MedReps released its 2014 Pharmaceutical Sales Salary Report.
If you are interested in pharma sales, this is a great report for you, with lots of relevant information for anyone entering pharmaceutical sales.
As in anything else, if you specialize, you’ll make more money. The report says that specialty pharma reps (who call on medical specialists that treat less common diseases and conditions) make more money than traditional drug reps who call on general practice physicians.
Ramp Up Your Resume with Keywords
The first thing you’ve got to do is get those resume keywords that will communicate your interest in pharmaceutical sales (science, biology, chemistry, zoology, nutrition, sales experience, account management, event management, communications, psychology, customer service, and more)
If you do have a technical degree (B.S. in Biology, Chemistry, etc.), you need to get these words on your resume. A lot of times, medical sales recruiters will search using ‘biology,’ ‘chemistry,’ ‘zoology,’ even ‘nutrition,’ because one of our searches was with a company that was very focused on that.
If you don’t have any of the key words you need in your background (like maybe you don’t have a technical degree, then consider doing a preceptorship (aka job shadow, ride-along). Going to work with someone who is doing the job you’re interested in will give you a lot of information you need for your new job and your interview. Put that preceptorship on your resume, and this will give you key words you need (physician, pharmaceutical, etc.). It’s a great talking point, and it shows additional strategy on your part because it shows that you’re willing to do something you won’t get paid for, but that will actually be of assistance.
Write a Good Resume Objective
Your objective needs to be clear. Please don’t put that you want pharmaceutical sales in your objective, because that really pigeon-holes you and possibly gets you overlooked for other positions that are actually quite good, that you might want to be considered for. So maybe you want your objective to be: “Sales position at a growing medical or healthcare company”.
Work Your Contacts (Network)
Use your local/personal network, and use your social media network, like Facebook or LinkedIn. Try to find people who know someone in this area, and simply ask for assistance. Ask for an introduction. Ask for an opportunity to buy someone breakfast, just to talk. Say, “Hey, I’m not looking for an interview…I just want to learn more so that when I do get the interview, I’m more successful and can get the job.
Expand your thinking on this networking thing. Your mom, your dad, aunts, uncles, cousins, teachers, friends….they all have friends. What do they do? Who do they know? Ask questions. People want to help one another. If you ask for assistance, they’ll help you as much as they can. But…you have to tell them specifically what you want them to do. If you just say you need “assistance,” it’s very vague, and it sounds like a lot of work. But if you say, “Look, can I send you my resume? If you can think of 5 people in your network that you think might know someone who would be looking for someone like myself, could you just forward my resume to them for me? I would really appreciate it. If there’s anything I can do to help you, I would be happy to, and I would certainly appreciate this very much. ” Ask specifically for what you want.
Stay in touch with your network. Communicate with them every week or every two weeks. Don’t do it by phone…that becomes a burden. Communicate by email or social media…this way, they can just read it and delete it or go on. That’s OK, because it reminds them of you, and that’s all you need it to do.
When you have an opportunity to interview, you’ve really got to shine. Do your homework. You need to know that company better than anyone else. You need to understand their process. You need to be ready.
If you get the interview and you are asked what you have done to prepare for a sales position, make sure your answer is good. When I say ‘good,’ I mean tell them something. Don’t say, “Well, I haven’t had a sales job yet…how could I prepare for it?” You can do a lot of things. You can read sales books. I love SPIN Selling. Strategic Selling is a very important selling style. You can watch YouTube videos (there are tons of instructional videos available for absolutely free). You can read blogs and online articles that talk about how to be successful in a sales role. You can read a magazine…Selling Power is a very strong magazine.
There are a lot of things you can do to show that you have prepared yourself and boosted your skill sets in order to do this job well, that you’re very serious about the job and that you intend to be successful. If you can communicate this in the interview, you’ll get the job offer you’re looking for.
Want to know more? I’ve put together a FREE webinar: How to Get Into Medical Sales. Sign up now.
