3 hot jobs in Pharma: May 2017 Part 2

Every month, our vacancy page is packed with exciting jobs up for grabs from some of the biggest names in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

As always, we’re sharing three highlights to give you a taste of the hottest opportunities available right now.

Brand Lead (Respiratory)

A world class Pharmaceutical Organisation has an exciting role for a Brand Lead to work on a highly successful Respiratory brand. You will support the development of brand strategy and lead the implementation of tactics through the Account teams. You must have proven Marketing experience and success, as well as excellent analytical and project management skills. A Highly Competitive Basic Salary and Excellent Flexible Benefits package and Bonus will be paid.

Location: Home counties

Apply Now


Key Account Manager (Diabetes)

A world class Pharmaceutical Organisation has an exciting role for a Diabetes Key Account Manager working within their industry leading team. You will work as part of a cross-functional team, selling to Key Customers in Primary Care, the Payer community and clinical prescribers in Hospitals. You must be able to demonstrate a successful track-record of selling within the NHS Hospital environment in the UK. Our client offers an award winning people development environment, where your ambitions and aspirations can be truly realised. Excellent Salary, bonus, substantial flexible lifestyle benefits package.

Location: Cheshire / Mersey

Apply Now


Hospital Key Account Manager (Haematology)

Our Client is a leading Biotechnology Company with a product that combats a rare, disabling, and life-threatening blood disorder. Currently looking for a Regional Account Manager with experience in High-Cost medication and funding streams. The ideal candidate will have at least 5 years’ experience of hospital sales, preferably in niche markets/orphan drugs and previous experience in key account management. Excellent Salary and full package will be offered.

Location: London & East of England

Apply Now

Body Language for Interviews

Smart job seekers not only know how to prepare and what to say in an interview setting, but they also know how to manage their non-verbal communication, aka their body language.

So, you might be schooled up and aware of how your body language looks, or this could be a new subject for you. Either way, this blog will cover the key points you need to know to ensure you use the optimal body language to give yourself the best chance of success.

First impressions

You should be trying to create an air of confidence and calm, but not arrogance, so before you leave for your job interview give yourself plenty of time and make sure you’ve got everything you’re going to possibly need; copy of CV and cover letter, job description, note pad, pens etc.

Put them in a professional looking satchel, briefcase or bag so that you’re not scrambling things together in your car prior to walking into the building. And by the way, always assume that there will be people watching you as soon as you park your car!

The other thing to be aware of is that hiring managers often ask the people you’ve had brief engagements with what they thought about you. So for example if you speak to somebody on the front reception desk make sure you treat them like the final decision maker by being friendly and polite. They’ll also be judging your non-visual communication too so when you’re waiting in reception sit or stand in an alert and professional manner; no slouching, stay off your mobile phone (including texting or internet browsing) and take your surroundings in. This will help you get a feel for the company atmosphere and culture as well as keep you alert for anyone walking past, which when this does happen remember to look for eye contact and smile.

Shaking hands

Job interviews start when you shake hands, so you need to be aware of your handshake style and make sure yours is one that gives the right impression.

Grip too tightly and people will think you’re too aggressive. On the other hand (no pun intended) grip too softly and you’ll come across as too weak.

You also need to make sure you don’t open or close your palm as you offer it to people as this is a sign of either submission (open palm facing up) or control (palm facing down).\

With so much to think about why not practice with a couple of friends or family members to get their opinion on how you can alter your hand shake.

You should be focussed on using your right hand (so make sure your belongings are on your left hand side), smiling, keeping your palm at a 90 degree angle to the ground and use eye contact once you’ve made the moderate to firm grip.

Finally never cover the other person’s hand or touch them anywhere else when you meet them for the first time. This type of handshake is saved for closer relationships or else it is seen as a sign of trying to dominate the other person.

Walking through

The walk to the interview is a great opportunity for you to display some early body language and show you’re ‘the right person for this company’!

To keep things simple keep calm, smile (but not too much), take in your surroundings and try to mirror the person you’re walking with.

The message you’ll give is ‘I fit in here and will follow your lead’.

Talk about pressure!

