Pharmacy Technician in training Ailbhe Reilly shares her story
“With Hickey’s Pharmacy, I always felt that the opportunities are there for anyone who wants them. There is so much training you can do through the company, but they also encourage you to use your own initiative.”
Ailbhe started working with Hickey’s Pharmacy in 2016 as a Pharmacy Healthcare Advisor in our Maynooth store and it did not take her long to show her enthusiasm for her role and caring for our customers.
“I like the teamwork in the store. Helping our customers is really rewarding. I have enjoyed getting to know our customers and helping them with their healthcare needs.”
When a new team member joins Hickey’s Pharmacy, there is an induction programme that all new starters participate in. Having been nominated to be an induction buddy Ailbhe, spent time in our support office to learn how best to support new employees during their first few days in store and has been a great support in welcoming new team members to Hickey’s.
In addition to the regular training in-store, Ailbhe was encouraged to attend training days for Vichy, and vitamins as well as dispensary training which led to a pharmacy technician course.
“Hickey’s Pharmacy provide absolutely fantastic training opportunities! Not only did this help with product knowledge, but I found the training days very enjoyable. I also completed basic dispensary training, which gave me insight into working as a pharmacy technician.”
“I was actively encouraged to think about myself in the company long-term. I expressed an interest in the dispensary and was encouraged to apply for the technician course through Hickey’s Pharmacy, so that I could work and study at the same time.”
The technician course is a two year long training programme that provides in depth knowledge about medicines and healthcare to provide support to the Pharmacist in the dispensary.
Not only is Ailbhe currently working through her technician training, she has also decided to undergo a Pharmacy degree in Cork. Currently, she works in both our Maynooth and Ballincollig stores to accommodate her university schedule.
“When I found out that I had the opportunity to study Pharmacy, Hickey’s were 100% supportive, and gave me a position close to campus so that I could continue my technician course. My manager in Ballincollig has been particularly supportive. My experience working in store and beginning the technician course has helped me with my studies, as well as encouraging me to take on this Pharmacy course in the first place.”
Ailbhe’s passion for healthcare has carried her through her education and professional career. We are delighted to have her as a part of our team and support her in her journey.
Area Manager Nathalie O’Connor shares her story
Nathalie is one of our Area Managers, overseeing a number of our pharmacies stretching from North Dublin, Co Meath to Co Louth. “I find it very rewarding to successfully lead a team and identify the potential in team members and seeing them progress.”
Originally, Nathalie started her journey with Hickey’s Pharmacy in 2004 as a Healthcare Advisor. “I like being able to help people, make people feel better. You have the opportunity to create a bond with the customers – they become like your own family.”
In 2006 Nathalie was offered the opportunity to start the Pharmacy Technician course. “Having been a Healthcare Advisor I had the opportunity to see what the role of a Pharmacy Technician entailed – I could see it was interesting and a position I would like to progress to. I showed an eagerness and put myself forward – was delighted to have the opportunity to be supported by Hickey’s – I received on the job the training to complete my qualification.”
During this two year Pharmacy Technician course, Nathalie continued to work in our busy Henry Street store. Once qualified to as a Pharmacy Technician she then worked in the dispensary alongside the Pharmacist, assisting with prescriptions and medications.
Nathalie’s success with Hickey’s Pharmacy continued and in 2009 she received her first Store Manager position in our O’Connell St store. “I’ve always found there have been opportunities to take on additional responsibilities and progress my career. When you are ambitious you look for opportunities. Becoming a Store Manager was a great opportunity.”
Nathalie then worked as a Store Manager in a number of our Dublin stores, including: Henry St, Northside, Harold’s Cross and Phibsboro. In addition to managing stores, Nathalie also took the opportunity to become our official trainer for the new trainee managers. This led her to her current position as Area Manager in 2018. “There is a lot to learn but it’s always interesting and there are the support structures in place to support you to learn.”
Still wanting to further her knowledge and skill set, Nathalie is currently undertaking a Business & Management degree with the support from Hickey’s Pharmacy.
Nathalie’s career and personal success is due to her impressive determination and we are happy to have supported her along her journey. We’re delighted to have such a well-rounded and ambitious colleague on our team.
Store Manager Gobnait Cronin shares her journey
Gobnait is our ambitious store manager in Ballyphehane, Cork. Her journey started down the road in our Ballincollig store as a Pharmacy Healthcare Advisor. Gobnait started just before the busy Christmas season in 2011. “The Ballincollig store was very friendly with a great team atmosphere. It’s a large store and I started just as the Christmas season was upon us, everyone was happy to help me out and I soon settled in. Our customer focus was what I liked most about the company and I feel it is what set us apart from other pharmacies.”
