Pharmacy Career Options

Here are 6 options for your pharmacy career to consider when qualified.

Stevie McIntyre avatar
Written by Stevie McIntyre
Updated over a week ago

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!

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.


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.

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 maximize their benefits. As a primary care pharmacist, you may run community clinics to inform local areas about seasonal health trends and medicine usage.


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 counseling capacity to your role. Community pharmacists provide services such as smoking cessation advice, healthy living, and sexual health advice.


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! 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.

For more information on becoming a locum pharmacist or working full time, send us an email to and a member of our team will get back in touch!

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