Taking a seat at the interview table

The first thing you need to do when you sit down is either wait for the other person / people to sit or be offered to take a seat.

From here you need to get comfortable; fold up your coat nicely (if you have one) get a copy of your CV, cover letter, note pad and any other documentation you’re going to need neatly laid out on the table (I would advise you do this in one neat pile with your CV at the top and your note pad to the side) and set yourself up early with a drink of water (if there’s some available).

Place your briefcase carefully to the side of your chair too, you don’t want it under the table for people to kick!

Once you’re ready sit up straight, take a deep breath and smile; you’re ready to go!

Eye contact and hand gesturing

Eye contact is critical as you should always keep appropriate eye contact with the person or people in the room. Too little eye contact means you’ll look ‘shifty’, too much and you’ll come across as being too intense.

This means you need to look people in the eye in a natural way when they’re talking to you and vice versa. It’s also important to ensure you make eye contact with everyone in the room, so you’re not just talking to one person.

Experts recommend you should look directly into someone’s eyes for no more than a few seconds at a time, so as a rule of thumb, keeping eye contact for 3-5 seconds at a time is a good guide. Try talking through some interview questions and answers with your friends and family to see what they think about your use of eye contact.

The other thing you should think about is using your hands to help gesture and get your points across.

To do this in the interview setting you’ll need to make sure your hands are always above desk level, but below your shoulder height otherwise you won’t look relaxed.
Keep your palms open to show honesty and a relaxed manner. It also might help to sit back a little from the table to help you use your hands to gesture during the interview.

Other Interview Body Language Dos and Don’t

As you will have worked out by now, body language can be quite a complex subject. However to keep things as simple as possible here are list of body language dos and don’ts for you to consider prior to having your interview;

Do…

  • Sit all the way back in your seat
  • Plant your feet firmly on the ground
  • Breathe deeply, and speak on the exhale
  • Nod your head while listening
  • Maintain equal eye contact with all interviewers
  • Lean in at key points of interest

Don’t…

  • Slouch in your chair (either in the interview or while you’re waiting)
  • Cover your mouth when you talk
  • Move about in your chair (it makes you look like you’re nervous)
  • Try to over analyse the other person’s body language – it’ll put you off your stride!

Making your exit

Once the questions are over and it’s time to leave you just need to do a little reverse engineering and you can be on your way. So, take a breath, gather your things calmly, stand up with grace, make eye contact and smile.

Then shake hands with all the people in the room and make your way out of the room, remembering to smile and say goodbye to anyone you spoke to on your way out.
That’s it, you’re done… for now…. hopefully!

If you’re interested in looking at your career options and would like to speak to a member of the team simply call 0131 553 6644 or email connect@chasepeople.com

Kate O’Neill
Consultant – Graduate Sales Recruitment

3 hot jobs in Pharma: May Part 1

Every month, our vacancy page is packed with exciting jobs up for grabs from some of the biggest names in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

As always, we’re sharing three highlights to give you a taste of the hottest opportunities available right now.

Brand Manager (Specialist Medicine)

Our client is a global healthcare company with a broad portfolio of products which includes pharmaceutical specialised medicines, diagnostic systems and tests, vascular devices, blood glucose monitoring systems, nutritional products and veterinary care. If you have a good track record in Pharmaceutical or Healthcare Marketing and are looking for a new challenge we’d be delighted to tell you more. This role will pay a Highly Competitive Basic, Bonus and Benefits package.

Location: Hertfordshire

Apply Now


Customer Account Specialist (Diabetes)

Our client is a wholly owned subsidiary of Japan’s largest pharmaceutical company – a global industry leader with more than 30,000 employees in 70 countries. They now seek a talented individual to assist in the delivery of a local business plan through close interaction with key customers groups in primary care. This is a highly autonomous role that will suit a candidate with an entrepreneurial approach and exceptional commercial acumen, probably frustrated by the limitations of their current role. Excellent Basic + healthcare + pension + 20% bonus and car allowance.

Location: East & West Yorkshire

Apply Now


Regional Account Manager (Rare Diseases)

Our Client is a leading Biotechnology Company with a product that combats a rare, disabling, and life-threatening blood disorder. Currently looking for a Regional Account Manager with experience in High Cost medication and funding streams. The ideal candidate will have at least 5 years’ experience of hospital sales, preferably in niche markets/orphan drugs and previous experience in key account management. Excellent Salary and full package will be offered.

