/ Asked by Jane
I have been applying to jobs in the pharmaceutical industry with little luck - I have received rejections from all the companies I have applied to. I have both lab experience as well as multiple internship experiences under my belt, so it makes me believe that my GPA, which is around a 3.3, is what is hurting my application. What GPAs do companies generally look for and how can I prove that my GPA being low does not reflect my ability to work?
Answered by Nell, Hiring Expert at Pitney Bowes, on Thursday, October 9, 2014
First of all, a 3.3 in my opinion, is a great GPA! Second of all, you can always take your GPA off your resume. I doubt that your GPA is the problem. It could be a number of things. However my hunch is that you may not be applying to enough positions. You should be applying to 30 jobs a day. I would also recommend that you consider applying to jobs that may not be your first choice. For example, if your goal is to go into Pharmaceutical R and D, perhaps apply for some jobs as a pharmaceutical technician at a pharmacy. Sometimes just a year or two of related work experience can really help you out. I wish you the best of luck!
Answered by Dana, Hiring Expert at ManpowerGroup, on Thursday, October 9, 2014
Is it absolutely necessary to include your GPA? That would be my first recommendation. If someone asks for a copy of your diploma or transcript, and your GPA at a later date, I think that’s perfectly acceptable. But you don’t need to include this on your resume up front, perhaps.

Do you have any experience with the pharmaceutical industry, outside of your formal education and your college internships? This might be a situation in which you need to rethink your strategy, and not count on landing your ideal job title right away.

I agree with an earlier respondent who mentioned gaining some on-the-job experience might help you a great deal! Starting out as a pharm tech (or lab tech in a related industry) might make you more marketable, and help you move closer to your target position.

I would also recommend partnering with staffing companies (like Manpower or Experis) to help find contract roles, too. Many staffing companies place professionals from a variety of scientific backgrounds, and this could help you get in the door somewhere, and lead to a permanent position. Lots of companies and institutions conduct their hiring this way, and do not even advertise openings (they leave it up to placement firms and talent specialists to handle this for them). So be sure to expand your search to include not only job postings, but also active networking with talent solutions companies and their recruiters.

Best of luck to you!
Answered by Sharon, Hiring Expert at Mutual of Omaha, on Monday, October 27, 2014
When apply for any position, you are typically not required to disclose your GPA unless it is a minimum job requirement. With that being said, omit your GPA from your resume and don't list it on your application unless the company's applicant tracking system (ATS) has it as a required field. GPA requirements vary by companies and industries. If a company is using it as a criteria, it should be advertised in the posting.
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