As a pharmacy technician, you’re the engine of the pharmacy. You not only manage inventory, but you’re also the friendly face who takes care of customers when they walk in. You help them get the medications they need in a timely fashion. Your strong organizational and inventory management skills keep your pharmacy healthy on the back end. But your helpfulness and customer service skills will keep your pharmacy healthy on the front end. Strong customer service keeps your customers coming back, builds a connection with the community, and helps your pharmacy stay competitive. Following are a few important tips for excellent customer service:
- Be friendly and welcoming. A friendly greeting as customers approach the counter goes a long way towards making them feel comfortable and valued. Being openly helpful and ready to serve sends the message that the pharmacy cares about their wellbeing, and creates a feeling of trust.
- Protect customer privacy. The HIPAA law prohibits health service providers from revealing the medical information of their customers. At all times, when interacting with patrons, take great care to protect their privacy. Be discreet when discussing protected medical information such as prescriptions, medications, or medical conditions.
- Learn customer names. Show that you care about your customers by making an effort to learn their names. Addressing customers by name helps them to feel like you care about getting to know them. This helps them to feel comfortable with your pharmacy and encourages them to return in the future.
- Prepare in advance. Because the lines at the pharmacy can get rather long, learn to build in shortcuts to your time on the shift. For example, if you know specific customers come in regularly, have their prescriptions ready before they arrive.
- Be friendly on the phone. As a pharmacy technician, always be courteous and helpful when speaking to customers by phone. If there’s an issue that you are unable to assist with, politely let them know that you’ll place them on hold for the pharmacist.
- Encourage return of expired medications. Part of customer care is caring for their wellbeing outside the walls of your pharmacy. If your pharmacy location offers a drug take-back program, encourage your customers to come in and dispose of their expired and unused medications at the pharmacy.
- Always be professional. Always behave and respond in a calm and courteous manner. As a pharmacy technician serving customers, you represent not only yourself but the pharmacy as well. Often, a customer’s interaction with the pharmacy technician forms their primary impression of the pharmacy. It’s up to you to make sure it’s a positive one.
To learn more about how to enhance your role as a pharmacy technician, download our handbook.