Location: Scotland & North East

Apply Now

3 hot jobs in Healthcare: May Part 1

Every month, our vacancy page is packed with exciting jobs up for grabs from some of the biggest names in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

As always, we’re sharing three highlights to give you a taste of the hottest opportunities available right now.

Territory Sales Manager (Spine / Orthopaedics)

A leading Medical Devices Company are currently looking for a Territory Manager to add value to their team by researching, developing and implementing a territory-specific business plan. This role will involve independently leading in theatres in all surgical procedures. You can expect an excellent financial and benefits package and have the chance to represent a major player at an import time.

Location: Southampton / Swindon / Salisbury

Apply Now


Territory Manager (Laparoscopic Devices)

Our client is a major player in the single-use theatre device market, across the UK and Europe and the United States. At this important time for the organisation, they are looking for an highly motivated and talented territory manager to join their high performing UK sales team to work covering the North West London territory. The ideal candidate will have medical device (operating theatre) experience and a proven track record of sales success. You can expect a very attractive financial and benefits package and the chance to represent a genuine market leader in it’s field with major growth plans for the next few years.

Location: Kent

Apply Now


 Marketing Manager (Ostomy Care)

This role as a Marketing Manager will be working with their successful chronic are portfolio and have responsibility for the UK marketplace. This role will have a high level of autonomy to deliver commercial success for the business and to shape and grow the market and portfolio in the coming years. The plan is for this individual to progress within the organisation, so you will need to be a highly successful marketing professional with career aspirations for future development. An excellent basic salary, bonus and benefits will be paid.

Location: Home Counties HO based

Apply Now

Getting Through Assessment Centres Successfully: Part 2

In last week’s blog we looked at assessment centres and discussed that whilst most companies have their own variations on how they like to run these, there are generally four core components that you will have to go through;

  • A case study
  • A group exercise
  • A role playing / selling exercise (for sales based roles)
  • Psychometric testing

We explored the case study component in significant detail last time, as this is usually the most time consuming part of the assessment. So this week we’ll cover the remaining three components.
Enjoy!

Group exercises

If your assessment centre involves a group exercise then you’ll be placed into a group with some or all of the other candidates (and in some instances actors) who you’re in competition with, and be asked to undertake a task whilst being assessed for the skills associated with the job.

This will feel like a really un-natural thing to be asked to do, as it puts you eye to eye with the very people you’re competing against. As a result you’ll be put under a very different set of pressures to working alone, however this is precisely why this type of activity is used, as it provides the assessor with a more holistic view of your capabilities and personality traits.

The key is to remain optimistic, open minded, logical and most of all calm. If someone’s trying to dominate the group, you’re going to need to find a way to assert yourself without causing an argument!

In my experience, candidates that I’ve worked with have been exposed to a range of different group exercises such as;

  • Discussing a business issue then finding and presenting back a proposed solution
  • Working through a written case study together (possibly linked to your individual case study)
  • I’ve also known people to discuss a more current affairs or industry specific topic such as what people think the future strategy should be regarding the NHS.

If you’d like to read more about the different types of group exercises that are used in assessment centres then simply Google search ‘assessment centre group exercises examples’ and you’ll find a wealth of unlimited examples you can review.

Role Playing / Selling Exercises

Role playing exercises in Pharma assessment centres usually follow a similar format where the participants are given a fictitious scenario, some detailed ‘inside information’ and some outcomes that are needed to be achieved.

You’ll be given time to prepare for the role play, so just like with the case study, use this time to really think about the key issues in the briefing pack and what you need to do to overcome them. You should also use the time to get into character as the assessors will want to be able to picture how you communicate in real-life. Some hiring managers believe your ability to act is a reflection on your ability to sell!

The context of the role play could be anything from a Key Opinion Leader refusing to endorse your product through to an influential GP with a poor understanding about your drug which is leading to it being excluded from local guidelines. It might also be set outside of the Pharma industry, as the core skills they’re looking for should ideally be transferrable across industries, so be prepared for anything.

