Judging the Nonverbals of a Pharmaceutical Candidate

When it comes to hiring a new pharmacist or pharmacy tech for your retail or hospital pharmacy, how can you tell if a candidate will be a good fit within your team?


Look for nonverbal clues, such as his or her body language.


Read below for more insight into reading a pharmaceutical candidate’s nonverbal clues:


  • How firm is the candidate’s handshake? Don’t laugh; the firmness or flaccidness of a handshake can say a lot about a person’s self-confidence as well as his or her ability to interact with people. You’re looking for someone who’s handshake is firm, but not overly so. A shake that lasts about three to five seconds is an appropriate length.
  • Does the candidate look you in the eye? If he or she can’t or won’t that could be a sign of shyness or arrogance.
  • Does the candidate slouch in his chair? This could be a sign of insecurity, a lax attitude to life in general and sloppy work and low self-esteem.
  • What about how he walks. Does he stride confidently, or does he seem to shuffle?
  • Did the candidate dress appropriately for a job interview? Professional dress indicates respect for the interview process. Well-groomed and clean hair, professional attire and accessories (a good purse for women and/or briefcase for both men and women), and shined shoes show that the candidate takes the interview process seriously and cares enough about making a good impression.
  • Nonverbal cues can also help you tell if a candidate is less than truthful. Signs of lying/fudging include:
    –   Making a sudden move of the head when you ask a question. This reaction could mean the person may be about to tell you a lie.
    – Someone who shuffles her feet feels uncomfortable and may be uncomfortable because she’s about to, or already has, told a lie.
    – Someone who doesn’t want to answer a question or deal with a difficult situation might put his hand over his mouth, subconsciously signaling that he’s trying to cut off communication.
    – Liars can be somewhat hostile and so someone who points a lot could be lying.
  • Hands and arms lying gently in an applicant’s lap indicate comfort and confidence. If a candidate uses his hands (in a hands open with palms visible position) to articulate a point, it indicates warmth and sincerity.

Rx relief® can conduct preliminary interviews with pharmacy candidates, recommending for subsequent, in-person interviews with you only with those who meet or exceed your requirements. Contact our recruiters today to learn more about our pharmacy recruiting services.