As a mobile optometrist for a high street optical business, driving up to 6 hours in a day wasn’t unusual for Megan, and that didn’t leave a lot of time for a relaxing personal life.
Megan says, “There were a number of reasons why I decided to look for a different role, but one of the main ones was the fact that being a mobile optometrist meant I saw patients only once and I wasn’t able to build a rapport with them.”
Developing professionally is also very important to Megan, and she felt frustrated at the limited opportunities on offer. “Although I’d been told that I’d have the opportunity to learn, it just didn’t materialise. After a while I knew I’d have to look for a role elsewhere.”
One of the companies Megan considered was Optical Express. She admits that she was surprised by all that was on offer for optometrists, and by how straightforward the application process was.
“My interview wasn’t scary at all – the discussion around optical knowledge was quite relaxed and the people I met were very friendly. They were upfront about exactly what I could expect. Most of all, I was impressed by the focus on optometrist training.”
Megan was delighted to be offered a role in an optical store only a 20 minute drive from her home, and started with Optical Express in February 2018. “Working in one place as the resident optometrist, being part of a small, very supportive team and being able to get to know my patients really well are just some of the things I love about my job!” she smiles. “If patients have any questions at all they can call me. I feel that’s just as important for me as it is for them.”
While in her previous role, Megan had put herself through the Independent Prescribing (IP) qualification, even though it was difficult for her to study because of the high number of miles she travelled each week. Once qualified, though, she didn’t feel confident enough to prescribe due to the lack of support from her employer at the time.
She thinks it’s fantastic that every Optical Express optometrist has the opportunity to gain the IP qualification through its partnership with Glasgow Caledonian University, with the costs covered by the business. Megan says. “Although I was already qualified when I joined, the support I’ve had from people across Optical Express means that my confidence regarding IP has improved very quickly. I’ve progressed so much.”
Working for Optical Express has given Megan a better work/life balance with much more time at home. What other differences has she noticed?
“This is the first business I’ve worked for which has a refractive element, meaning that there’s much more opportunity for optometrists who want to progress their career. I’ve already attended a refractive observation day in Glasgow and was impressed – the OCT equipment is state of the art and it’s great to have the option to do more on the refractive side of things.”
And how would Megan rate her experience so far at Optical Express? “I’d give it a mark of 100%! The company’s delivered on every promise it’s made and I’m really looking forward to taking up some of the development opportunities on offer to its optometrists.”
If you are interested in joining Optical Express and gaining access to our industry leading training, then contact our Recruitment team who’ll be happy to let you know what opportunities we have across the UK and what other development opportunities we can offer you. You can contact us at email@example.com or 01236 795146.