If you’re applying for a Sales Manager job you may have to meet with a difficult or poor performing member of your team to uncover what the issues are and create a plan to manage their performance. You’ll be expected to remain emotion free, objective and open minded. By the end you’ll need to have a clear path laid down as to what you see as the issues, what you expect as an outcome and what the consequences will be if things don’t turn around.

Role Playing

Some people struggle to get into character for role playing exercises, however it’s important to remember that this is a critical part of convincing the assessors you can do the job, so remember that you’re only going to get credit for what you say and how you act. Here are some top tips I always give my candidates;

  • Create a plan based on the brief. Write down your pre (and then post) discussion objectives
  • Draw up a list of questions you want to ask. Make sure you use open questions to expand on the conversation (who, what, where, why, how)
  • Use active listening by paraphrasing the responses you get to confirm you have understood the person you’re speaking to. Pick up on and mirror their terminology
  • Use your ears and mouth in proportion (i.e. listen twice as much as you speak)
  • Once the conversation is underway you’re going to have to be flexible and think on your feet a little, so don’t get flustered if the discussion goes off track. Just revert to your pre-call objectives and questions to keep you on track for a good outcome
  • Read up on body language (next week’s blog) to help reinforce everything you say.

Psychometric testing

The ‘psychometric test’ is assessing your ability and methodology of using your brain, so don’t be fooled into thinking this is the easy part of the assessment or that there are no right and wrong answers.

There are a number of different tests or components of tests that employers use;

  • Verbal reasoning: one of, if not the most important test in sales based roles (for obvious reasons)
  • Numerical reasoning: also commonly used in the commercial world
  • Logical reasoning: especially important if you’re going for a managers role (either now or in the future)
  • Personality tests: which is about investigating your working preferences and character traits

To prepare to succeed you should search the internet for ‘online psychometrics tests’ where you will find a wealth of resources that you can utilise and get a feel for how they work to give yourself the best chance of success. Take a few tests and sense check your answers to work out where and how you can maximise your score. And as always, keep calm and carry on to the end of the test.

One important tip is do not worry if you don’t finish the Verbal or Numerical Reasoning tests. It is very common for people to run out of time. Don’t rush through it – make sure that what you do complete is to the very best of your ability.

Right, you’re done! If you’ve put the thought and preparation into your assessment centre in line with the advice we’ve given in the last two blogs, then you’ve done everything within your grasp to convince the employer to hire you.

You’re probably feeling pretty tired right now so go home, relax and forget about everything until tomorrow. Well done!

If you’re interested in looking at your career options and would like to speak to a member of the team simply call 0131 553 6644 or email connect@chasepeople.com

Graham Hawthorn
Managing Director

3 Hot Jobs in Pharma: April 2017 Part 2

Every month, our vacancy page is packed with exciting jobs up for grabs from some of the biggest names in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

As always, we’re sharing three highlights to give you a taste of the hottest opportunities available right now.

Senior Brand Manager (Respiratory)

Our client is a privately-owned company which allows them the freedom to decide which research they invest in. They have medicines within Cardiovascular, Neonatal and Respiratory, and one of their main objectives is to become world leaders within respiratory medicine. As part of their continued development, they have created a new Senior Brand Manager position that will sit within their Respiratory Head Office Marketing team. A Competitive Basic, Bonus and Benefits package will be offered.

Location: Manchester

Apply Now


Regional Account Director (Diabetes)

Our client is a wholly owned subsidiary of Japan’s largest pharmaceutical company – a global industry leader with more than 30,000 employees in 70 countries. They seek a talented individual to lead the delivery of a local business plan through the management of a field based team and close interaction with key customers groups in primary care. This is a role that will provide the incumbent with true ownership of their local business, where you will create your own business plan and be 100% accountable for the achievement of your sales targets. Excellent Basic + healthcare + pension + bonus

Location: Leics / Lincs

Apply Now


Customer Account Manager (Diabetes)

Our client is a wholly owned subsidiary of Japan’s largest pharmaceutical company – a global industry leader with more than 30,000 employees in 70 countries. They now seek a talented individual to assist in the delivery of a local business plan through close interaction with key customers groups in primary care. This is a highly autonomous role that will suit a candidate with an entrepreneurial approach and exceptional commercial acumen, probably frustrated by the limitations of their current role. Excellent Basic + healthcare + pension + 20% bonus and car allowance.

