This seems quite a normal event in some people’s lives, and could possibly mundane. However, behind the scenes I didn't experience the cliché student life. My journey was a little different.

During the second year of my studies, I entered the Miss Ireland competition, thinking that I had nothing to lose and that I’d have some fun along the way. I didn’t take it too seriously, and I wasn’t aware of what potential doors that the event could open for me. I suppose that was the most exciting part, not knowing what could happen next!

Beyond my expectations, I ended up winning Miss Ireland, which saw me go from normal everyday student, to the Miss World pageant! I remember the day after I won, after the whirl wind of press and photos thinking one thing; ‘how the hell am I going to tell Professor Jones that I need to go to the Miss World event in the middle of term? This is hardly pharmacy related!’

After a lot of thought, I decided to take the year out from my pharmacy course. However, I always knew that it was very important to return to my degree. I travelled with the Miss World Organisation all over China and Mongolia to compete and represent Ireland on the world stage. From West Belfast to appearing in Vogue, eh?

I knew that I had to finish my pharmacy studies, and I knew that it was not going to be easy.

After winning Miss Ireland, I had a lot of travelling to undertake. I spent my year-out travelling the world. I had experiences that I simply wouldn’t have had if I had pursued my pharmacy career in the traditional fashion. Pardon the pun. Most of my peers on the modelling scene are committed to solely pursuing that career, but I love how I’d married the two.

While studying, I remember having to run to class in the morning, sweating and wearing last night’s makeup, with mad hair!

I got asked about pharmacy all the time on my travels, and still do. I’m happy to talk about my career in the dispensary! It may not be as glamorous, but I get a different type of satisfaction from dealing with patients every day.

I’m proud of how I could juggle an international modelling career with arriving to class on time and submitting assignments on time. Well, most if the time!

I'm also very proud to be both a Queen’s graduate and a representative for the pharmacy profession. Also, it's an ice breaker sometimes showing up to locum to find yourself on a poster in the window...yes that’s me on that bottle of tan!

Pharmacy, as we all know is a very demanding degree, but juggling my studies with a full time modelling career prepared me for my current career as a pharmacist;

Time management, communication, punctuality and organisation are extremely important aspects of being an ambassador for your county, as well as having to deal with some divas now and again!

Sometimes I wonder, ‘how the hell did I manage all that?’

Another proud moment, which book-ended my time spent travelling and studying, was when Queen’s University asked me to be the poster girl for Summer Graduation in 2015; at last, something I was good at!

Since graduating, I have worked in various locations through Locate a Locum. Locum work has given me the flexibility to still model from time to time, while still being wholly committed to my pharmacy career.

I feel very lucky to have experienced what I have in the past couple of years, but I'm also glad I have such a good degree to stand by me. That’s the thing, if you feel the need to pursue something else, if you have other dreams that may take up a great deal of your time, pharmacy will always be here for you.

Don’t turn down opportunities to be happy. I didn’t give up on my dreams and it’s all turned out great!”

If, like Rebecca, you’re interested in locum work, sign up to our Locum platform. We add 1,200+ shifts every week!

We’re also currently recruiting for permanent roles on our Careers Portal, let's kick-start your pharmacy career!
or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com

Got an idea for a story? Get in touch with us!

22nd February 2017 by Locate A Locum

The Pharmacist's 4 Step Guide To Using LinkedIn

Pharmacy Blog, LinkedIn
For many pharmacists, LinkedIn is a step into the unknown. LinkedIn is viewed as a place for marketers, recruiters and business owners who are trying to secure crucial deals. Only, it’s much more than those things. It can be a fantastic place for us pharmacists.

I love using LinkedIn, it’s a great space to share ideas, to share articles and to keep up-to-date with pharmacy news in any given location or specialism. It’s also a great place to find work.

Is LinkedIn an online CV database?
Well yes, there is that element. There are a lot of recruiters on LinkedIn, and they’re trained to find people just like you. They may discover your profile after searching for a Pharmacist, if they have a job available. The clearer you lay out your experience, the best they can qualify you for any available roles. If you’ve stated your experience properly with the appropriate job titles, I’d expect your private message inbox to be busy with recruiters approaching you with jobs!

Who are you and why are you here?
My profile contains an image of me, my job title, place of work and location. We can also give people an insight into our past with regards to previous roles that we held and where we studied.

Why do we do this? Well, using LinkedIn is a bit like networking at an event. We don’t (usually) walk around with masks, refusing to tell people who we are or what we’re doing. On LinkedIn, we want people to be able to search for, and find us. Otherwise, we can’t communicate. It also helps us to search for people who are relevant to our field.

I have 500+ Connections, meaning that there are over 500 other brains that I am using to gain information from. As I said previously, LinkedIn is a great space for sharing ideas. I try to search for and connect with as many pharmacists as I can. I read their articles and watch their videos. With LinkedIn, every day is a school day.

Who is saying what, and where are they saying it?
I love joining Groups. Groups are where we can talk to like-minded pharmacists away from the public eye. We can start our own conversations in these groups, or we can join the conversations of others. I manage several groups, this allows me to control who enters the group and I can prevent people from invading what others see as a safe place. People can share articles here, videos and their own opinions.

LinkedIn is a bit like Facebook in the respect that you have your news feed, where you can see a running spiel of activity from your connections. Maybe you’re bored with chatting about changes to pharmaceutical regulation, and you'd prefer to watch your friend’s video about emerging technology, or their charitable work. We also have a private messaging platform that we can use. This is generally where you look for work away from the prying eye of your boss, or it’s where you can set up meetings with a degree of privacy.

What can I say and how do I say it?
This is where we need to be careful. Does your employer want you watching ninja videos and sharing them when there’s a queue of patients waiting on scripts? Definitely not. So, be careful what you say and where you say it. Some companies have their own guidelines for staff usage of social media. I try to be as diplomatic as possible. Our staff are great at pushing out our message, while also pursuing their own learning and online interactions. I trust them to represent us properly online.

You can share your opinions and information in the form of articles, prose, videos or by sharing others’ content. I love the content sharing element of LinkedIn. My peers share pharmacy news, information on CPD courses and I can promote my business to relevant people. If you’re running a business, you may wish to spend money on Sponsored content. Sponsored content allows you to push your content to people in certain locations, with specific job titles. I share my weekly blog article on LinkedIn and have some great feedback!

So, should a Pharmacist be on LinkedIn?
Yes, I’d highly recommend it. I join and manage pharmacy-related groups, I connect with pharmacy-related people and I have been able to build myself a central platform on which to find all pharmacy news across the UK and Republic of Ireland. LinkedIn has been vital to promoting the Locate a Locum brand, it’s helped us fill locum and permanent jobs, it’s helped me to connect with pharmacy employers and it can help you too!

The next time you're on LinkedIn, come and get involved in some of our Groups!
Pharmacy Jobs UK
Locum Pharmacists UK

If you're currently using LinkedIn to search for either permanent or temporary pharmacist jobs, you could have more luck by visiting our Careers platform or by signing up to Locate a Locum!

15th February 2017 by Locate A Locum

The Pharmacist's Guide To - Fit To Practise

Pharmacists, Fit To Practise

Imagine this situation; After your Christmas party, you reluctantly drive to work the following morning. You’re not feeling great, but you assume that enough time has passed so that you’re legally allowed to drive. Only, when pulled over by the police, their breathalyser has other ideas and you get prosecuted for drink-driving. This has happened to hundreds of decent citizens across the UK, whose momentarily lack of judgement has had a detrimental effect on their lives and careers.

Being prosecuted for drink-driving could have a major impact on your pharmacy career and could lead to an investigation into your ‘fitness to practise.’

What is 'fitness to practise?'

A ‘fitness to practice’ check examines a pharmacist’s ability to safely fulfil their duties. The vast majority of pharmacists across the UK are fit to practise and do not pose any risk to patient safety. However, on occasion, pharmacist do come under investigation as to whether or not they pose a risk to patient safety, or themselves.

Oliver Mundy is the managing director for Fit to Practise Support. He saw a necessity for pharmacists, and other self-employed professionals, who needed to consider their own futures and support if their career was ever brought under the microscope.

So, what is FTP Support?

FTP Support offers a range of support to individuals and organisations to mitigate, manage and support fitness to practise issues. We spoke to Oliver about how his organisation operates;

“FTP Support membership entitles you to free advice and support in the event of your being investigated by your regulatory body.

FTP Support provides fitness to practise solutions to locum pharmacy professionals and organisations in the pharmacy sector. This includes providing locum pharmacy professionals with support and representation in relation to their fitness to practise.

We use expert consultants; investigators and decision-makers with extensive experience of working for regulatory bodies within the healthcare industry. These consultants provide our members with empathetic support should they find their fitness to practise under investigation by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).”

Is it just for locum pharmacists?

In a word, no.

FTP Support has delivered services to numerous pharmacy owners across the UK.

“FTP Support has trained Celesio and Well Pharmacy staff on fitness to practise principles. This training also included role plays with delegates appearing before a mock Fitness to Practise Committee to improve their understanding of the role of a witness within the process.

