Recruiting foundation trainee pharmacists in 2024 (2025 intake)
NHS England has asked us to share the following important information on the recruitment of foundation trainee pharmacists in 2024 (2025 intake) with pharmacy owners.
Significant changes have been implemented for the 2025 foundation training year in line with the Initial Education and Training of Pharmacists reform programme required by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).
This means that recruiting via the National Recruitment Scheme (Oriel) will be the only route to employing a foundation trainee pharmacist for the 2025-26 foundation training year.
Employer registration for the 2025-26 foundation training year via Oriel is now open. Registration closes at 23:59 on 1st March 2024
Signing up to Oriel
- First go to the NHS England Employer Information webpage for more information and guidance.
- Before signing up, read the Employer Handbook and the Terms of Participation of the National Recruitment Scheme. You will be asked to sign up to the NHS England Terms of Participation and adhere to the Health Education England Quality Framework as part of the registration process.
- Complete an online registration form for each programme you wish to include in Oriel and provide employer programme information.
Help and advice
NHS England has developed a short video to support employers with registering to participate in the National Recruitment Scheme. This is available to watch from the Employer Registration page.
You can update your knowledge of Oriel by reading the Employer Handbook. This contains step-by-step guidance on completing your employer programme submission form(s), a recruitment timeline and regional contact support details.
You may find it helpful to see information submitted by employers in 2023 by viewing the ‘Pharmacy Employers and Programme Information’ from the 2023 document available on the Oriel Employer Information page.
The National Recruitment Scheme has been recruiting foundation trainee pharmacists since 2017 and it is commonly known as Oriel, which is the name of the IT platform used to recruit foundation trainee pharmacists into training posts.
This is the same platform that is used in the recruitment of trainee dentists, doctors and healthcare scientists. Oriel allows training sites across England to advertise the unique qualities of their training programme(s) to attract applicants to preference them as part of their application.
Applicants are required to complete one application form for foundation training and to preference the foundation training programmes they wish to be considered for, as part of the recruitment process.
The process is managed centrally by NHS England, freeing up employers from having to undertake their own recruitment and selection processes.
About the GPhC Initial Education and Training of Pharmacists (IETP) Reforms
To find out more about the IETP reforms and how the foundation training year is changing, please visit the Implementing the Foundation Pharmacist Training Year page.