Location: Central Manchester/Stockport

Apply Now

Getting Through Assessment Centres Successfully: Part 1

Part 1 – The Case Study

Once you’ve got through the first interview stage there’s a high likelihood that you’re going to go through to an assessment centre.

Assessment centres vary in length, however most of the time they will last either a half day or full day depending on the Company’s process and the number of people being hired.

Your recruitment consultant will advise you of these things prior to going into the assessment, so make sure you understand what’s involved in advance.

Every Company will have their own approach to how they run things, however there are certain elements that are regularly included;

  • A case study
  • A pre-prepared presentation
  • Group exercise (to assess how you interact with others)
  • Selling exercises / role playing
  • Psychometric testing
  • Competency Based Interview

Sprinkled throughout the content of the case study and wider assessment will be competencies you are being measured against that the employer will regard as critical to perform in the role. For sales and marketing based roles these could include;

  • Strategic thinking
  • Problem solving
  • Planning and organising
  • Customer service focus
  • Influencing others
  • Delivering results
  • Working together

For today’s blog we’re going to look in detail at the case study component of the assessment centre. This will something you are given on the day and asked to present back on.

A favourite option that a lot of Company’s use is a fictitious case study about a Company or brand with a specific challenge that needs to be addressed. It is less likely to be about the disease area and more about assessing your ability to transfer and demonstrate the skills they’re looking for to any given topic. Examples I’ve known candidates to tackle include how to turn around a failing territory for a made up disease area through to a failing national bank who needs to readdress their high street vs online strategy.

Regardless of the chosen topic the number one piece of advice I give to all my candidates is to use a significant amount of time to think and plan. If you’ve got two hours, for example, then I highly recommend you use an hour of that time to think about your options, sketch out your ideas on paper and get clear on the approach you’re going to take from a) a business perspective and b) a presentation layout perspective.

From a business perspective there’s rarely one outcome the assessors are looking for, but there is a distinction between something that has been well thought through vs something that hasn’t. By taking the time to think and plan you’ll have a much clearer head when it comes to the presentation and any questions that follow, so you’ll come across more confidently and considered than those who just get straight into the writing things out as soon as they start.

From a layout perspective make sure you use a structure that gives you a balanced, objective presentation where the audience can see a clear line of thinking such as;

  • The challenges you’re facing (within the context of the made up case study)
  • The (SMART) objectives you wish to achieve (ranked in priority order)=
  • A consideration of the different options you have
  • A clear recommendation of what to do
  • Awareness of the pros and cons of your approach (and why you have chosen this path)
  • Cite any stakeholders you’ll need to consult (i.e. your manager, team mates, customers etc.)
  • A timed plan of action with measures in place

Creating your presentation

There’s a high likelihood that you’re going to be using Microsoft PowerPoint to create your presentation. It’s also probable that you’ve used this before several times, however if you haven’t then I highly recommend you go online, download it and get to grips with the basics of adding new slides and getting bullet points onto the page.

When it comes to creating the slides there are three simple rules I like to follow;

  • Get the structure right
  • Title page
  • Contents page (highlighting the structure of your presentation)
  • The actual content pages (that mirrors your Contents page)
  • Summary slide (covering your key points one last time and any next steps)
  • Make one or two clear points per slide that you can expand on verbally
  • As a rule of thumb try to use no more than half a dozen bullet points per slide, with a limit of half a dozen words per point
  • Keep the font style and size consistent across pages; e.g. 44 for headings, 24 for other text (if you want to use sub-headings then you can always embolden this text)

If you’re ahead of time and you’ve got a lot of PowerPoint experience then of course feel free to add a more visual element to your slides, however it’s rare that you’re going to be marked on style over substance.