FTP Support also offers a pre-emptive inspection service for pharmacy owners due to experience the GPhC’s new inspection model. This service mirrors the GPhC’s inspection of compliance to the required standards and provide a report which details how you are performing against the required standards. This allows you to take action to remedy any issues prior to the formal inspection, and improves your knowledge of compliance and fitness to practise.”

How do I find out more?

If you’re a locum pharmacist or a pharmacy owner, get in touch with Fit To Practise Support and find out how they could protect you and your staff throughout your career.

If you’re a locum pharmacist and need to access your next locum shift, you can do so on our locum platform!

If you have a story or a service that you feel may benefit the lives of your fellow professionals, or if you think it may be entertaining, send your suggestions to info@locatealocum.com

8th February 2017 by Locate A Locum

Noelle Holmes - Locate A Locum - Award Winner

Pharmacist Award

A little bit of a shift in direction this week with our blog. One of our locums, Noelle, won the Pharmacy Hero Award at the annual Pharmacy Focus Awards!! We couldn't be more proud! So, instead of us telling you Noelle's story, we've let her deliver this week's blog, in her own words!

"Community pharmacy can be a funny one...working full time can be like a 28-day Groundhog Day as the same patients arrive in for their monthly instalments. I mean, there is very little glitz and glamour, and it's not like A-list celebrities pop in for some Calpol. (I will say at this point that I have sold eyeliner to former Miss NI, Tiffany Brien, exciting stuff!)

But, every now and again something happens that makes you realise why you decided to choose Pharmacy as a career. The Saturday in question was just like any other one- full of Medi-doses. However, with the weekend students fresh from a week in Belfast, Saturdays tend to be light-hearted and quite enjoyable.

The relaxed mood lasted up until about 12.30 when one of the staff came to where I was checking and said ever so calmly, " There's a man out there, in anaphylactic shock...he wants an EpiPen." I honestly thought he was joking as the conversation previous was about how nothing ever exciting or dramatic happens to us.

But as I popped my head round it was clear to see that it was no wind up...a man was leaning over the counter gasping for breath.

So, what do I do? I don't know this man from Adam. Can he talk? Surely for an emergency supply I need to carry out an interview to get all his details, all his doctor’s details and properly dispense the item? Please God let us have an EpiPen!

After this initial rush of panic and inner argument with myself over what to do, I decided to bypass all of the things I'd been taught in university and Pre-Reg, bar one handy piece of advice that we had been given one day in Pharmacy Practice – ‘Treat your patient how you would want your granny treated.’

I simply grabbed the EpiPen, checked it was in date, showed it to the man and explained that if possible he should inject it himself and handed it over. All the while, rehearsing in my head, the training I had received from St John's Ambulance during my Pre-Reg, just in case things took a turn for the worse and I would have to use the EpiPen myself.

Thankfully the man in question managed the procedure himself. As we waited on the ambulance, I tried my best to reassure him that he wold be fine, and kept him calm so as to not exacerbate his condition.

After he was safely taken away, I'm not ashamed to admit I lost my cool, thanking God that the experience was over. Did I do that right? Should I have done something else to help? What will manager say? Luckily enough, the pharmacy I was working in at the time completely supported my decision and reassured me that I had acted correctly.

After all the drama died down and I had talked to the patient, who by the way was now perfectly healthy) I realised that although I was just doing my job, other pharmacists had been faced with the same situation which ended much differently. The mother of Emma Sloan from Dublin was refused an EpiPen when her daughter was suffering from anaphylaxis on a street in the city, unfortunately Emma died as a direct result of this.

Last month I was delighted to be awarded The Pharmacy in Focus- Pharmacy Hero Award at the Crowne Plaza in Belfast, for my actions on that Saturday. This was a fantastic event and it was a delight to attend with my family to receive my award. I'm ever so grateful to them for highlighting how serious the situation was at the time.

Hopefully someone reading this will remember the piece of advice I was given, ‘Always treat your patient how you would want your granny treated."

Thanks to Noelle's quick thinking, she was able to save a life. Pharmacists don't get enough credit at times, and we want to highlight your stories.

If anyone has a pharmacy story that they want to tell, get in touch and we'll have a chat about it.We want everyone to help spread the word of how absolutely fantastic us Pharmacists are!! If you have a pharmacy story,email us at info@locatealocum.com

If you're a locum and want to apply for shifts in your area, register today on the Locate a Locum platform.

Alternatively, if you're after a new permanent position, you find these on our Careers Website
Or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com

2nd February 2017 by Locate A Locum

Pharmacy Technology To Cut The £4bn NHS Agency Bill

Pharmacy Technology

A company in Belfast is aiming to cut the NHS agency bill with a new piece of software, initially aimed at helping pharmacies and pharmacists to advertise and fulfil both planned and emergency cover.

Locate a Locum was born as a ‘bedroom business’ by pharmacist and CEO Jonathon Clarke, and is on course to secure its second round of funding, a further £300,000. The company’s valuation, within a year of going to market, now exceeds £1.5m.

With the help of co-founder and developer Michael Budden, the Locate a Locum platform has been designed to connect pharmacies with pharmacists in a matter of seconds. Through the assistance of Northern Ireland’s prestigious Entrepreneurial Spark programme, this once ‘bedroom business’ has become a globally scalable solution for healthcare providers across the world, within 12 months.

The capability to save the NHS, retail and community pharmacists time, and more importantly money, is staggering. The NHS currently spends £4bn per year on agency fees. Locate a Locum can save the NHS an average of £105 per day for each temporary member of staff.

Jonathon Clarke gave an insight into the inspiration for the software. ‘The idea for Locate a Locum was born initially out of a desire to help secure locum work for myself. I was sick of driving around the country, handing out business cards or spending my mornings on the phone. As the concept grew, and through my research, I realised the waste that was happening in our National Health Service with regards to agency fees. I’d heard of agencies charging up to 50% of daily fees to fill locum shifts, it’s scandalous. I knew that something had to be done about that and I saw my idea as a solution that could help to save tens of millions of pounds to the public purse every year.’

In just a matter of months, Locate a Locum has onboarded thousands of pharmacist across the UK, and services over 8,000 pharmacies, including big players such as Boots, Well and Rowlands. Andy Lawson, Pharmacist Development Manager for Boots spoke highly of the team and the technology that they’ve developed. “We’ve received really good support from the team at Locate a Locum, their staff have been very helpful and the locums that we’ve hired through the platform have all received very good feedback from our teams. The new website is easy to use and they have taken on any suggestions that we’ve had on board.”

CXO and developer, Michael Budden, speaks highly of their creation. ‘The beauty of the platform isn’t just that it’s pleasing on the eye, but it allows pharmacies to advertise and fill shifts in seconds. Pharmacies don’t need to go to traditional job boards or agencies anymore. They don’t need to spend exorbitant amounts of money on recruitment fees either. We’ve received excellent feedback from pharmacists who receive alerts to their phone relating to available shifts, they can apply for these shifts in just a few clicks. We’re extremely proud of what we’ve built.’

If you’re a pharmacist and want to secure your next locum shift, you can find out more at www.locatealocum.com.
If you’re a pharmacy and want to cut down your agency bill while also saving time and resources, get in touch with the team at locate a Locum.

Phone: 07512870184

Or write us: info@locatealocum.com

26th January 2017 by Locate A Locum

Pharmacist DBS Check - Locate A Locum

Pharmacist DBS Check
Your guide to a pharmacist DBS check! DBS (Disclosure Barring Service) helps employers to make safer recruitment decisions and stop unsuitable people from working with vulnerable adults and children.

As pharmacists may have access to vulnerable adults and children it is a requirement that they also have a DBS check completed.

It is becoming more frequent now that DBS is an essential requirement to working as a locum pharmacist. All the large pharmacy multiples ask for it as part of their registration process.

Employed pharmacists also have a requirement to complete a DBS check for their employer.

Pre-Registration Students:
Most universities carry out enhanced checks for the students however the validity of the check ends when students enter paid work as a pre-registration pharmacist.

Locate a Locum can provide DBS checks
Locate a Locum offers a quick, simple and cost effective method to persons wanting to obtain a DBS check.

DBS Process:

  1. Email info@locatealocum.com to request a pharmacist DBS check
  2. Our team will email you a secure link to complete the online application
  3. Complete the secure online payment
  4. Print your verification form and take to your nearest Post Office. You will require a minimum of 3 identity documents to prove your identity.

DBS Update Service
This service is provided annually and can be of benefit to all pharmacists. By registering with the service, it keeps your certificate valid and ensures employers that your certificate is current and up to date.

To join the update service please visit : www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service.
The certificate must be registered with the annual update service within 19 days of receipt..


  1. How much does it cost to get a pharmacist DBS check through Locate a Locum:
    It costs only £65 to get a DBS check via Locate a Locum. We believe this is the cheapest on the market available to pharmacists

  2. How do I pay for the Pharmacist DBS Check:
    We facilitate payment by the online secure payment portal PayPal after you complete your application. If you do not have a PayPal account, select the option to pay with credit/debit card.

