Discount Drug Stores (DDS) has partnered with Gateway Training Academy, offering franchise partners greater opportunities to upskill staff and improve workplace efficiencies.
One of the first courses open for enrolment is a Certificate III in Community Pharmacy, which qualifies for a government wage subsidy of up to $28,000 per eligible staff member when signing up before 31 March.
The subsidised training on offer will support franchise partners overcome some of the industry-wide workforce challenges experienced post-pandemic by investing in upskilling and career development opportunities for staff.
Head of DDS, Patrick Stoll, said: “After years of pandemic related disruption to pharmacies nationwide, Discount Drug Stores is committed to supporting its teams through the recovery period, and into the future, by offering ongoing training opportunities for staff.
“Our partnership with Gateway Training Academy will not only support the DDS network to upskill, retain and recruit new staff through career progression opportunities, but also improve overall workplace efficiencies and operations by increasing dispensary and retail skills among team members.
“The wage subsidy, which will cover up to $28,000 per eligible staff member over the 12-month enrolment period, offers a huge incentive for franchise owners to take advantage of the first course on offer through the partnership.”
The Certificate III in Community Pharmacy is said to be a comprehensive training program that educates entry-level staff on industry protocols, standards for supplying scheduled medicines, application of protocols, pharmacy product and health information, identification of customer needs and customer service skills.
Eatons Hill DDS Manager, Sarah Shipley, said: “The course is a great opportunity for us to improve workflow across the store and means our dispensary team will have more support from staff members who weren’t previously qualified to work on the back counter.
“We’ve put two of our staff members forward to participate in the program so far and are open to offering it to others in the future too. It’s a great offer for business owners to provide professional development to their teams and make savings on wages at the same time.”
DDS’ partnership with Gateway Training Academy is just one of many incentives planned to support franchise partners’ growth this year, with DDS’ Dispensary Excellence Program, which provides pharmacy teams with tools to improve dispensary workflow efficiencies, kicking off later in the year.