Delivering the presentation

There’s a chance that you’re going to have to be able to hook up your laptop to some form of visual display, such as a TV, monitor or projector. If you’re not versed in this then as a minimum research this online, dust off your laptop (or borrow a friends) and buy some cables that you can practice plugging a laptop into a TV with prior to your assessment. However we have had experience of Mac laptops not being compatible with visual displays, so if you are bringing a Mac please flag this in advance to your recruitment consultant.

Once you’re all hooked up it’s time to deliver your presentation.

Keep it simple. Follow your structure. Don’t read off the slides. Rehearse before you deliver it.

Remember you’re the only one who knows what you’re going to say, so as long as your thinking is clear in your mind (and on the slides) then you can be confident you will come across well.

Case Study Questions

These will be designed to test your clarity of thought out, so don’t let them blow you off course.

All you need to do is revert to the logical flow you created in building your presentation, including reminding the assessors of the options you considered and the pros and cons of the choices made.

Remember, there’s no right or wrong here, just better or worse, so stick to your guns and have courage in your convictions. If you show a logical thread of thinking and make an argument for your approach then this is a good indicator as to how good you operate under pressure when trying to influence either a customer or internal peer.

If it becomes really clear that the assessors think you’ve omitted something major from your thinking then of course it’s OK to be gracious rather than bull-headed about this. Simply thank them for pointing this out and say that you’d like to reflect on this point a little further.

Additional Advice

  • Stand up tall, not covering the screen you’re presenting (hands by your side, not in your pockets)
  • Don’t pace up and down or shift your feet
  • Work your way through the audience by engaging their eyes one person at a time for a few seconds each, before looking at the next person
  • Place your laptop in front of you so you can see the words whilst facing the audience
  • Smile from time to time. Make reference to the parts of the case study you found challenging
  • Keep on point and follow the structure you’ve already created
  • Speak slowly, don’t use slang or jargon and most importantly be passionate about your ideas!

OK so you can breathe a little bit now! Get a drink of water, walk off some energy and get some fresh air. In the next part of this blog we’re going to go through the other parts of your assessment centre; group exercises, roll playing and psychometric testing.

If you’re interested in looking at your career options and would like to speak to a member of the team simply call 0131 553 6644 or email connect@chasepeople.com

Kelly Davis
Executive Recruitment Consultant; Bucks, Berks, Oxon, South West, South Wales

Have a winning first interview

In Pharma and Healthcare there are likely to be somewhere between two and four stages to any hiring process which will consist of such things as; an interview with the trusted recruitment agency, a phone screen with an in house recruiter, a first round interview with the hiring manager, an assessment centre and a second or even third stage interview with more senior management.

Whatever the preferred approach by the hiring company, these different stages hold equal importance in my mind, as the employer uses each one not only to test you out in different ways but also to look for consistencies in your style, substance and character. It’s also highly likely that you’re competing in each interview stage against other people who, unfortunately for them, will start to drop out and become less in number as you start to become the preferred choice!

So let’s take a look at what’s required to get you through the all-important first round interview and onto the next (maybe final) stage.

The first stage of any job seeking process is absolutely key. Regardless of who is assessing you, as it’s the first impression you’re going to make and if certain themes or concerns crop up during this stage they might set the scene for the remaining stages and assessments. In fact many believe that most people make a decision about your suitability within the first 2 minutes of meeting you, so you need to bring your ‘A’ game!

As well as getting a ‘feel’ for you and your capabilities, the first stage will also be the time when the employer speaks to and ultimately weeds out the majority of the applicant pool.
Whilst the majority of the effort should be made by you (the candidate) in terms of preparation, the employer should also be selling their company and opportunity to you and set the scene very clearly about the expectations and opportunities associated with the job.

Some people spend very little time preparing for interviews, thinking ‘I’m good on my feet’ and ‘I’ll be able to win people over, I’m a first rate salesperson’. However if this sounds like you (either now or in a past life) then I urge you to keep reading. You’re going to need to step things up if you’re going to reach your potential.

At the other end of things there are those who spend literally hours and hours trying to second guess what questions they’ll be asked at interview, what to say, and how they’re going to force key messages about themselves into the discussion. This approach is likely to be equally as ineffective as failing to prepare, with the added downside of you losing hours of your life for no positive outcome.