  3. Why do I need to get my documents verified at the Post office?
    Under strict new DBS regulations, they must ensure that documents are not only identity checked but also the individual is checked against the documents provided. Any breach of this will be considered fraudulent activity and will render your DBS check invalid.

  4. How long does the DBS process take?
    DBS state that certificates can take up to 6 weeks however the majority of certificates are processed within only 2 weeks.

  5. Why is the annual update service important?
    It is important to register with the update service within 19 days of receiving your certificate as this allows you to carry your DBS check between employers. The update service is the easiest way for you to have a current, valid and up to date DBS check.

At present, Locate a Locum are providing the cheapest DBS checks in relation to our competitors. To start the process, and to secure your DBS for only £65, email your details to info@locatealocum.com

Are you interested in accessing over 5000 locum shifts every month, across the UK? Sign up here to set up an account and apply for jobs in your location!

Alternatively, if you find yourself in search of a permanent pharmacist job, check out our careers site!

19th January 2017 by Locate A Locum

Find A Permanent Pharmacist Job

Finding a permanent pharmacist job

What I’ve learned in my young(ish) life, is that everyone is different. We all have different familial experiences, we have different aspirations and our priorities in life are different. Some locums want a change and desire a permanent pharmacist role.

Some people love the buzz of being a locum pharmacist. They love the variety that it brings. They love the potential for travel and they enjoy the challenge of working with different teams in different pharmacies.

For some, that buzz fades and they want to settle down sooner than others. Taking on the world becomes secondary to taking on a mortgage. The challenge of working with different teams is replaced by the challenges of screaming children and Japanese-knot weed infestation. (Another story for another time.) My challenge changed from being a locum pharmacist, and became building a platform that made the lives of pharmacists and pharmacies a great deal easier!

Most locums, at some point, turn their hand to a permanent role, in a set location. Whether it be in a hospital, a care home, in a community pharmacy or elsewhere. Locate a Locum understand this transition and we’re here to help. A permanent role can offer stability, a regular income and career advancement opportunities.

So, we're delighted to announce the launch of our new Careers site!

Right now, we have jobs available for Pharmacist Manager, Relief Pharmacist and Support Pharmacist positions. Our website is super easy to use. Simply search our live interactive map, see a position that you like and click apply. Attach your CV and a member of our team will be in touch to discuss the next steps in your pharmacist career.

Our blog content will vary over the weeks ahead to help you acquire the permanent pharmacist role that you want, long term. Need interview advice? We got it!

Not only can you apply for live roles on our site, but if you contact our team and let us know your career plans, we can actively search for work and canvass employers on your behalf. We don’t advertise every role that is available. Our relationship with large multiples and individual pharmacies allows us to pitch your skills better than our competition. We’re certain of that.

We’re here help people gain their first locum shift after completion of their pre-reg year, we’re here to help you pursue the travelling that you wish, and we’re here to ensure that you get that permanent pharmacist role when the time comes.

We’re here to help your pharmacist career, every step of the way.

Visit our careers site and have a look for yourself, or get in touch to speak to our team about your dreams for your career and we’ll endeavour to help.

Are you a pharmacy employer? Advertise with Locate a Locum and you’ll reach an audience that currently comprises of 2,300 pharmacists, 800 of which reside in Northern Ireland. We can reach candidates, not only through our existing platform, but through email and social media campaigns.

Get in touch at 02078594613 to find out more about how we can find pharmacists in your area!

12th January 2017 by Locate A Locum

10 Tips To Minimise Pharmacy Dispensing Errors

Pharmacy Dispensing Errors

Pharmacists are human, and humans make mistakes. With the greatest will in the world and with the best training provided and implemented, we can still make mistakes. The best pilots on the planet can make mistakes.

Being a pharmacist, or working in a pharmacy, comes with huge pressures and responsibilities. Patients’ lives are in our hands. I got great satisfaction from knowing that I made a positive impact in peoples’ lives every day, but sometimes the pressures of our working environment can lead to mistakes being made.

So, how can we reduce, or eradicate, the chances of making mistakes?

Perform A Clinical & Accuracy Check

Transcription errors happen regularly, the vast majority of which can be amended at the source. Having multiple checks at this stage of the dispensing process can reduce the potential for a mistake to be made. It is also vital to ensure that patient identity is verified and that their medical history has been made available to you the pharmacist. It is useful to know the person’s age, gender, allergies and what other medications they may be taking.

Confirm That The Prescription Is Genuine, Correct & Complete.

Second guessing and assuming, are frequently associated with dispensing errors. We assume that repeat prescriptions were checked in the previous instance. If there is any ambiguity about a script, ask the doctor for clarification on abbreviations, dosage and/or decimals placings. All verbal communications regarding a script should be documented to encourage accountability, transparency and to keep us all safe.

Zero’s & Abbreviations

Misplaced 0’s, decimal points and faulty units are a common cause of medication errors. Unlike with our mobile phones, there’s no Autocorrect when typing up prescriptions. A misplaced decimal point could mean the patient receives ten times the amount/dosage required. This could cause serious illness, or even death. Such an error can be prevented by storing only single strength medications in your pharmacy. On occasion, these mistakes can be found during the counselling procedure.

Similar Drugs…

Beware similar drugs. Whether they sound the same or look the same, you need to be alert to detect the differences. We can get complacent at times. It’s easy to make mistakes and confuse drugs when you’re trying to do another 1,000,001 things at the same time. But you don’t want to dispense methadone instead of methylphenidate! Look at your IT system, it is possible to set up alerts that are activated when you are dealing with high risk drugs that are prone to being confused with others.

Avoid Distraction (Easier Said Than Done)

As stated before, pharmacists are regularly trying to do 1,000,001 things at once. We have patients to deal with, staff to organise, stock to control and there’s also the minor task of dispensing life-saving medicines. Committing your staff to a regular and regimented workflow cycle can help everyone get into a rhythm and reduce dispensing errors. When possible, try to ensure that multi-tasking is kept to a minimum. (I know, this all sounds great in an ideal world…)

Take Your Lunch! (Also, Easier Said Than Done)

I’ve worked many days without taking a lunch break, but you should really try to. I’d rather a patient waited an extra 15 minutes on a prescription than receive an incorrect one. Try to take a quick walk at some point throughout the day. It’s good to escape the building, or those four walls that your stuck within. We need an escape at times, allowing us to come back to the workplace re-energised and refreshed. I went through a phase of eating salmon at lunch time because I heard it was, ‘great brain food.’ If you want to read more about healthy eating as pharmacist - check out our blog about that important topic.

Proper Drug Storage

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. Setting off on the correct footing in the workplace can help to reduce errors. Ensuring that stock is properly marked and stored can help to keep track of resources. It may be helpful to store ‘look-alike’ drugs in one place, encouraging people to take extra caution when working with such medications. The basics are important too, when was the last time you completed a stock expiry check? Is your dispensary clutter free?

Check, Check & Check Again. And Then Check It Again!

Repeat checking and counter-checking is an important strategy, and may be viewed by many to be a luxury enjoyed by larger teams with more resources. We encourage involving two persons in the dispensing process as much as possible. But you already know that, you don’t really need me to tell you it again.

Provide Thorough Counselling

Counselling not only benefits the patient, it also gives us a chance to check what has been prescribed, the dosage and we can live with confidence that we’ve provided the best possible service for our patients. Open the boxes or packaging to show the patient what drugs they will be consuming, and give yourself a chance to ensure that you’re providing the correct medicines.

HELP – I Love A Good Acronym!

How- How much has been dispensed?
Expiry - How long has the medication been prescribed for?
Label - Check that the labels are correct and easy for the patient to understand
Product - Is this correct product being delivered? (Dose and strength)

Blog’s like this can be useful to challenge us, and to help prevent complacency from setting in. If we’ve made just one person think differently about how they approach their work, for the better, then it’s been a success.

Do you have any tips for reducing dispensing errors? We would love to hear your comments.

If by chance you have not registered with us yet, you’re missing out on 5000 locum shifts every month. I’ll make this really easy for you, you can register right here!

If you fancy changing direction with your pharmacist career, you can find out more about the permanent jobs that we're currently recruiting for on our new website!or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com
You'll hear a lot more about his in the coming weeks

5th January 2017 by Locate A Locum

6 Options For Your Pharmacy Career

Pharmacy Career

Unlike other jobs, a pharmacist career doesn’t necessarily involve working 9-5, Monday - Friday. We have so many options within our profession, and our working life can vary daily if we want. A pharmacist is not just someone who hands you pills after a visit to your doctor. Contrary to popular belief, a career in pharmacy can be varied and exciting! Let’s find out how.

Research & Academia

Many pharmacists enjoy careers in some of the world’s finest universities and research facilities. If you were to become a teaching practitioner, you may spend over half your time working in hospitals and community pharmacies, with the remainder of your time based behind the podium, inspiring the next generation. Alternatively, research pharmacists can work on drug design, care provision strategy and treatment methods. Academic and research-based pharmacists can be involved in a variety of roles, in a variety of locations and help shape the future of a pharmacist’s role for generations to come.