This webinar will show you the 6 essential steps to transitioning into medical sales, the 4 things you absolutely must say in the interview, and much more. You don’t want to miss this!
See how to answer interview questions in a FREE video app for Android
Practice your medical sales interview answers with a professional coach in this free app–99% of users say it improves interview answers immediately!
We’ve launched a Job Interview Questions and Answers app for Droid, available on Google Play!
It makes how to answer interview questions a snap, giving you incredible confidence and effectiveness in your next medical sales job interview.
How does it work? It’s so easy…
- Watch me ask you a tough-but-typical interview question.
- Video yourself answering it so you can see what you look and sound like to the interviewer (nobody sees it but you…this is incredibly helpful to know how you appear to the interviewer).
- See me (a job interview expert and coach) answer that question…thought process, important points, everything.
This makes you see what may be missing from your original answer and tells you exactly what the hiring manager really wants to hear from you in order to feel good about hiring you. These will help you sell yourself for the job.
Because you know that your answers will be MUCH stronger, your confidence level will skyrocket…you’ll feel great in your interview, and you’ll do very well in it.
The list of available questions is amazing, and you can choose which ones you want…here’s a sample:
- Tell me about yourself.
- Why do you want to work here?
- Why are you looking to leave your current job?
- We’re not sure you have enough experience.
- What salary are you looking for?
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
…and so many more.
Get more information here: Job Interview Questions and Answers App
Get it on Google Play: Job Interview Questions and Answers App
Can a 30-60-90-Day Sales Plan make YOUR interview amazing and get you a job offer in 24 hours? You bet. See what it did for Jeanne:
Hello Peggy! I just wanted to let you know my results from using your 30 60 90 day sales plan. [Prior to purchasing your plan, my face-to-face] interview went great! As we wrapped up [the hiring manager] said, “We are going to have another interview and I want you to be able to tell me in our next meeting how you plan on tackling this job.” I put together my 30 60 90 day sales plan. At my next interview, when the hiring manager asked if I had given any thought as to how I would tackle the job and when I responded with, “Well, yes I have. I have prepared a 90 day plan that I would love to share with you.” The look on his face was priceless!! He was not expecting this, Peggy. The interview went amazing. I was offered the job within 24 hours. — Jeanne
Look at what Jeanne is teaching us here: Most people would have thought about how they planned to tackle the job, and maybe have formulated an answer before they went to the interview. Jeanne took it up a notch with her 90-day plan and became the star candidate. The 30 60 90-Day Plan is the something ‘extra’ that can absolutely make you stand out and make the company very eager to hire you.
Medical sales interviews are more competitive than ever. If you want the job, you must bring a 30-60-90-Day Sales Plan. Find out more and get your 30 60 90 Day Sales Plan right now.
Medical sales is an extremely competitive field, but you can still get a medical sales job even with no experience–and it doesn’t even have to be pharma–unless you want it to be. You can find a role in medical device, laboratory or clinical diagnostics, imaging, pathology, medical software or healthcare IT…the possibilities are wide open.
I’ve put together a guide for how to get a medical sales job, with templates, coaching, and more.
Here’s more…my free training medical sales job training webinar that walks you through the 6 essential steps for transitioning into a medical sales role, especially if you have no experience. Click the image below to register.
Search ‘interview’ in Amazon’s Kindle store and what pops up #1 on the list?
I am thrilled that my ebook holds the #1 spot. Thanks to everyone who has purchased it…if you haven’t yet, take this opportunity to get it.
It contains ‘a wealth of useful and practical suggestions’ that are ‘easy to understand and assimilate thanks to the concise detailed explanations and numerous examples’ (from one of the dozens of great reviews).
The App That Gets You a Medical Sales Job – From THE Medical Sales Recruiter
I am very pleased to announce the launch of my latest FREE app…Med Sales Jobs.