Within 6 months, Gobnait began studying to become a Pharmacy Technician. Technicians are trained healthcare providers who work closely with the Pharmacist, assisting with prescriptions and other medicines. “I learned so much while working in the dispensary and that knowledge is still used daily in my current role as manager”.
In June 2017 Gobnait saw the Trainee Manager role advertised on the Hickey’s Pharmacy website. “I asked a colleague who had completed the management training programme with Hickey’s what the role was like. After speaking to them I decided to apply and was called to interview in the support office. The rest is history!”
Today, Gobnait leads our Ballyphehane team, “I like helping my team reach their potential by supporting them in any way I can so that the store can reach its potential. I love training and learning alongside my team and I enjoy helping our customers in whatever way we can. You’re always learning and facing new challenges! The staff in Hickey’s are truly unique. The people in the company and the atmosphere instore mean it’s a positive environment to work in. That positivity makes you want to get up and go to work every day.”
Store Manager Beverly Walsh shares her journey with Hickey’s Pharmacy
Beverly started at Hickey’s Pharmacy in 2012 in our Fortunestown Tallaght store. In her Pharmacy Healthcare Advisor role, Beverly was the first point of contact for customers. Day to day, she helped customers with general health related queries such as explaining OTC medicines, product benefits, skincare & make up advice, and detailing the wide variety of in-store services we offer.
Her motivation throughout her career with us always has been the customer and caring for their needs. “Being in the heart of the community, I have built so many relationships with my customers.” She explained that at Hickey’s Pharmacy “the staff are well trained, there’s a good structure, and everyone is customer focused. All staff have very good relationships built with the customers, this really stands out.”
With Beverly’s sense of customer care and eagerness to progress, it didn’t take very long for her to start her Pharmacy Technician training. Here, she learned in depth knowledge about medicines and healthcare to provide support to the Pharmacist.
In November 2015, Beverly worked hard and showed great initiative, and was given the opportunity to train for a Store Manager position and jumped on it. “I wanted to prove myself as a person and to show my capabilities.”
Today, Beverly manages our pharmacy at The Square Shopping Centre. She enjoys helping her team achieve their goals and targets and helping individuals develop their skills. “Hickey’s is a great company to work for, very staff orientated. Time is invested in staff to further their training needs, with constant support and encouragement.”
Trainee Store Manager Michelle Kearns shares her journey with Hickey’s Pharmacy
Michelle started working at Hickey’s Pharmacy in 2016 in our Phibsboro store as a Pharmacy Healthcare Advisor. This was Michelle’s first ever position in a pharmacy and soon turned into her passion and career, “I was very interested to see what was involved in pharmacy. I enjoyed the whole experience of my Healthcare Advisor role, from the high level of training and knowledge I was given and support from the company to working with a friendly and fantastic team.”
Above all else, Michelle enjoyed caring for her customers, “getting to know the patients and customers have brought laughter and joy to my working days. These people are the reason why I love my job here and I continue to do so every day.” In a short time with Hickey’s Pharmacy, her drive along with the company’s guidance led Michelle to advance into the Trainee Store Manager programme.
Our Trainee Store Manager programme is designed to introduce an experienced Pharmacy Healthcare Advisor to the role of a Pharmacy Store Manager through placement in a number of our stores over a six month period. Working alongside an assigned Store Manager as a mentor, the Trainee Store Manager receives training in all aspects of the operation of the pharmacy as well as a wide range of experience in individual departments throughout the store such as back of house controls, front of shop setup, dispensary, OTC, Fuji and skincare. They also assist their mentor in being accountable for managing a team and ensuring customer care is delivered to the highest standard by the team.
“I was very interested in the trainee manager programme and I knew that Hickey’s was where I wanted to pursue my career and further myself. I had great support in doing this with my Store Managers and Area Manager.”
Having worked in a number of our stores as part of her traineeship, Michelle has now returned to our Phibsboro store helping lead our fantastic team there as well as being trained in store management responsibilities.
“I have been given so many great opportunities in training and development at Hickey’s Pharmacy. Everyone from the support office right down to store level have been very supportive to me and it is a pleasure to work alongside these people. I have learned so much and it really has helped with my confidence. Every day I am learning something new and from this, I can do what I love doing best, which is looking after people. This really is what we are about in Hickey’s.”
In the future, Michelle looks forward to being a store manager and passing on her knowledge and expertise to her fellow team members.
Winner of the Innovation & Service Development Award at the IPU Pharmacy Awards 2018
We were delighted to accept the award for Innovation and Service Development Award at the 2018 IPN Irish Pharmacy Awards.
