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Become A Certified Technician

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Working As A Certified Technician

  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Processing Information
  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $30,410

    Average Salary

What Does A Certified Technician Do

Pharmacy technicians help pharmacists dispense prescription medication to customers or health professionals. They work in retail pharmacies and hospitals.

Duties

Pharmacy technicians typically do the following:

  • Collect information needed to fill a prescription from customers or health professionals
  • Measure amounts of medication for prescriptions
  • Package and label prescriptions
  • Organize inventory and alert pharmacists to any shortages of medications or supplies
  • Accept payment for prescriptions and process insurance claims
  • Enter customer or patient information, including any prescriptions taken, into a computer system
  • Answer phone calls from customers
  • Arrange for customers to speak with pharmacists if customers have questions about medications or health matters

Pharmacy technicians work under the supervision of pharmacists, who must review prescriptions before they are given to patients. In most states, technicians can compound or mix some medications and call physicians for prescription refill authorizations. Technicians also may need to operate automated dispensing equipment when filling prescription orders.

Pharmacy technicians working in hospitals and other medical facilities prepare a greater variety of medications, such as intravenous medications. They may make rounds in the hospital, giving medications to patients.

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How To Become A Certified Technician

Becoming a pharmacy technician usually requires earning a high school diploma or the equivalent. Pharmacy technicians typically learn through on-the-job training, or they may complete a postsecondary education program. Most states regulate pharmacy technicians, which is a process that may require passing an exam or completing a formal education or training program.

Education and Training

Many pharmacy technicians learn how to perform their duties through on-the-job training. These programs vary in length and subject matter according to the employer’s requirements.

Other pharmacy technicians enter the occupation after completing postsecondary education programs in pharmacy technology. These programs are usually offered by vocational schools or community colleges. Most programs award a certificate after 1 year or less, although some programs last longer and lead to an associate’s degree. They cover a variety of subjects, such as arithmetic used in pharmacies, recordkeeping, ways of dispensing medications, and pharmacy law and ethics. Technicians also learn the names, uses, and doses of medications. Most programs also include clinical experience opportunities, in which students gain hands-on experience in a pharmacy.

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) accredits pharmacy technician programs that include at least 600 hours of instruction over a minimum of 15 weeks. In 2015, there were 286 fully accredited programs, including a few in retail drugstore chains.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Most states regulate pharmacy technicians in some way. Consult state Boards of Pharmacy for particular regulations. Requirements for pharmacy technicians in the states that regulate them typically include some or all of the following:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Formal education or training program
  • Exam
  • Fees
  • Continuing education
  • Criminal background check

Some states and employers require pharmacy technicians to be certified. Even where it is not required, certification may make it easier to get a job. Many employers will pay for their pharmacy technicians to take the certification exam.

Two organizations offer certification. The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) certification requires a high school diploma and the passing of an exam. Applicants for the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) certification must be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma, and have completed a training program or have 1 year of work experience. Technicians must recertify every 2 years by completing 20 hours of continuing education courses.

Important Qualities

Customer-service skills. Pharmacy technicians spend much of their time interacting with customers, so being helpful and polite is required of pharmacy technicians in a retail setting.

Detail oriented. Serious health problems can result from mistakes in filling prescriptions. Although the pharmacist is responsible for ensuring the safety of all medications dispensed, pharmacy technicians should pay attention to detail so that complications are avoided.

Listening skills. Pharmacy technicians must communicate clearly with pharmacists and doctors when taking prescription orders. When speaking with customers, technicians must listen carefully to understand customers’ needs and determine if they need to speak with a pharmacist.

Math skills. Pharmacy technicians need to have an understanding of the math concepts used in pharmacies when counting pills and compounding medications.

Organizational skills. Working as a pharmacy technician involves balancing a variety of responsibilities. Pharmacy technicians need good organizational skills to complete the work delegated by pharmacists while at the same time providing service to customers or patients.

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Certified Technician jobs

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Certified Technician Career Paths

Certified Technician
Service Manager Operations Manager General Manager
Account Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Operations Manager General Manager
Area Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Master Technician Service Manager Operations Manager
Branch Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Technician Maintenance Manager Operations Manager
Business Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Technician Production Supervisor Operations Manager
Chief Operating Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Service Technician Service Manager General Manager
District Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Driver Delivery Driver Account Manager
District Sales Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Systems Administrator
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Service Manager General Manager
Operations Director
9 Yearsyrs
Service Technician Field Service Technician Service Manager
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Information Technology Manager Operations Manager
President Of Operations
11 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Project Manager General Manager
President/Chief Executive Officer
10 Yearsyrs
Lead Technician Project Leader Business Analyst
Product Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Automotive Technician Technician Project Manager
Program Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Certified Pharmacist Technician Licensed Practical Nurse Quality Assurance
Quality Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Master Technician Shop Foreman Service Manager
Regional Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Driver Repair Technician Manufacturing Technician
Research And Development Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Lead Technician Project Manager Program Manager
Senior Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Certified Pharmacist Technician Registered Nurse Case Manager
Service Director
9 Yearsyrs
Automotive Technician Mechanic Forklift Operator
Warehouse Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Certified Technician Demographics