When my friends think of a pharmacist, a lot of them assume that we work in hospitals and wear a white coat. Only half of that is somewhat true. Hospital pharmacists are an integral cog in the working of both public and private hospitals. Hospital pharmacists are involved in patient care on the wards, in the manufacturing of medicines and may manage the day-to-day running of the dispensary and its team. You can end up playing a lead role in how a hospital functions. This can be an extremely demanding, yet fulfilling role. Many of my peers from university now work in hospitals and have gone on to become consultants, specialising in specific areas.

Primary Care

Essentially, primary care pharmacists act to keep people out of the hospital. They have a strategic role, working with GPs, nurses and healthcare professionals, to help allocate medicines, treatments and maximise their benefits. As a primary care pharmacist, you may run community clinics to inform local areas about seasonal health trends and medicine usage. The NHS has recently committed a further £100m of funding to place 1,500 pharmacists in GP practices throughout England by 2020/2021, acting as a first port of call for those seeking medical assistance.


Community pharmacists work out of their own pharmacies, a franchise such as Boots or Well, or may work out of a GP surgery/healthcare facility. Community pharmacists are patient facing, will diagnose and recommend treatments and medicines for patients in local areas. There will be a dispensing and counselling capacity to your role. Community pharmacists provide services such as smoking cessation advice, healthy living and sexual health advice. You also have the responsibility, and rewards of running your own business. You’ll need an eye for finance, staffing, resourcing and stock control.


I’ve been lucky to hear the inspirational stories from some previous colleagues in relation to their time working as humanitarian pharmacists, throughout the world. You could be working in the parts of the world that have been greatest affected by famine, natural disaster and disease. The working conditions can be both dangerous and distressing. However, as a humanitarian pharmacist you can help change the world. You can save lives and you can provide hope where none existed. The experience and skills that you develop would make you extremely employable on your return to the UK, and you would have memories and stories that stay with you for your entire life.

Locum Pharmacist Work

Why become a locum pharmacist? You can work your own hours, you can negotiate your own rates and you can travel the country, working in a new city every week! Locum pharmacists love being able to take time off to study. Most locums love the thrill of meeting new teams and patients every week. You can work in a variety of different roles and environments; such an experience can greatly aid your search for a permanent role if/when that time comes. Even if you have a full-time, permanent job, you can locum on the weekends or on your days off.

Historically, finding work was time consuming and somewhat unpredictable. I used to spend 4-6 hours per week trying to find work for the following month. It wasn’t a fun way to live. It was tough to plan my future as I was never sure where my next shift was coming from. It was because of these reasons, I set up Locate a Locum.

When you sign up to Locate a Locum, you’ll receive job alerts of pharmacist shifts in the locations of their choosing. You get access to over 8,000 pharmacies and over 1,000, available, locum shifts per week. Locate a Locum saves you time on your job hunt. Once you register with us, you get access to more work, for less effort.

You can determine what sort of pharmacy career you have. You can mix things up before you settle down. We’re here to help you kick-start your career and we can ensure that you find regular locum shifts. But first, you'll need to pass your interview!

(If you are interested in a permanent pharmacist vacancy, please visit our Careers Site!
Or get in touch with our Recruitment Manager, Thomas, to find out more! thomas@locatealocum.com - we are currently recruiting for a number of roles including Pharmacist Manager and Clinical Pharmacist positions.)

20th December 2016 by Locate A Locum

Not Getting A Post-Grad Pharmacist Job Worked For Me

Not Getting a Post-Grad Pharmacist Job Worked For Me

Many students go through university worrying about the risk of unemployment after they have graduated. I too, one was of these students. However, qualifying in 2012 in the middle of a global recession meant I had to learn quickly to face my fear as there simply were no jobs!

Luckily for me, I had the opportunity for self-employed, locum pharmacist work in community pharmacies. As a locum, I was able to accrue experience of working across a vast network of pharmacies. It also provided me with the opportunity of a flexible income at a time when permanent employment was simply not an option. I certainly didn’t enjoy making the one hour commutes for work.

It was during my time working as a locum that I learnt that the main way of obtaining locum work was by travelling round a number of pharmacies and handing out my business card. This practice was based on the assumption that in the event of cover being needed, the manager would use your card details to contact you for availability. I simply could not believe that this archaic process still existed and why no company had solved this problem of matching pharmacists to employers.

So, I simply thought: Why not solve this problem myself?

Fast forward 4 years and Locate a Locum helps over 1700 pharmacists and pharmacy owners connect with one another for both temporary and permanent work. We work with some of the largest pharmacy chains across Northern Ireland and the UK. By using my own experience of life after graduation, I have been able to help pharmacists carve out their own career paths.

And as I write this article I cannot help but stop to think, would things have worked out differently if I was able to obtain a permanent job straight after graduation? Most certainly-YES!

The aim of this article is not to promote entrepreneurship or being a pharmacist. Or to put students off heading straight into a permanent job if that is your choice. However, what we need to remember is that sometimes life doesn’t work out the way you planned or wanted it to. And that’s OK. We work with what we have and we grow from it, or because of it.

Behind every initial disappointment is a huge opportunity to make use of. Or easier put: As one door closes, another one opens. Make the most of what is in front of you!

You can sign up to Locate a Locum for free, and receive job alerts based on your personal preferences, in areas of your choice. Alternatively, if you're interested in permanent positions, visit our Careers Site and search for jobs across the UK and Republic of Ireland!

20th December 2016 by Locate A Locum

Life As An Entrepreneurial Locum Pharmacist

I Used To Be A Locum Pharmacist...

In July of this year (2016) it will be 4 years since I qualified as a pharmacist. They say time flies when you are having fun and it certainly feels like only last week that I passed the registration exam and had tough choices to make regarding my career direction.

July 2012 was a difficult time for the pharmacy profession. The effect of the global recession meant pharmacist jobs were few and far between. It was also a time when record number of pharmacists were leaving the profession for bigger and better things.

After qualifying I like many other newly qualified pharmacists, joined the workforce as a locum and completed retail community pharmacy work. It suited me greatly as it allowed me to accrue experience of working within a vast network of pharmacies. It also provided me with a flexible income at a time when permanent employment was simply not an option.

It was during my time working as a locum that I learnt that the main way of obtaining locum work was by travelling round a number of pharmacies and handing out your business card. This practice was based on the assumption that in the event of cover being needed, the manager would use your card details to contact you for availability. I simply could not believe that this archaic process still existed and why no company had solved this pain problem of matching pharmacists to employers.

So, I simply thought: Why not set one up?

Fast forward 4 years and Locate a Locum helps over 1200 pharmacists and pharmacy owners connect with one another for both temporary and permanent work.

There is nothing that can prepare you for starting a business. Of course you can read all the business books you want but you will only learn by doing. It’s a bit like being back in university in the Pharmacy Practical classes- where you learn by your mistakes. A mistake is only a mistake if it happens twice.

For me, being an entrepreneurial pharmacist is one of the most rewarding career decisions I have ever made. However, when pharmacists qualify and look at their career options, does entrepreneurship even appear on the list?

Let me take you back to previous times, long before large pharmacy chains dominated the sector and pharmacy regulation was so controlled. After graduating as a pharmacist you typically went on to own and operate your own pharmacy. You were responsible for making your own extemporaneous preparations to attract new customers. You essentially created a new business and would have had some form of financial risk. This is the essential definition of being an entrepreneur.

Fast forward to today and with recent media coverage surrounding pharmacy in the UK, you cannot help but feel a little gloom about the impending cuts on our profession. Could the pharmacy profession benefit from more entrepreneurial minded pharmacists a.ka. pharmapreneurs? Persons whereby creating new entities they also act to disrupt the profession and ultimately bring about positive change.

My opinion is most certainly YES! With recent advances in technology, pharmacists now more than ever have so much opportunities available to them to help shape the future delivery model of healthcare. All it takes is a good idea mixed with a little bit of guts and determination.

So, next time you sit down to decide which direction you would like your career to go. Why not summon your inner entrepreneurial pharmacist spirit and get to work! There are other options too...

Locum Pharmacists and Employers can sign up today!

If you're interested in a permanent pharmacist role, you can search for positions cross the UK and Republic of Ireland on our Careers homepage!

15th December 2016 by Locate A Locum

Pharmacist Job Interview Advice

How To Ace Your Pharmacy Job Interview

A huge welcome to our latest bunch of newly qualified pharmacists across Northern Ireland. After 5 long years of study you have made it! The next part of this roller-coaster ride is to land yourself a permanent job. Years ago this was a given, you graduated from university and more or less walked into employment. Unfortunately, the pharmacy industry has changed big time.

Pharmacy has become a competitive industry. With 200+ students graduating from both QUB and UUC combined each year, it is getting more and more difficult to find a job. Since 2010 I have seen competition for jobs increase dramatically and it is not uncommon for up to 30 pharmacists to apply for one position. Apologies for the negativity here but I just want you to understand the reality of the current market especially within Northern Ireland.

The aim of this article is to give you some interview tips to ensure that you ace your pharmacist job interview.

