Get matched with great locum shifts in pharmacies & opticians

Our London pharmacies and opticians are looking for pharmacists, optometrists and more

Smarter shift notifications

Only receive notifications for shifts that match your preferences

Detailed store profiles

See everything you need to know before accepting shifts

Simpler invoicing

Invoices sent automatically after shifts and we send reminders to avoid late payments

Our locum shifts

Pharmacy shifts

  • Pharmacist
  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Accuracy Checking Pharmacy Technician
  • Pre-registration Pharmacist
Find pharmacy shifts

Optometry shifts

  • Optometrist
  • Pre-registration Optometrist
  • Dispensing Optician
  • Contact Lens Dispensing Optician
Find optometry shifts

Are you looking for locums for your store?

We cover a variety of different roles and can help you find locums for short-term or long-term cover

Sign up your store

Interested? Here's how it works

1

Register online

Share your basic information and tell us your shift preferences (travel time, rate etc.)

2

Complete profile

Send us key documents to verify your identity and ability to locum

3

Start working

Once verified, receive shift notifications based on your preferences

Get started
Schedule

Locum FAQs


Signing up

Does it cost anything to sign up?

No. It’s free to have a profile with us and we won’t take any commission from your pay.

Got any more questions before signing up?

You can email all questions to support@zenlocum.com and we’ll be in touch.


Documents

What do I need to create a profile with you?

We’ll need evidence of your identity, right to work, CV and qualifications. In addition, we’ll need an enhanced or standard DBS certificate, depending on your role, and two recent professional references.

I don’t have my documents right now. Can I still sign up?

Yes! You can sign up now and let us know what work you’re looking for. You can return at any time to finish your profile and start booking shifts.

Why do I need a DBS?

It is becoming more common that a DBS is an essential requirement for working as a locum. You cannot work with some stores if you do not have an Enhanced DBS.

An Enhanced DBS is required as you may have access to vulnerable adults and children whilst working as a locum.

Can you help me apply for a DBS?

Yes! If you need a DBS or if your DBS has expired we can apply for one on your behalf. The cost of an Enhanced DBS is £47.20 and a Standard DBS is £30.20. You can let us know you are interested in applying for a DBS on the app and we will be in touch with further details.

I don’t have recent references, can I still sign up?

Yes! Once you've uploaded your CV, we'll be able to look at your experience, and help you figure out who would be best placed to act as your referees.


Shifts

What areas do you cover?

We work with stores across Greater London.

What rates do you offer?

The rates are set by the stores and you will only see shifts that are in line with your rate preferences.

Additionally, if you call or email us about a shift you are interested in we are sometimes able to negotiate on your behalf.

How will I be paid after I’ve worked?

You can submit an invoice to the store after you’ve completed the shift directly via the app. Payment is made directly to you and we ask stores that all invoices are paid within 4 weeks.

When will I start receiving shifts?

As soon as you’ve completed your profile with us, you’ll start receiving shift notifications. If you have all your documents ready to go, you could start receiving shifts as soon as tomorrow!


General

How am I matched with shifts?

You’ll receive push notifications on the app when we have available shifts that are within your travel, pay and availability preferences. With Zen Locum, you don’t need to worry about missing a great shift or waste time searching through long emails or job posts.

What information will I be able to see before accepting shifts?

When you receive a shift notification, you’ll also be able to see relevant information about that shift to help you decide whether to accept the booking. For example, the system the store uses, lunch break, and more.

What information will stores be able to see on my profile?

Your profile includes your picture and a brief summary of your experience and qualifications.

How is Zen Locum different to a traditional agency?

Zen Locum is an online platform that directly connects locums to stores in their area. Agencies are a slow and expensive middleman between stores and locums. We run more of the process online making it easier and quicker to find, view and accept shifts.


Questions for Intercom

Can I work as a pharmacist?

To work as a Pharmacist in the UK you will need to be GPhC registered, this is a legal requirement. If you qualified overseas and do not have a registration number, please contact the GPhC directly to discuss obtaining your registration number.

Can I work as an optometrist?

To work as an Optometrist in the UK you will need to be GOC registered, this is a legal requirement. If you qualified overseas and do not have a registration number, please contact the GOC directly to discuss obtaining your registration number.

What is a GPhC registration number?

A GPhC number is a legal requirement for pharmacy professionals in the UK and ensures that you have met the standards set by the General Pharmaceutical Council. If you qualified overseas and do not have a registration number, please contact the GPhC directly to discuss obtaining your registration number.

What is a GOC registration number?

A GOC number is a legal requirement for optometry professionals in the UK and ensures that you have met the standards set by the General Optical Council. If you qualified overseas and do not have a registration number, please contact the GOC directly to discuss obtaining your registration number.

How does the locum app work?

The Zen Locum app smartly connects locums to stores in their area looking for staff!

