I am a PharmD with 15 plus years of experience in a wide range of pharmacy settings.
I am interested in gaining experience in the specialty compliance regulations field. How can I best find, and secure an entry level position in order to eventually work long term in this area?
Getting into the field of pharmacy compliance and regulatory affairs quite honestly does not have a specific formula. The best advice I can give is to recommend that you directly visit the websites for the government agencies in your local area – city, county, and state – and watch their job boards for pharmacist positions that come available.
That’s exactly how I did it.
If you’re lucky you might catch a posting for one of these on Indeed.com but these government positions usually have finite open filing periods and you must make sure you’re vigilant and apply during those windows. The government hardly ever budges so if you miss one filing period then you have to wait until the next one opens up.
The good thing about these positions is that they tend to hire pharmacists that have a good number of years experience under their belt (they usually aren’t all into the whole “you must have a residency” thing, so don’t fret if you don’t have one).
Also, I’ve seen a recent new development where certain organizations are offering certificates or certification programs in pharmacy compliance and regulatory affairs.
I cannot vouch for any of these. I have never done any of these even though I have held two full time regulatory positions (and currently consult on the side) in pharmacy compliance and have never once took a course in it. It was all on-the-job learning.
However, if you’d like to take one of these courses just to take it and learn more, that’s fine, I have nothing against them.
However, in my own experience, having any of these certificates has never been a requirement or even a “plus/nice to have” for any of the compliance jobs I’ve ever had.
Just remember, most regulatory and compliance positions tend to be with government agencies and government agencies in general tend to move slowly, so start your search now and just be patient.
Please check back in and let me know how things are going!