Are you looking to become a pharmacy tech but not sure whether the career is worth it?
As the job market becomes more crowded and competitive, it’s no longer just enough to choose a career because of its glamor, fame or reputation. You have to consider your interests, level of training required, availability of jobs, work-life balance, and other factors.
So, what benefits will your reap from becoming a pharmacy tech?
Keep reading to find out!
1. An Opportunity to Help People
Do you enjoy helping other people? Are you passionate about public health?
If you answered yes to these questions, pursuing a career as a pharmacy tech will give you a good opportunity to fulfill the joys and passions of your heart.
You see, pharmacy techs do more than filling prescriptions, keeping drug inventories, and accepting payments for the dispensed medication. They also interact with patients and their families, answering various drug-related questions. In some settings, pharmacy techs take on more patient-centered tasks, such as giving flu shots.
At the end of every workday, you’ll be deeply satisfied with your role knowing you’re making a difference, however little, in the lives of people who need medication.
2. Strong Job Demand
Even though unemployment rates are low, getting a job quickly remains a challenge for most job seekers. In fact, according to Monster, an occupational resources site, it takes about 12 weeks to land a new job.
Do you want to wait for that long before getting hired?
The good news is when you elect to become a pharmacy technician, the likelihood of finding a job within a couple of weeks is high, and here is why.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that the employment of pharmacy technicians will increase by 12 percent from now through 2026. For comparison, the average percentage change in employment for all occupations through the same period is 7 percent!
And what’s driving this strong job demand?
As the boomer generation enters old age, the number of people needing prescription medications is going to keep rising. More pharmacies will open up to meet this demand, creating new openings for pharmacy techs.
So if you want a career that won’t have you sending applications to numerous employers and waiting for weeks on end before hearing back, become a pharmacy tech!
3. Easy and Quick Qualification
Let’s admit it: were it not for the several years it takes to become a physician, most of us would be physicians and surgeons.
Indeed, the most popular professions in the healthcare industry require rigorous training and aspirants must obtaining a professional license before joining the practice. Aspiring pharmacy techs, though, don’t have to study for several years to be ready for employment.
For starters, it’s possible to find employment with just a high school diploma. If you follow this path, you’ll then undergo extensive on-the-job training before your employer can let you perform day to day roles without direct supervision of a pharmacist.
However, as the profession gets more competitive, most employers are starting to look beyond high school diplomas. To stand out from the crowd, it’s advisable to pursue a pharmacy technician certificate program or better yet, an associate degree. This means the longest it can take you to become a properly trained pharmacy tech is just two years!
When choosing a program, ensure it is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. While at it, be sure to learn more about where to find the best pharmacy technician training.
Although online learning is becoming more popular by the day, not many healthcare courses give you the option of taking online classes.
In pharmacy technician training, however, you can pursue an online program. You won’t waste time in commutes and it’s possible to have a job as you study.
5. Competitive Salary
Let’s talk about the money!
Even though an increasing number of job seekers are starting to prioritize work-life balance over salary when looking for a new job, money still plays a decisive factor.
So, how much do pharmacy techs take home?
The mean annual wage is $33, 060, and the best paid earn $46, 980. Given that the average annual salary for associate degree holders with two to four years of experience is $32, 700, we can conclude that pharmacy techs earn a competitive wage.
6. Work in Diverse Settings
As a pharmacy technician, you can be hired by hospitals, physician’s offices with in-house pharmacies, retail pharmaceutical chains, community clinics and mail-order pharmacies. This diversity gives you the power to work in an environment that best suits you.
For example, if you prefer working behinds the scenes, you can focus on getting hired by a mail-order pharmacy. Here, there’s no face to face interaction with customers. You’ll take prescriptions orders over the phone or online and then mail them to buyers.
Or if you really want to be at the heart of patient care, you can find employment in a hospital pharmacy.
7. Career Portability
Did you know the average person changes jobs 10-15 times?
This means you likely won’t stay in your first job for longer than 3 years. Perhaps you’ll want to switch to another work setting or you could move to another state with higher salaries for pharmacy techs.
But how easy will it be to move to another state and keep pursuing your career?
Well, as a pharmacy tech, you can find employment in another state without undergoing any further licensing or registration. Most states require pharmacy tech to hold to obtain certification from the Pharmacy Technician Board. As long you hold the certification, you’re good to work in another state.
Becoming a Pharmacy Tech: You’ll Enjoy a Range of Benefits
Evidently, there’s no shortage of reasons to consider becoming a pharmacy tech.
From getting the opportunity to make a difference in patient care to fast certification, a competitive salary and the ability to work in diverse settings, this career will enrich your personal and professional life in multiple ways.
Still not sure whether this is the career for you? Here is how to find a career you’re passionate about.