By downloading the Zen Locum app, sharing some basic information and telling us your preferences (availability, travel times, rate etc.) you will start receiving personalised shift notifications.

You can then review the shift details such as travel times, lunch break and opening hours, and then instantly book yourself in!

It’s important to understand that you can’t browse for shifts on the app, we don’t think this is a good use of your time! Instead we do the hard work and filter the shifts we have available based on your preferences and show you those.

How do I receive shift requests?

You will receive personalised notifications via the Zen Locum app - these are based on your preferences:

  • Standard and emergency rate
  • Travel preferences
  • How far you’re willing to travel
  • Your availability

You can update these at any time in the app, under ‘More’ and then ‘Preferences’.

Once you have received a shift notification, you can click on it to see more details such as pay, travel times, lunch break info and parking info.

You can also accept shifts instantly, regardless of whether you have uploaded your documents yet! But please note you will be required to provide your documents at least 3 days before the shift.

How do I update my availability?

In the Zen Locum app, there is a ‘Calendar’ section along the bottom of the home screen. You can tap on/off the days that you are available to work:

  • Available = White
  • Unavailable = Grey
  • Zen Locum shift = Purple

You can update your general weekly availability under the ‘Usual availability’ tab across the top of the calendar section - here you can update the usual days you are available, and the times too!

How do I update my locum profile?

The easiest way to update your profile is in the Zen Locum app.

Click the ‘More’ tab on the right-hand side, and click ‘Profile’ at the top of the screen.

Here you can update:

  • About you bio
  • Years of experience
  • Systems used
  • Accreditations
  • Work experience

It’s really important that you keep your locum profile updated, as your profile will appear higher up to stores and you are more likely to be requested.

How do I change my notifications settings?

The easiest way to update your notification settings is in the Zen Locum app.

Click the ‘More’ tab on the right-hand side, and click ‘Notifications’ halfway down the screen.

Here you can update your notifications for both:

  • App push notifications (general, shift requests and shift reminders)
  • Email notifications (general, shift requests and shift reminders)
What documents do I need to upload?

There are various legal documents we need to see before you can attend any shifts. You will have received an email from us with a list of documents to upload:

Pharmacist / Pharmacy Technician / Optometrist / Dispensing Optician

  • Indemnity insurance
  • Photo of your BRP/ passport photo page
  • Selfie of you holding up your BRP/ passport photo page
  • Full copy of your green paper Enhanced DBS
  • CV
  • 2x professional references

Pharmacy Dispenser / Optical Assistant

  • Copy of your NVQ Level 2 or Equivalent certificate
  • Photo of your BRP/ passport photo page
  • Selfie of you holding up your BRP/ passport photo page
  • Full copy of your green paper Standard DBS
  • CV
  • 2x professional references

Please ensure that these are clear colour copies when you upload these on the app so a member of our team can get these verified, and your profile completed ASAP.

If you have any questions about these documents or need help with anything please drop us an email at support@zenlocum.com.

Why do I need a DBS?

It is becoming more common that a DBS is an essential requirement for working as a locum. You cannot work with some stores if you do not have an Enhanced DBS.

An Enhanced DBS is required as you may have access to vulnerable adults and children whilst working as a locum.

Can you help me apply for a DBS?

Yes! If you need a DBS or if your DBS has expired we can apply for one on your behalf. The cost of an Enhanced DBS is £47.20 and a Standard DBS is £30.20. You can let us know you are interested in applying for a DBS on the app and we will be in touch with further details.

To process your DBS you'll need to send us two documents as proof of your address.

How long does it take to get a DBS?

Once we receive your address documents you'll receive a link to complete the DBS application with uCheck. Once submitted, the DBS can take anywhere between 2 days to 2 weeks to process.

How much does a DBS cost?

An enhanced DBS check costs £47.20 upfront and then an annual payment of £13 per year to keep it valid on the DBS Update Service.

A standard DBS costs £30.20 upfront and then an annual payment of £13 per year to keep it valid on the DBS Update Service.

What is the DBS Update Service?

The DBS Update Service allows applicants to keep their DBS certificates up to date and employers to check a DBS certificate.

Registration for the DBS Update Service costs £13 per year. If you wish to use it, you must register for the Update Service within 30 days of your DBS certificate being issued.

The online update service makes sure that your DBS is up to date and means employers can quickly verify that no changes have happened since the issue date. You will need to keep a hold of your original paper copy even while on the update service.

You can register for the DBS Update Service online.

If you are planning on locuming long term we would highly recommend using the update service, as it will save you having to re-apply for a DBS once a year has passed.

Additionally, some stores do require that you are on the update service to work with them.

What if my DBS is taking longer than 2 weeks?

Occasionally DBS checks can take longer than 2 weeks as they need to be checked by your local police station. We can look into the status of your DBS to see what stage it's at. Or if you'd like to check yourself, input your DBS form reference number on the Disclosure and Barring Service Tracking Service. If we applied for a DBS on your behalf just get in touch and we can share your reference number.