Gender

Male

72.4%

Female

26.2%

Unknown

1.4%
Ethnicity

White

78.4%

Hispanic or Latino

11.9%

Asian

7.4%

Unknown

1.6%

Black or African American

0.6%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

51.5%

Urdu

5.1%

Arabic

5.1%

Hindi

4.0%

Chinese

4.0%

Mandarin

3.0%

French

3.0%

Russian

3.0%

Cantonese

3.0%

German

3.0%

Japanese

3.0%

Hmong

2.0%

Armenian

2.0%

Carrier

2.0%

Vietnamese

1.0%

Bosnian

1.0%

Lithuanian

1.0%

Filipino

1.0%

Albanian

1.0%

Greek

1.0%
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Certified Technician Education

Schools

Universal Technical Institute

21.4%

University of Phoenix

19.8%

Northern Virginia Community College

7.1%

Southern Illinois University Carbondale

3.8%

Lincoln Technical Institute

3.8%

Pennsylvania State University

3.3%

University of Northwestern Ohio

3.3%

University of Louisville

3.3%

Southern New Hampshire University

3.3%

Remington College

3.3%

Hudson Valley Community College

2.7%

Michigan State University

2.7%

NASCAR Technical Institute

2.7%

University of Arkansas at Little Rock

2.7%

Middle Tennessee State University

2.7%

Temple University

2.7%

Rochester Institute of Technology

2.7%

Houston Community College

2.7%

The Academy

2.7%

Kent State University

2.7%
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Majors

Automotive Technology

16.2%

Business

15.5%

Computer Science

7.1%

Information Technology

6.5%

Computer Information Systems

5.5%

Criminal Justice

4.9%

Electrical Engineering

4.7%

Nursing

4.6%

General Studies

3.6%

Computer Networking

3.2%

Pharmacy

3.1%

Psychology

3.0%

Health Care Administration

3.0%

Medical Technician

3.0%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.9%

Education

2.8%

Communication

2.8%

Liberal Arts

2.6%

Biology

2.6%

Medical Assisting Services

2.6%
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Degrees

Other

36.2%

Bachelors

29.1%

Associate

18.4%

Certificate

7.0%

Masters

5.9%

Diploma

2.7%

Doctorate

0.6%

License

0.3%
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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Certified Technician Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Certified Neurophysiologic Monitoring Technologist Texas Intraoperative Monitoring, Inc. Dallas, TX Nov 28, 2016 $89,250
Certified Neurophysiologic Monitoring Technologist Texas Intraoperative Monitoring, Inc. Dallas, TX May 26, 2015 $85,000
Certified Neurophysiologic Intraoperative Monitoring Technologist Texas Intraoperative Monitoring Inc. Dallas, TX Jan 15, 2016 $85,000
Certified Neurophysiologic Monitoring Technologist Texas Intraoperative Monitoring, Inc. Dallas, TX Jun 20, 2013 $85,000
Certified Technologist, Blood Bank University Hospitals of Cleveland Cleveland, OH Jul 01, 2011 $44,720
Certified Technologist, Core Lab University Hospitals of Cleveland Cleveland, OH Jul 01, 2011 $44,720
Certified Technologist University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Little Rock, AR Dec 15, 2014 $41,808

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Top Skills for A Certified Technician

CustomerServiceSkillsHardwareIssuesServiceDepartmentTechnicalIssuesCustomerVehiclesSafetyApplePatientCareComputerDiagnosticsDiagnosisEngineMacTroubleshootOilChangesTechnicalSupportCustomerSatisfactionLaptopsPreventativeMaintenanceDesktopSetup

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Top Certified Technician Skills

  1. Customer Service Skills
  2. Hardware Issues
  3. Service Department
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Demonstrated excellent customer service skills, strong communication skills, and problem-solving abilities.
  • Repaired computer software and hardware issues while providing industry leading customer service.
  • Served as a master technician in a demanding service department.
  • Maintained a server network to perform the classes without any technical issues.
  • Ordered parts in a timely manner to complete repairs on customer vehicles.

Top Certified Technician Employers

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