First things first: preparation is key! Don’t ever just show up at your interview and expect to breeze through it. It will be a much more stressful experience if you haven’t prepared. Here’s my top tips for preparing:

Research the company you are interviewing for, know their mission statement and core values. Even if they don’t ask you a direct question relating to this; try to throw it in somewhere. It should get you major brownie points! The best candidates really go out of their way to access this information and can even visit the pharmacy prior to their interview to ensure they have the most valid information.
Review the job specification. Some employers will have the job spec sitting in front of you in the interview; if this is the case then always try to relate your answers back to it. However, this doesn’t always happen so make sure you have good knowledge of what your role will be prior to the interview. Job specifications are the starting point used by employers to create interview questions so can really help you with interview preparation.
Be prepared to sell yourself. This is something that most of us Northern Irish are not so good at – we’re a pretty modest bunch of people! Write down a huge list of your knowledge, skills and experience that will make you good for the job. Read over this a thousand times and say it out loud prior to the interview. You will be cringing at yourself but it’s the stuff pharmacy employers want to hear! I find Pre-Registration Pharmacists in particular tend to over-emphasise their university education and under sell the skills they have learnt during their training year.
Practise, practise, practise. Write down potential questions you might be asked and answers to go with them. Get your friend, lover or family member to ask you these questions.

This brings me onto the next thing. The questions. Here’s a list of some of the different types of questions you may be asked:

The selling yourself question: we’ve already discussed this in the preparation section. I can’t reiterate enough how important this is.
Examples: “Tell me what makes you the most suitable candidate for this job?”, “What knowledge, skills and experience do you have to make you right for this job?”, “What 3 words best describe yourself?”

Competency based questions: these are the questions to help employers decide who the most desirable candidate is for the job. You may be asked questions about teamwork, responsibility, dealing with conflict, your career motivation, decision making, communication, leadership, trustworthiness, ethics and problem solving. This is when it’s a good time to know the job specification and company’s core values so you can answer the questions appropriately.
Examples: “Tell me about a time you have dealt with conflict.”, “Tell me about a time you implemented a change”, “How would you deal with a customer complaint?”
For competency based questions it is really important for you to describe clearly what YOU contributed to the example and how this had an overall positive effect on the situation.
Clinical scenarios: these are the questions to show off your clinical skills. Take your time and imagine the scenario actually happened to you in your pre-reg year or on a locum shift. Go through exactly what you would do from start to finish. And don’t forget, it’s okay to ask for the question to be repeated just to ensure that you haven’t missed anything!
Examples include: “You have noticed a significant medication interaction on a prescription- what do you do?”, A patient keeps returning to the pharmacy to buy over the counter painkillers – what do you do? “How would you educate a patient newly starting on Warfarin?
Trick questions: Sometimes employers can use trick questions to see how you can handle pressure and also reveal information you may not want to reveal at this early stage.

Examples include: Do you have any salary expectations for the role? Never quote a number as by doing so you can restrict yourself. I recommend stating your primary focus is on determining if you are right for the role. However, outside this know your value and be prepared to ask for it.

Can you name your 3 strengths and weaknesses? Everyone has weaknesses, the best candidates are always able to turn their weakness into a positive. Example being my personal weakness is that I am a perfectionist however this guides me daily as I always strive to be the best.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time? Obviously your answer should depict a higher progression role within the company and not anywhere outside it.

Other top tips:

Dress to impress. While your appearance does not determine how good a pharmacist you are; it is important that you dress smart as this is one of the first things that an employer will notice about you. And don’t forget to smile!
Plan ahead. There’s nothing worse than arriving flustered to an interview. Know where you’re going and leave yourself enough time to get there. Make sure you have everything with you that you need e.g. CV, certificates etc. Your letter/ email of invitation to interview should document everything you require.
Ask questions. Prepare some questions to ask the employers – this will make you seem much more interested in the post. I do not recommend asking questions related to the salary or amount of holiday time available.
Ask for feedback- no matter how the interview went- this ensures you will always be better next time around.

If you need more advice on sourcing locum pharmacy, or permanent pharmacy job, sign up to Locate A Locum for free!

Check out our top tips for finding locum pharmacist work!

If you're interested in permanent pharmacy positions, check out our new Careers Website!

15th December 2016 by Locate A Locum

Motivating Permanent & Locum Pharmacist Staff

Engaging Your Permanent And Locum Pharmacist Staff

This month I am making my main focus, my staff. You will notice from our news feature that Locate a Locum is currently growing its team. As a result of this I have been thinking of ways to motivate and engage staff better.

Your staff are vitally important to the overall running of a business. They interact with customers daily and physically represent your business's connection to its customer base. Happy staff are productive staff; whereas staff with low morale can have disastrous effects on productivity and financial performance.

A common way of attempting to boost staff performance is using financial incentives such as bonuses. However, financial incentives will only work when there are no other major problems within the team.

Empower Them

Do you know what motivates your staff? What I mean by this question is do you know what makes them get up and come to work each morning? If you don't know, ask! And remember, not all staff are incentivised by money.

A recent example of this is when I worked in a shop where a member of staff had lots of sickness and upon investigation we found it was because of boredom. A simple resolution was to give them ownership of the smoking cessation service. From this the absenteeism quickly resolved.

Celebrate Milestones

Do you celebrate your successes? If not, why not? It is important to celebrate all success no matter how small it may be. For example, a team member could source a drug on short supply so the prescription did not get diverted to another pharmacy. The celebration doesn’t need to be expensive or elaborate, turn the radio on and bring in a cake. The employees you recognise will be delighted that their work has been noticed and appreciated.

Create A Learning Environment

Giving feedback to staff can be used as a starting point for discussion in creating a good learning environment. Are you aware of your staff’s knowledge gaps? Are they possibly frustrated because they lack knowledge in a certain area?

A positive learning culture allows any employee to learn in a non-judgemental environment. Always remember that this works both ways, your staff will know things you do not and so you should learn from them too.

Provide A Career Path

Do you know your employees career preferences? Can you provide them with opportunities to progress within their own career? You should know when and how to discuss each employee's career path. Doing so will allow you to create specific actions which support their career goals.

Lead By Example

Probably the most important out of all of these points. You always must lead by example. You can’t expect your employees to be happy and motivated if you do not behave in this way yourself. I always make sure that I present myself in the manner at which I want my staff to feel, happy and motivated.


Motivating and engaging your team can be challenging; but when you do it right it is very rewarding to see what can be accomplished.

Without leading by example; providing a career path; creating a learning environment; celebrating milestones; and empowering your staff you will have a difficult time getting positive results out of your team. Your goal should be motivating them to meet and exceed the objectives you have set for them.

If you're an employer and want to advertise and fill pharmacy shifts in a matter of seconds, please sign up here. Alternatively, if you're a pharmacist manager and want a change of career, find out more about the options available to you in your career.

If you're on the lookout for a new permanent position, check out our Careers platform!

13th December 2016 by Locate A Locum

3 Top Tips For Finding Locum Pharmacy Work

Finding Locum Pharmacy Work

Finding work as a locum pharmacist can be a painful and long-drawn out process. I constantly hear from locums that no work is available. However, the work is there. The key is finding it.

I strongly believe in 3 essential techniques to be successful in finding and securing locum work:

  • Getting your name out there.
  • Being easily contactable.
  • Leaving a good reputation after you have completed the shift

Getting Your Name Out There

Business Cards

The traditional way of finding locum work is by printing off business cards and spending a day visiting pharmacies. Business cards are relatively easy to obtain online and can be purchased for less than £10. However, do not be like the majority of other locums fretting over the colour and design of the card itself. A locum business card should contain your name and contact details. Anything more than this is probably over doing it. A positive of finding locum work this way is that you have the opportunity to create good first impression. However, it’s hard to know that your card will be placed in the drawer containing other business cards of the 1000 locums that called in before you.

Use Your Personal Network

Graduating from university does come with benefits in that now you have many friends who are also pharmacists. Make the most of these connections. Why not set up an informal agreement between you and your other friends. If a person gets asked to cover a shift and isn’t free they should then refer to another locum. This method works well but everyone has to participate and ensure all referrals are reciprocated. Ensure everyone in your referral network is working to the same standard because when you refer, your reputation is still on the line if the locum isn’t any good.

Look Outside Where You Did Your Pre-Reg

As you approach the end of your pre-reg: make your pharmacy aware you are ready, available and looking for work. It’s great to start locuming where you did your pre-reg as you already know staff, customers and also how the company operates. However don’t make this your only option for work. Pharmacists only locuming where they did their pre-reg can be disadvantaged because of limited experience of working elsewhere. Also when your pre-reg pharmacy doesn’t need cover- you are stuck without work. Keep your options open and look outside where you did your pre-reg- it pays off!

Locum Agency

Locums can have a love/hate relationship with agencies. They love having the opportunity to effortlessly find work but hate when agencies take advantage of them. Before you sign up to an agency, do your homework.

Do they put the best interests of you as a locum first? Do they sign you into a contract in that you cannot take locum work elsewhere? Do they provide correct and timely information on locum slots? Will you be paid on time?