I am an EU citizen, what additional documents do I need?

As an EU citizen, there is one additional document we need in addition to your EU passport and passport selfie to prove your right to work in the UK.

You will need to provide your:

Government-issued share code (9 digit code made up of numbers and letters)

This will indicate to us whether you have settled or pre-settled status in the UK and is essential to be able to work with us.

To generate your share code, click here.

How do I prove my Right To Work in the UK?

To prove your right to work in the UK, there are various documents we can accept.

You will need to provide one of the three options:

  • Picture of UK passport & selfie with UK passport
  • Picture of EU passport, selfie with EU passport and government issues share code (generate share code)
  • Picture of Biometric residence permit (BRP) & selfie with Biometric residence permit (BRP)

If you do not have a passport we can accept a birth or adoption certificate issued in the UK, Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or Ireland, together with an official document with your permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a government agency or a previous employer.

Please ensure you provide clear colour copy photos of your right to work when you upload your documents.

One of my documents is out of date - what should I do?

You will need to renew the document with the relevant provider. It’s essential your insurance and DBS are in date to be able to continue working as a pharmacist or optometrist.

If your DBS is out of date, please get in contact with us and we can apply for a new DBS on your behalf (both enhanced and standard).

Please email the updated copy of your document to support@zenlocum.com and we will update your locum profile accordingly.

What do I do if I'm late or absent?

Let us know as soon as you can't make it to work or if you're running late by phoning 020 3868 5751.

If it is before 8am or after 6pm, or you are unable to get through to someone, please email us at support@zenlocum.com.

Please try to avoid phoning or emailing the direct number or addresses you have for team members as it’s much easier to inform stores of absentees and late arrival if all the information comes via our central line and inbox.

What if I have to cancel a booking?

If for some reason you have to cancel a shift you have booked in, you must inform us as soon as possible as to which shift and reason for cancellation.

Please call us on 020 3868 5751 or email us at support@zenlocum.com.

Please do remember cancelling a shift means that we have to urgently find a replacement, this can be difficult and puts a lot of pressure on the team. Additionally, we do ask that you also find a replacement for last minute shift cancellations. So please do consider your reasoning before cancelling a shift.

Why has my shift been cancelled?

Occasionally stores may have to cancel a shift you have booked in, usually, this is because they have already filled it internally or no longer require the cover.

We will notify you as soon as possible via email if your shift has been cancelled, it will also be removed from your confirmed shifts in the Zen Locum App.

We understand it can be difficult and frustrating when a shift is cancelled, but we will always do our best to find an alternative shift for you instead!

I need help obtaining a smart card

Send us an email detailing your smart card query to support@zenlocum.com and we can send you specific instructions on how to proceed.

It’s important to be aware that we can only help you obtain a smart card once you have a locum shift booked in with us, as we need proof of your booking to send to your local Residents Associate! If you also require SCR access, please also email your certificate for Summary Care Records.

How can I delete my profile or personal information?

To request to delete your profile or personal information, please email support@zenlocum.com including the reason why. We will then let you know once we have deleted your account.

I've moved house. How do I let you know my new address?

Either call in on 020 3514 5415 and speak to one of our staff members or email us at support@zenlocum.com, we can then update your profile accordingly.

It’s really important we have your correct home address so that we can send you relevant shift notifications!

How do I invoice a store?

The Zen Locum app auto-generates invoices using the information from your booking. You are responsible for sending your invoices. Once you’ve completed a shift, go to ‘Shifts’ > ‘Past’ > ‘Invoices’, here you can review the invoice and then press ‘Send’ to email the store directly a copy of your invoice.

When will I receive payment for my shifts?

We encourage stores to make prompt payments, however some stores only process invoices once a month with payroll. Most stores that we work with make their payments within 2 - 4 weeks of a shift, and some even sooner!

Why have I not been paid for my shift?

Most of our stores pay within 2-4 weeks of your shift. Please only reach out to us regarding late payments if it has been more than 4 weeks since you worked.

If you have still not received payment after 4 weeks, please email us at support@zenlocum.com with the details of the shift and the amount owed. We will contact the store directly to get you an update on when you will be paid.

How do I update my bank details?

In the Zen Locum App, click on the ‘More’ button and then into ‘Payment details’.

Here you need to enter:

  • Name on account
  • Account number
  • Sort code
  • Building society roll number (if you have one)

It’s essential these bank details are entered correctly.

How do I claim travel expenses?

When a shift includes expenses such as mileage, you can add the expenses to the invoice prepared by the Zen Locum if agreed with the store during the booking process. In the app tap “Invoices” and then “Edit” by the relevant shift. You can then add the expense amount & the expense reason to update your invoice. This invoice can then be sent to the store directly via the app.

The expenses must have been pre-approved at the time of the booking or by the Store Manager.

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