After coaching hundreds of candidates through the first stage of the job interview process there are six key things I always urge they focus on to maximise the chances of making a good first impression and getting on the road to successfully landing their next job;

1) Know the job you’re going for in enough detail

This involves two parts; researching the company and then researching the actual position you’re applying for. And make no mistake, you need to have done your homework for both.
The internet will provide a good starting point for what you need to know about the company. This will include having a clear idea about what the company history, vision, strategy, values and culture are all about. This in turn should feed your responses and allow you to mirror the reasons why you want to work for that company.

However this is available to all and it will be expected that you will have researched thoroughly. You should think about what you can do to make yourself stand out. For example, have you spoken to someone currently doing the same / or similar job? Have you spoken to someone elsewhere in the Company? Have you spoken to competitors to see what they think? Have you spoken to customers to get their view? The more effort you go to the more positively you will be viewed and the more confident you will feel.

The other part is knowing the role you’re applying for really well. Before having an interview you should have written confirmation about the job description and remuneration, ideally sent to you via your recruitment consultant. The remuneration doesn’t need to be specifically agreed at this stage but both you and the employer should be clear about the ‘ball park expectations’ before you get into the detail of selling yourself as the ideal candidate.

Take time to read the job specifications and list out the top five or six points that you think they’re looking for.

2) Know why you’re applying for the job.

Again this is two part process. You’re going to have to convince the employer that from reading and learning about the company you’re really excited about the opportunity to join them. You should have at least two to three really convincing reasons for this that link back to their history, vision, strategy, values or culture. You should then be able to seamlessly make the link as to how these align with your values and career goals as a professional.

Once you’ve done this you’re going to need to get more specific. That means being able to refer back to the job specification (with the five to six key points mentioned earlier) with examples of things you’ve done or experience you have that will add value to the company. A simple way to frame this is to use the story telling model; Past predicts present, predicts future.

If you can show you’ve done something of relevance in the past then you’re going to have a good chance of convincing someone you’ve going to do it in the future. Things like sales figures, analysing your territory, dealing with difficult people, making decisions, building relationships and influencing are the subjects that come up most in interviews, so you’ll do well to have examples of success related to these things you’ve done in the past.

3) Use SCAR answers

There are different answer models that you can use, with the most common being STARL (Situation, Task, Action, Result, Learnt). However another one that works well is a slight adaptation of this – SCAR. This means you can give answers using the following structure for almost any competency based question that starts with; ‘Tell me about a time when…. you had to influence a difficult customer’.

The Situation… Was that I had a customer who was one of the most influential prescribers on my territory. However he only prescribed my competitors product and organised lots of speaker meetings across the region. This was having a huge impact on my sales.

The Challenges... I struggled to get an audience with this doctor as he was so wrapped up with the competitor. Plus he’d never actually used my product in a suitable patient group so his user experience wasn’t great.

The Action… I managed to get the doctor to speak to our National Key Opinion Leader about his experience with our product, with a view to him trialling it in a few new patients over the next three months.

The Result… The doctor found our drug to be really effective and he is now using it as one of his first few options for therapy. He also named it at a speaker meeting that was organised by a competitor and a couple of my customers prescribed it after hearing the endorsement. My sales started to take off and have kept growing ever since.

Using this model allows you to be really clear and consistent when providing answers, showing your experience to be authentic and well structured. It also means the interviewer can ask clarification points related to the specific components of your answer if required, so you don’t become derailed if you are challenged during the interview process.

4) Get clear about how the role will challenge you

Nobody’s perfect, so selling yourself credibly means having a good understanding of both your strengths and weaknesses. Or in this case, areas where you’ll be challenged in the role. If you make it sound like this job is going to be an easy ride for you that will not do you any favours in the interview. You’ll come across as someone who is either unaware of their development areas or unwilling to push themselves to be better.

If you struggle with this type of thing you can always take your main strength and turn it into a weakness that you are aware of. For example someone who works hard might have a weakness of taking on too much and not finishing things properly if they’re not careful. Alternatively you might have an element of the new job that you’ve not done before. By identifying it, embracing it as being new and having some early thoughts about how you will approach this will make you look like a really thoughtful and responsible candidate.