Personally I have had bad past experiences with agencies and used this the main reason for founding Locate a Locum, which is an online platform that connects pharmacists with employers without the need for agencies.

Social Media

Are you using social media to find locum work? If not, you are missing out. Facebook and LinkedIn are especially awash with people and pharmacies needing cover.

Treat LinkedIn as your Locum Business card and connect with other pharmacists/pharmacies in your area. Use your profile to detail your experience as a locum and what you are currently looking for. Before long, you will be able to see this method can pay off in a huge way.

Facebook Groups also provide an opportunity not only to find work but also connect with other locums across the country. I myself make use of this in the Facebook Group: Locum Pharmacist UK and Ireland. On a daily basis, cover is needed and other locums are asking for advice.

Being Easy Contactable

Having a mobile phone is essential as a locum. How else do you expect to be contacted on the go? However making the most of this handy little tool also requires some more thought:

Be sure to have a mobile phone operator who has good coverage (mobile reception) in all areas. Ensure good battery (don’t forget to have a portable charger)

Don’t change your number often. Every time you do this you start right back at the beginning of “getting your name out there” Set up a proper voicemail –informing caller who they have reached and what to do and how you will respond.

Have some mobile data (this allows you to check email requests for cover and also respond to social media requests)

Check your phone. Obviously you need to pick a suitable time to do this (whilst speaking to a patient is definitely not a good idea). As a self-employed pharmacist any pharmacy owner should allow you to have a minute to yourself to check if you have received any requests and update your diary. Your livelihood depends on it.

Leave A Good Impression

Are You Well Informed Of What To Expect On The Day?

Leaving a good impression starts before you complete the locum shift. Do you know how to get to the pharmacy and where to park? Does the previous pharmacist have any instructions for you? Do you know what computer system you are using?

If you do not know the answer to any of these questions, I suggest you contact the pharmacy before the shift and find out. Being well informed will help you to be a better locum on the day.

Go The Extra Mile

Locum Pharmacists are in a competitive market and your work will always be evaluated against all other pharmacists. Making this work in my favour I always do more than what is expected. If it is achievable of course. For example, completing your instructions and also making a start on prescriptions for delivery tomorrow.

Leave Instructions/Action Notes For Follow Up

Do as my mother used to say “Treat other people the way you would like to be treated”. For me this means leaving clear instructions or action notes for whoever is the pharmacist working after me. This allows easy follow up of any problems or issues and demonstrates greater thinking outside your booked slot.

If you want to receive daily updates of available locum shifts in the locations of your choosing, sign up to Locate a Locum for free

If you're on the lookout for a permanent pharmacy positions, check out our careers platform!

1st November 2016 by Locate A Locum

Terms & Conditions

The following terms ("Terms"] set out how you can use our website, which is currently available at www.locatealocum.com ("Website"), so please read them carefully. If you have any questions about the terms you can contact us at: info@locatealocum.com.

  1. What do these terms mean?
    These terms ["Terms"] along with our privacy policy form a binding legal agreement between you ("you", "your"] and Locum Match Limited trading as 'Locate a Locum', a company registered in Northern Ireland with company number Nl637219 and registered address at 52 Westway Crescent, Belfast, BT13 3NU ("we", "us”, "our").
    The following words will have the following definitions in these Terms:


A Locum who has submitted an Application

An application submitted by a Locum to provide services in accordance with a Session Notice

Criteria selected by a Locum [such as location and remuneration] in respect of the type of Session Notices they would like to receive

The attendance by the Successful Applicant to provide services in accordance with the Session Notice

The dashboard made available to a Pharmacy or Locum via their User Account

A locum pharmacist who has registered with our Website

Our Services
The provision of our Website

Personal Data
"Personal Data” and "Sensitive Personal Data” as such terms are defined in the Data Protection Act 1998 or any such legislation as may be enacted or adopted by the UK in respect of data protection [in each case, "DPA")

A pharmacy registered with our Website and where the Pharmacy is a company includes all members of the Pharmacy Group.

The profile set up by a Locum using their Dashboard

Services Fee
The fee payable by a Pharmacy to us in accordance with clause 7 below

A shift for which a Pharmacy requires a pharmacist to provide pharmaceutical services

Session Notice
A notice of an available Session

Uploading on to your Dashboard (and "submitted" shall be construed accordingly)

An Applicant selected by a Pharmacy to provide services in accordance

with a Session Notice

References to clauses [unless otherwise provided] are references of the clauses of these Terms. Headings are for ease of reference only and are not intended to be legally binding and/or to restrict the meaning of any clauses. Words in the singular include the plural and in the plural include the singular. A reference to a particular law is a reference to it as it is in force for the time being, taking account of any amendment, extension, application or re-enactment and includes any subordinate legislation for the time being in force made under it. References to "including" and "include (s)" shall be deemed to mean respectively, "including without limit at ion "and "include(s) without limitation".

  1. How do I agree to these terms?
    In order to use our Website, you must first agree to these Terms. You may not use our Website if you do not agree to these Terms. You must agree to these Terms before availing of the services of our website. To indicate agreement please tick the “Agree” button where prompted to do so. By ticking the “Agree” button, where prompted, you will be held to be confirming that you have read and understood the contents of these Terms.
    Sometimes we may need to change these Terms. If we do, we will post the new Terms on our Website, and will notify you directly the first time you log in after the terms have been updated. If you use our Website after we have changed our Terms, you will be deemed to have accepted the changes. You should always check the Terms before using our Website.
    To be eligible to use our Website you must be 18 years of age or older. You must not use our Website if you are younger than this.

  2. What is Locate a Locum?
    We provide our Website to help Pharmacies to find Locums seeking work as a locum pharmacist. We provide a free payroll service for Pharmacies. We cannot, and do not, guarantee or warrant, in any way, that Locums who use our Website will be provided with work in any pharmacy. The Website works as follows:
    Pharmacists can register with the Website and designate Criteria [which sets out the type of Session Notices they want to receive].
    If a Pharmacy has an available Session, they may submit a Session Notice. The Session Notice shall only be sent to Locums whose Criteria match the relevant details in the Session Notice.
    If a Locum wishes to provide the services in accordance with the Session Notice, they may submit an Application. Profiles of the Applicants will be sent to the Pharmacy's Dashboard.

The Pharmacy may then use the Dashboard to select the Successful Applicant, and confirmation will be sent to the Successful Applicant.
While we may take steps to vet Locums, our services are solely to act as a communications platform provider. As such, we do not endorse nor give any guarantees in respect of any Pharmacies or Applicants. YOU SPECIFICALLY ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE THAT YOUR USE OF OUR WEBSITE [AND SERVICES] IS SOLELY AND ENTIRELY AT YOUR OWN RISK.

  1. How do I use Locate a Locum?
    You may only access our Website using your Dashboard; and
    If you are a Pharmacy: your Dashboard may only be used to submit Session Notices solely for the purpose of finding a Locum willing to provide the services requested, to select the Successful Applicant; and if you are a Locum: you may only use your Dashboard to update your Profile, to receive Session Notices and to apply to provide the services requested.
    In exchange for you agreeing to fully comply with and be bound by these Terms [and, if you are a Pharmacy, subject to payment of the Services Fee], we hereby grant you a non-exclusive, non-assignable, non-transferable, non-sub-licensable license to use our Website for the purposes set out in clause 3 above, and in accordance with these Terms.
    There are some things which you are not entitled to do on our Website. You agree:

not to access [or attempt to access] any part of our Website:

by any means other than through the interface provided by us;

through any automated means, including use of scripts, robots, spiders, scrapers or web crawlers; and

unless you have registered in accordance with clause 5 below; and

that you will not (a) take any action that imposes, or may impose [in each case in our sole discretion] an unreasonable or disproportionately large load on our infrastructure; (b) [save to the extent permitted by governing law] copy, duplicate, reproduce, rent, lease, loan, sell, trade, resell, modify, create derivative works, distribute or publicly display any part of our Website without prior written consent from us; [c] interfere or attempt to interfere with the proper working of our Website or any activities conducted via our Website; (d) bypass any measures we may use to prevent or restrict access to our Website; and [e] attempt to reverse engineer, decompile or otherwise seek to obtain access to any source code in our Website; and that you will not engage in any activity that interferes with or disrupts our Website or the servers and networks that are connected to our Website.

The Website functions so that Locums are provided with Session Notices which match the Criteria they have selected.
If you are a Locum and you receive any Session Notices, you acknowledge and agree that any such information is being provided to you on a confidential basis and that you are only entitled to use the information to assess whether or not you would like to provide the services requested, and, if you are the Successful Applicant, in order to provide the services in question. Unless required to do so at law you are not entitled to. And you agree that you shall not use the information for any purposes other than as set out in this clause 3. In particular, you agree not to disclose any such information to any other pharmacists, pharmacies or any other businesses, which could reasonably be deemed to compete with our business.
If you are a Pharmacy and you receive details about Applicants in respect of any Session Notice, you acknowledge and agree that any such information is being provided to you on a confidential basis and that you are only entitled to use the information to assess whether or not you would like to select an Applicant to provide services for the relevant Session, and, if the Applicant is selected, in order to facilitate the Booking. Unless required to do so at law, you are not entitled to, and you agree that you shall not use the information for any purposes other than as set out in this clause. In particular, you agree not to disclose any details of the Applicant to any other pharmacies [whether or not affiliated with you) or any other businesses which could reasonably be deemed to compete with our business and you agree not to contact the Applicant for any purposes other than in connection with the relevant Session.