Collecting the Award on behalf of the Hickey’s Pharmacy team were Tom Concannon - Superintendent Pharmacist, Amy Flynn - Supervising Pharmacist in Northside and Rebecca Maxwell - Support Pharmacist in Terenure. Both stores were instrumental in getting the StartRight Medication Service launched successfully.
StartRight is a service for our patients who are on new or adjusted medication. Following an initial consultation with a pharmacist in store, the pharmacist arranges a follow up phone call after one week to give patients the opportunity to ask any questions they have about their medication. Feedback from our patients has been extremely positive.
Finalists in 5 categories at the IPU Pharmacy Awards 2018
We’re delighted to announce we are finalists in 5 categories at the upcoming Irish Pharmacy Awards - including Pharmacy Team of the Year and Group Community Pharmacist of the Year. Community Pharmacy Team of the Year
The Hickey’s Pharmacy team in Finglas West have been selected as a finalist for Community Pharmacy Team of the Year. They are known and loved by the community they serve - for over 20 years they have provided a professional and caring pharmacy service to the people in their locality.
Ivana Forsythe, Supervising Pharmacist of Hickey’s Pharmacy Harold’s Cross is a finalist for Group Community Pharmacist of the Year. Our Harold’s Cross store has established itself in Dublin as a year round late-night pharmacy. As well as offering care to the community, Ivana ensures that all her staff are trained to offer extensive preventive care options to her patients through extensive health screening including BP monitoring, diabetes screening, rapid sore throat testing, flu vaccination, emergency contraception and more.
Our third finalist is Pamela Davin who works in Hickey’s Pharmacy Northside. Pamela is nominated for Community Pharmacy Technician of the Year category and has worked in our Northside store for the past 17 years. Throughout this time Pamela has continued to develop herself and adapt her skills to meet the increased demands required of pharmacy technicians. In addition to assisting with staff training, Pamela is competent in the delivery of a wide variety of clinical services.
Tom Concannon, Superintendent Pharmacist of Hickey’s Pharmacy Group for 10 years, is a finalist for Superintendent Pharmacist of the Year. Tom currently leads a Pharmacist team of 77 which is continually growing as more stores open. Tom has achieved a lot over the last 12 months, introducing new services and initiatives such as partnering with Diabetes Ireland and DCU to research the effects of a diabetes training programme on patients with type 2 diabetes, launched a Sore Throat test service in stores and rolled out our StartRight Medication Service to stores.
We are also a finalist in the Innovation & Service Development category for the Hickey’s StartRight Medication Service - a service is for patients who are on new or adjusted medication.
IPU Community Pharmacy Team of the Year 2017
Our team in Fortunestown, Tallaght were Finalist’s in Community Pharmacy Team of the Year 2017 at Irish Pharmacy Awards , on Saturday 20th May 2017, at Clayton Hotel Dublin 4.
Our team were shortlisted for this award for their constant support and involvement in the community that they tirelessly serve. They strongly believe in providing a holistic service to patients, which includes so much more than simply issuing medication and provides a stable support network for their community. Our team at Hickey’s Fortunestown work harmoniously. Each and every member of the team knows both their own roles and responsibilities as well as those of their team members allowing the team to work in complete synergy. Everyone works extremely hard to achieve the common goal of providing expert medical healthcare to their community in Tallaght, and they do so with a smile on their face no matter what challenges they may face. They are an extremely friendly, welcoming team, who always put the patient and the community at the centre of every healthcare scenario; for example, providing medication and patient counselling, offering clinical services and promotion of public health. The team have helped so many people in the various stages of their lives.
“We love supporting our community through different projects and will continue to do so for many years to come through a focused and unified approach. We aim for excellence in quality of care through innovation, and support our community to prevent illness and disease” The Tallaght Team.
Retail Excellence Ireland Best National Pharmacy of the Year 2016
Our team in Ballincollig, Cork won the prestigious Retail Excellence Ireland Award for the Best National Pharmacy of the year in 2016 . This award ceremony is the largest, most prestigious and recognised event in the Irish Retail Industry calendar. The objective of the awards is to recognise and reward retail stores, companies, websites, individuals and suppliers who deliver exemplary standards within the Irish retail industry. Being part of and winning this award inspired and encourage team members to work together to deliver the ultimate experience to our customers and consequently drive business sales and success.
IPU Community Pharmacy Team of the Year Award 2015
Our team in Gorey, Wexford were the 2015 Irish Pharmacy Award Winners for Community Pharmacy of the year The accomplishments of the team in Gorey have been inspirational to our other branches and demonstrates what can be achieved when a team is motivated and energised to succeed. The team clearly demonstrated that pharmacies can compete successfully by offering the best service to their customers. By focusing on customer service and a high level of training the team have consistently exceeded their objectives for the store, despite increased competition in the area.