5) Ask relevant and insightful questions

Towards the end of the interview you’re likely to be asked if you have any questions to ask the interviewer. You should always prepare these in advance and use your judgement on the day to determine whether they’ve been covered or not (so you don’t end up asking a question regarding something that has already been mentioned). Some good questions you could ask include;

  • What are the most important attributes for someone to do well in this role?
  • What are your expectations for this role during the first two to three months?
  • What do you like best about working for this company?

Make sure you make a note of these answers, you might well have use for them at the next stage of interview!

6) Prepare a presumptive close

This is can work well when going for a sales role. For example;

“From speaking to you today everything you’ve said sounds really exciting. What are the likely next steps from here?”

If you’re going for a sales role this shows you have the courage to ask for commitment for a next step, especially as you’re doing it in a considered and elegant way, which is a great trait to have in Pharma and Healthcare sales.

7) Dress to impress

Finally it goes without saying that you’re going to need to dress well at interview. Iron your shirt, shine your shoes and don’t try to be overly ‘trendy’. Pharma and Healthcare can often be quite conservative industries and at the end of the day it’s the person you’re being interviewed whom you need to impress, not your peer group. From the moment you drive into the car park assume that their eyes are on you – so be prepared, follow the advice you’re given and make it happen!

If you’re interested in looking at your career options and would like to speak to a member of the team simply call 0131 553 6644 or email connect@chasepeople.com

Nick Johnson
UK Business Lead – Healthcare

3 Hot Jobs in Healthcare: April 2017 Part One

Every month, our vacancy page is packed with exciting jobs up for grabs from some of the biggest names in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

As always, we’re sharing three highlights to give you a taste of the hottest opportunities available right now.

Contract Manager (Medical Devices)

As a result of an internal promotion,a highly regarded healthcare manufacturer are looking to appoint a Contracts Manager to maintain and build key contracts and win new target competitor accounts across the territory. This will be suitable for an individual with a strong industry background and contacts across the NHS market at purchasing level. You can expect an excellent financial package, and also have the chance to represent a people-focused business with ambitious growth plans for the next few years.

Location: South East

Apply Now


Healthcare Development Manager (Medical Devices)

A rapidly expanding major player in the medical device marketplace are currently recruiting for a Healthcare Development Manager to work within their Wound Care/Compression division covering their Kent, Sussex, E Anglia, London, Home Counties territory. This role has a business development focus to it, so you will be required to grow a robust pipeline of accounts (NHS Trusts) across all appropriate sectors as well as manage any existing relationships that have been established. The role comes with an above average financial package.

Location: South East

Apply Now


Territory Account Manager (Medical Devices)

An international Healthcare Company are looking for a Territory Account Manager (Hospital Pharmacy Solutions) to join their high performing UK business to cover their lucrative North East, Yorkshire, East Midlands Territory. The role is covering a multi-£m territory selling a range of ‘patient ready’ pharmacy solutions into NHS Trusts. In this role you will manage the territory as a ‘business within a business’. You must also reside on territory (ideally based in Yorkshire).

Location: North England

Apply Now

2 Hot Jobs in Pharma: April Part One

Every month, our vacancy page is packed with exciting jobs up for grabs from some of the biggest names in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

As always, we’re sharing three highlights to give you a taste of the hottest opportunities available right now.

Regional Business Manager (Leading Product)

An Award Winning Pharmaceutical organisation has a new opportunity for a Regional Business Manager. The role involves looking after a team of multi disciplined specialists and would suit someone with strong leadership, coaching and counselling skills, with the ability to communicate clear expectations and objectives and with demonstrable and credible sales success. Cardiovascular experience would be useful, but is not essential. Excellent salary, competitive bonus and benefits.

This organisation was recently voted as one of the Best Companies to work for due to their very open people-focused culture and flexible working environment.

Location: North West

Apply Now


Hospital Business Manager (Secondary Care)

With this role, an emerging International Pharmaceutical Company is offering a unique and exciting platform for the successful candidate. You will be responsible for delivering commercial goals through the leadership and management of a specialist KAM team. The successful candidate will be offered a Highly Competitive Basic, Bonus and Benefits package.

Location: South UK

Apply Now