  1. How do I set up my user account and profile?
    If you want to use our Website you must set up a User Account [and Profile, for Locums). To do this you will be required to provide us with certain information, which may include details of your identity, availability, qualifications and references. Any information which you provide us with in when you set up your User Account and/or Profile and any updates or other details you provide us with from time to time, altogether any such details, "User Details”.
    By providing us with any User Details, you are representing and warranting that:

the User Details are complete, up to date and accurate;

you are not using a false name or impersonating anyone else;

you have the required authority and obtained all consents necessary to provide us with the Registration Details for use in accordance with our Terms;

if you are registering on behalf of a Pharmacy, you are also representing and warranting that:

the Pharmacy is fully licensed and registered to lawfully provide pharmaceutical services; and

you are authorised to use the Website on behalf of the Pharmacy;

if you are registering as a Locum, you are also representing and warranting that:

you are fully qualified to work as a pharmacist in the country or countries designated in your registration;

you have obtained all necessary qualifications and membership of all and any necessary statutory or professional bodies;
you have indemnity insurance in place;
you have never been disqualified from acting as a pharmacist in any country; received any criminal convictions; and
you are not aware of any reason or reasons why you might not be suitable to act as a locum pharmacist.

You agree:

to notify us immediately if any of your User Details change or if the representations and warranties referred to in clause 5 above cease to be correct; and

that you are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any passwords associated with your User Account. Accordingly, you agree that you are solely responsible to us for all activities that occur under your User Account, as determined, noted, or recorded by us. Such determination, notation and record shall be at our sole discretion, and shall serve as conclusive proof of the facts stated therein to which they attest.

You grant us the right to access your User Account for the purposes of provided our Services, monitoring, improvement or upgrade.
If you become aware of any unauthorised use of your password or your User Account, you agree to notify us immediately at: info@locatealocum.com.
If you are a Locum with a Profile, you may update most of the details in your Profile from time to time. However, there are some details which you will not be entitled to edit. For example, if you cancel an Application once you have been selected as the Successful Applicant or if you don't show up to a Session you have agreed to attend, this may show up on your Profile for any Pharmacies (to which you have applied] to see.

  1. Session Notices (Pharmacies)
    By submitting a Session Notice, you are warranting and representing that:

    all details in the Session Notice are accurate, complete and up to date;
    you have all consents and authorisations required at law to submit the Session Notice and to enter into an agreement for services or other agreement with the successful Applicant; and
    by submitting the Session Notice and/or booking an Applicant, you will not be in breach of any applicable legislation and/or any contractual terms.

You will only receive details of Applicants if the details in your Session Notice match any Criteria selected by Locums and if any of those Locums respond to the Session Notice. We cannot and do not guarantee that this will be the case and we accept no liability whatsoever if you do not receive any details of any Applicants for a particular Session Notice.
Our Services are to act as a communications platform. While we take steps to confirm the identity of Locums and their qualifications, you acknowledge and agree that it is your responsibility to carry out all checks which you feel are required before agreeing to receive services from a Locum. We do not provide any guarantees relating to the Locum supplied nor do we supervise the services provided by any Locum. To the fullest extent permitted by law, we exclude any liability for the acts and/or omissions of any Locum in connection with any Booking, including relating to any cancellation by, non-attendance of the Locum [save as expressly provided in these Terms] . You acknowledge and agree that it is your responsibility to put in place such insurance as you may reasonably believe is necessary to protect you and/or any third parties from suffering any losses and/or damages in connection with the Booking.
The nature of the contractual relationship between you and the Locum is a matter to be determined solely by you and the Locum. You agree, however, that you shall be solely liable to pay the Locum in accordance with any terms agreed with the Locum and to make any other payments due at law in connection with the Booking. No liability for payment to the Locum shall attach to us by reason of anything set out in these Terms.
In respect of the Booking, you agree:

not to ask the Locum to provide any services which differ materially from the details included in the Session Notice;

to comply with all applicable employment, health and safety and any other applicable legislation in respect of the Locum and their engagement by you;

to treat the Locum with respect and provide safe working conditions for the Locum and not to act in any manner [ or authorise or allow any person connected with your pharmacy to act in any manner] which could reasonably be perceived to be threatening, bullying, harassing or intimidating; and

that any disputes which may arise in respect of the performance [or non-­ performance] of any services by an Applicant are solely between you and the Applicant and to the fullest extent permitted by law we accept no liability whatsoever in such circumstances.

You acknowledge and agree that any Applicant details which may be sent to your Dashboard are only for the purposes of filling a particular Session. As such, you agree not to contact any Locum directly once the Session has been completed, for the purposes of offering that Locum any further work.

  1. Is there a fee to use Locate a Locum?
    There is no fee for Locums to use our Website.

Pharmacies shall pay us a Services Fee for use of our Website, in accordance with the following terms:

the Services Fee shall be payable upon completion of a Session attended by an Applicant and shall be due at the end of the month in which the Booking was completed;

we shall be entitled to charge interest at the rate of 8% above the lending rate of the Bank of Ireland from time to time if the Services Fee is not paid by the due date;

payment of the Services Fee shall not be conditional upon the acts and/or omissions of the Locum in question, including the level or quality of services provided by the Locum.

  1. Cancellations
    Pharmacies may cancel a Session Notice at any point until any Applicant's details have been sent to the Pharmacy's Dashboard. The Pharmacy acknowledges and agrees that the Services Fee shall be payable in respect of any cancellation by it of a Session Notice following such details having been sent.
    If an Applicant selected by a Pharmacy is prevented from attending a Booking as a result of the acts and/or omissions of the Pharmacy [including incorrect details provided in a Session Notice or any subsequent correspondence with the Applicant], this shall be deemed to be a cancellation and the Services Fee shall become payable when the Session (as scheduled] was due to be completed.
    An Applicant may withdraw its Application at any time prior to receiving confirmation of a booking.
    If an Applicant is unable to attend a Session which has been booked, it must notify the Pharmacy immediately. Cancellations outside a 28 day timeframe are subject to a cancellation review and the locum may incur a £25 cancellation fee. If the applicant does not notify the pharmacy, the cancellation fee could be increased to £50 per session. The Applicant also acknowledges and agrees that any such cancellation or any failure to complete a confirmed Booking may be recorded on the Applicant's Profile and displayed to any Pharmacies to which it makes an application to provide services.

  2. What does it mean if I respond to a session notice?
    By applying to provide services in accordance with a Session Notice, you are warranting and representing that:

you have all of the qualifications, certifications and experience required as set out in the Session Notice;

you are available, able and willing to provide the services in accordance with the Session Notice; and

you are not aware of any reasons why you would be unable to fill or prevented [whether at law or otherwise from filling] the Booking in accordance with the Session Notice; and

you are consenting to us sending your Profile to the Pharmacy which submitted the Session Notice; and

you are agreeing to fulfil the Booking in accordance with the Session Notice.

We act as a communications platform. As such, you acknowledge and agree that [to the fullest extent permitted by law]:

we do not endorse any Pharmacies, nor do we provide any guarantees relating to any Session. Any Application submitted by you is entirely at your sole risk;

any contract of services or other agreement is between you and the Pharmacy in question, we accept no liability whatsoever for the acts and/or omissions of the Pharmacy nor for any breach of any agreement between you the Pharmacy; and

any disputes which may arising in respect of the services to be provided to a Pharmacy pursuant to a Session Notice are between you and the Pharmacy and to the fullest amount permitted at law, we accept no liability whatsoever.

In relation to the Booking, you agree:

to act at all times in a professional manner;

not to act in any way which could reasonably be considered to be intimidating, threatening, harassing or bullying; and

to comply with all reasonable instructions of the Pharmacy.

  1. Personal Data
    In order to use our Website, you may be required to disclose to us Personal Data. If you do so disclose such Personal Data to us:

and that Personal Data relates to someone else, you warrant and represent to us that you have secured all consents and permissions, and have taken all actions necessary, as may be required by applicable law for the purposes of storage by us of any such data relating to third parties in the provision of our Website and use of the Personal Data in accordance with these Terms and our privacy policy; and

and that Personal Data relates to you, you consent to the use of such Personal Data in accordance with these Terms and our privacy policy.

You agree to comply with all relevant data protection legislation [including the DPA] in respect of any Personal Data which we may transfer to you from time to time (any such data, "Locum Data"], including by:

only using the Locum Data for the purposes of the Booking (and such other legal purposes as are strictly required by your business in order to comply with any applicable legislation] and for no other purposes whatsoever;

implementing adequate security measures to protect the Locum Data from unauthorised access;

complying with any data requests whether received by you or by us in respect of an individual whose data we have transferred to you; and

notifying us immediately in the event of a data breach or any data related requests received by you in respect of any Locum Data held by you.