This comprehensive Android app includes:
- Targeted Medical Sales Job Search Tips—my top Insider Secrets as a National Medical Sales Recruiter
- The Key to Getting Unlimited Interviews at Top Companies
- The Trick to Getting MULTIPLE Job Offers –No Matter Your Age or Experience Level
This app reveals VITAL secrets for your:
- Interview Questions
- 30-60-90-Day Plan
- Interview Attire
- And More!
Whether you’re a medical sales veteran or looking for your first job, you will dominate even the strongest competition with this app.
*** See a complete app description and reviews on Google Play: Med Sales Jobs
What are the 3 most important tips for a pharmaceutical sales resume?
Science, Sales, and Stats.
Pharmaceutical sales jobs are popular, highly-sought-after positions with lots of competition for each one. If you want the job, you need to make your resume stand out and grab the attention of a sales manager. What do they care about? They care about whether or not you can ring the cash register. That depends on your background and your skills.
A science background is only going to help you in pharma sales. If you actually have a Bachelor of Science in say, Chemistry or Biology, that’s a huge plus. If not, that’s OK–but if you can, at least point out any science course work you’ve completed. That goes in your Education section.
Sales jobs are all about sales, right? Can you sell? What have you done? Any past pharma sales jobs are appropriate, of course, but also think about other arenas: retail, B2C, B2B, door-to-door sales, or even fundraising activities. Anything where you went out and came back with sales or donations is proof that you can do the same for this company.
What are stats? Numbers. If you can prove your skills by talking about them in terms of numbers, dollars, or percentages, that’s always going to make hiring managers sit up and take notice of you. For instance, don’t just say, “Responsible for increasing sales.” Say, “Increased sales 18% in 3 months,” or, “Sold X widgets to new customers,” or “Raised $40,000 for ABC Charity.”
Then, put the icing on your resume cake by writing a resume that’s visually attractive and digitally smart:
- Organize your accomplishments using bullet points–never paragraphs. This will make it easier for hiring managers to read (which means that it’s more likely they will).
- Include a strong objective statement at the top of your resume that says what job you want. Make it very clear for hiring managers (and recruiters).
- Pack your resume with pharmaceutical industry-related keywords as much as you can. Keywords help your resume get pulled in database searches for candidates.
- Before you send your resume to anyone, make sure to edit it yourself (don’t just let the computer spell-check it and call it good) and please include complete contact information: name, phone number, email, and address.
This is only the tip of the iceberg of all you can do to make your pharmaceutical sales resume stand out and get interviews for you. If you want more guidance and coaching to create a killer resume, see this resume writing kit. It includes my resume coaching and my free personal review of your completed resume.
Download this free app for your medical sales job search.
This free Apple or Android app from Career Confidential gives you
- A Medical Sales Resume That Gets You The Interview Every Time
- A Cover Letter That Grabs Attention From Employers
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- How To Get An Interview Fast With Any Medical Sales Company
- Job Interview Answers That Make You the “Wow” Candidate
- Additional FREE Job Search Tools, Tips, and Resources
You’ve researched jobs and companies, joined social media sites, and networked like crazy to find the medical sales job you want to get. You’ve created, edited, rewritten, and submitted the best cover letters and resumes you have ever made. Now, you must prepare for the scariest, most nerve-wracking, make-or-break step of the whole process—the job interview.
If you’ve made it this far, congratulations are in order. Now what?!
You want to look forward to your interview. You want to walk into the interview dripping with expertise so hiring managers know that you are perfect for this position. You want to wow them with your confidence, knowledge, experience, and cool-under-pressure poise. How are you going to do that?
Prepare, prepare, prepare, and prepare some more!
Knowing and rehearsing most of the possible interview questions and answers will get you on the way to acing your medical sales job interview.
Know why interviewers ask certain questions, what interviewers are looking to hear, what key talking points to use, what strategies you can use to answer tough questions, and what you should NEVER say in an interview.
Read Career Confidential’s blog series, How to Answer Interview Questions, for my detailed strategies to answer 101 of the toughest job interview questions.
Or, go to Amazon’s Kindle store to download the entire series as an ebook for only 99 cents: How to Answer Interview Questions eBook