  1. Intellectual Property
    You acknowledge that we own or licence all legal rights, title and interest in and to our Website and our Services, including any intellectual property rights which subsist therein (whether those rights happen to be registered or not, and wherever in the world those right may exist) and that all intellectual property rights in the Services [including source code in our website) belong to and shall remain vested in us [or where relevant our licensors). Nothing in these Terms shall confer on you any right, title or interest in any intellectual property rights (except the rights of use set out in these Terms).
    You agree not to use any of the trademarks, trade names, service marks, copyrights, logos, domain names, and/or other distinctive brand features belonging to us or any third party unless you have valid written permission to do so. You agree not to alter, remove or obscure any proprietary notices (including copyright and trademark notices] which may appear in or be held within our Website.
    In the event that your use of our Website, if used in accordance with these Terms, infringes any intellectual property rights of a third part y, we may, at our sole discretion and expense, replace or modify our Website so that it is no longer infringing or obtain for you the right to continue using our Website. This therefore constitutes your sole remedy in relation to any such infringement.

  2. How can this agreement be terminated?
    We may at any time disable your User Account [and Dashboard], and/or terminate this Agreement, at our sole discretion, and with you with no liability to you, if:

you materially breach, or we have grounds to suspect that you have materially breached any provision of these Terms (or act in a manner which we believe shows that you do not intend to, or are unable to comply with these Terms];

we are required to do so by law;

you become bankrupt or insolvent, or unable to pay your debts within the meaning of the insolvency legislation applicable to you; or a person [including the holder of a charge or other security interest] is appointed to manage or take control of the whole part of your business or assets, or notice of an intention to appoint such a person is given or documents relating to such appointment are filed with any court; or the ability of your creditors to take any action to enforce your debts is suspended, restricted or prevented or some or all of your creditors accept, by agreement or pursuant to a court or der, an amount of less than the sums owing to them in satisfaction of those sums; or any process is instituted which could lead to your assets being distributed to your creditors, shareholder or other contributors; or

the provision of our Website to you or to others, is, in our sole opinion, no longer commercially viable.

Provided that there are no Bookings linked to your User Account, which have been agreed to but have not been completed, you may terminate this Agreement by disabling your User Account at any time.

we reserve the exclusive right and prerogative to retain, maintain, archive, protect, use or store any personal data or such information as we may receive from you, without regards as to time or duration, as is strictly necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes and enforce agreements.

On termination of this Agreement, the following clauses shall apply:

the licence granted under this Agreement shall immediately terminate;

you shall immediately pay any outstanding sums due in connection with your use of our Website;

all of the legal rights, obligations and liabilities that you and we have benefited from, been subject to (or which have accrued over time whilst the Agreement has been in force] or which are expressed to continue indefinitely, shall be unaffected by this cessation, and in particular the provisions of clauses 3, 6, 7, 10 and 11 - 15 (inclusive) shall survive termination of this Agreement; and

  1. Limitation of liability and indemnity
    Nothing in these Terms, including this clause 13 shall exclude or limit any warranty or liability to the extent that the same may not be lawfully excluded or limited by applicable law, including liability for fraud or for death or personal injury caused by its negligence.
    In respect of your use of our Website and/or our Services, there are no conditions, warranties, representations or other terms, express or implied, that are binding on us except as specifically stated in these Terms [including implied warranties and conditions of or merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and non-infringement] and no advice or information, whether oral or written, obtained by you from us or any of our subsidiaries, affiliates, officials, employees or personnel, or through or from your use of our Website and/or Services shall create any warranty not expressly stated in these Terms.
    Any condition, warranty, representation or other terms concerning our Website or Services, which might otherwise be implied into or incorporated in these Terms, or whether by statute, common law or otherwise, is hereby excluded to the fullest extent permitted by law.
    While we will use every effort to ensure that our Website is available to you, you expressly understand that some of the functions of our Website rely on an internet connection being sustained and the appropriate equipment being maintained. As such, you expressly understand and so agree that your use of our Website is 'as is' and 'as available'. In particular, we do not represent or warrant to you that:

your use of our Website (including such use in conjunction with any other software] will meet your requirements, or that your use of our Website will be uninterrupted,

timely, secure or free from error defects in the operation or functionality of our Website;

that defects in the operation or functionality of our Website will be corrected, rectified or remedied; and/or

any information obtained by you as a result of your use of our Website will be accurate or reliable.

Any material downloaded or otherwise obtained from or accessed through your use of our Webs it e is done so at your own discretion and risk, and you will be solely responsible for any damage, loss or prejudice to your computer system or other device or loss of data that result from the download or access of any such material.
You expressly understand and agree that we and our licensors shall not be liable to you for:

any direct, indirect, special. incidental or consequential loss or damage which may arise in respect of your use of our Website and/or its non-availability;

loss of profit business revenue, goodwill and anticipated savings;

any trading or other losses which you may incur as a result of or reliance upon any content on our Website;

the deletion of. corruption of, or failure to store any content and other data maintained or transmitted by or through your use of our Website; or

any effect which the use of our Website may have on any software you use.

Subject to the terms set out above, our aggregate liability to you in respect of any loss or damage suffered by you and arising out of or in connection with the use of our Website by you shall not exceed the sum of £10 if you are a Locum [or any third party], and shall not exceed the aggregate Introducer Fee paid by you to us in the 12 months immediately preceding the date of the claim, if you are a Pharmacy.
You agree and acknowledge that you are in a better position than us to foresee and evaluate any potential damage or loss which you may suffer in connection with your use of our Website; that we cannot adequately insure its potential liability to you; and that accordingly, the exclusions and limitations contained in this clause 13 are reasonable. You also undertake at all times to mitigate any such damage or loss.
You agree to indemnify us against all liabilities, costs, expenses, damages and losses [including any direct indirect or consequential losses, loss of profit loss of reputation and all interest, penalties and legal costs (calculated on a full indemnity basis) and all other reasonable professional costs and expenses suffered or incurred by us, arising out of any breach of this Agreement by you.

  1. Status
    Nothing in these Terms shall create or be deemed to create a partnership or the relationship of employer and employee between you and us. Nothing in these Terms shall create any mutuality of obligation between you and us. As set out previously herein, we cannot, and do not, guarantee or warrant that by availing of the services provided by our Website you will be provided with work in a pharmacy, or any work.
    It is matter of agreement between the Pharmacy and the Locum as to the nature of the legal relationship between them and who is responsible for the payment of taxes or other statutory contributions that may arise as a result of that relationship. The Pharmacy and the Locum agree to indemnify us on demand for any losses, expenses and/or costs incurred by us as a result of a failure of either the Pharmacy or the Locum to make payment of sums due to be paid pursuant to the agreement for services or other agreement entered into between them including any payments to be made pursuant to clause 6.

  2. General
    You shall not assign, transfer or sub-license any of your rights or obligations under these Terms, other than to members of the same group of companies and other than as expressly provided for in these Terms. We may at any time assign all or any of our rights and transfer all or any of our obligations under these Term s.
    Failure or neglect by us to enforce any of the provisions of these Terms at any time shall not be construed or deemed to be a waiver of our rights, nor shall this in any way affect the validity of the whole or any part of these Terms, nor prejudice our rights to take subsequent action.
    We shall not be liable to you in the event that we are unable to perform any of our obligations under these Terms owing to circumstances beyond our reasonable control, including acts of god, governmental actions, an outbreak of hostilities [whether war is declared or not], or in the event of a national emergency or terrorist intervention.
    If any part of any provisions of these Terms shall be or become invalid, unlawful or unenforceable to any extent, then the remainder of such provisions and all other provisions of these Terms shall continue to be valid and enforceable to the fullest extent permitted by law.
    These Terms represent the entire agreement between you and us in relation to the subject matter of these Terms and neither of you nor us has relied upon any statement or representation made by the other in agreeing to enter this Agreement .

  1. Locate a Locum provides a permanent recruitment service that is free of charge to all locums, technicians or any other potential employee, henceforth referred to as candidates, who are offered positions by Locate a Locum on behalf of a pharmacy.

    Locate a Locum charges a fee of 15% of the Candidate’s gross annual salary for placement of pharmacists and all other pharmacy staff.

If a candidate's employment ceases the client may request the position to be filled again at no charge or a refund of agency fee as agreed in the Pharmacy Permanent Recruitment Terms. 

 If a client engages a locum who was initially introduced to the client by Locate a Locum (introduction, locum placement or any other placement type); the applicable fees are due to Locate a Locum from the date of introduction up to twelve months after the date of introduction.
  1. Law and Jurisdiction
    These Terms shall be construed in accordance with Northern Irish law and the parties hereby submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Northern Irish courts to settle any disputes which may arise in connection with these Terms.

Hi there, we are Locate a Locum, thanks for stopping by! We enjoy working hard to create a thriving business, using amazing software and providing excellent support services to help Locums and employers find work and fill their shifts faster.

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