Pharmacy Technician Salary in 2021 (In-Depth Details)

Pharmacy TechnicianHow much you will make as a Pharmacy Technician depends on multiple factors, including experience, place of employment, educational background, PTCB certification, the industry you are placed in and your specific job duties. So whether you are a high school student contemplating becoming a pharmacy technician or a hardworking pharmacy tech on job, anticipating your next salary hike, you will find valuable information (September 2021 updated) on this page that will give you an in-depth insight about a Pharmacy Technician's latest salary, factoring the location of work, type of employer and employment outlook, giving you some food for thought and helping you learn all that you need to know about how much a Pharmacy Technician makes.


Table Of Contents




Number of Pharmacy Technicians Currently Employed in the US

According to BLS as on May 2020 there were 415,310 pharmacy technicians working across the nation, out of which 279,806 were PTCB certified. As PTCB certified pharmacy technicians are being preferred by employers, each year more number of pharmacy technicians are getting themselves PTCB certified.

415,310



Starting Salary

When you start your career as a pharmacy technician, you can expect to earn a starting salary of $25,400. You can expect to start with a higher salary if you get your training at an accredited pharmacy technician school. Entry level pharmacy technicians are in demand in hospital and retail pharmacies. Although the starting salary of a pharmacy technician is lower than that of any other health care careers, you can use the experience you get as an entry level pharmacy technician to pursue pharmacy or an advance specialization in pharmacy technology.

Starting Salary
$25,400


Average Salary

According to U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics on an average a Pharmacy technician, makes $36,450 annually and the average wage per hour was estimated to be $17.52. While the best paid earned $47,620 the lowest earned $30,370 annually.

Hourly: A pharmacy technician earns an average hourly wage of $17.52. Most pharmacy technicians earning this wage are on part-time jobs and with not many years of experience. You may earn slightly more, working in a Mail Order Pharmacy and Long-Term Care. While working in California can get you the highest hourly wage of $22.89, working in Kentucky you will get only a meagre $14.60 paid per hour.

Monthly: As a pharmacy technician in the U.S., you can expect to earn a monthly average salary of $3,040. While the highest is at $3,970 in California, the lowest is at $2,530 in Kentucky.

Annual: At $36,450, the average annual salary a pharmacy technician earns is lower than that of other health care careers. If you are employed full-time your annual salary will be higher than a pharmacy tech who is working part-time, the reason being, benefits and allowances will add up to your annual salary, which a part-time employee may not enjoy. Working full time in the federal government or outpatient care center in San Francisco or even in the state of California, well, you could be earning the highest pharmacy technician salary, annually!

Type Salary
Hourly Wage $17.52
Monthly Salary $3,040
Annual Salary $36,450
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020


Certified Pharmacy Technician

Some states in the nation require Pharmacy technicians to be certified. Even in states that do not mandate certification, employment opportunities get better with certification. If you get yourself a PTCB certification not only will you better your job prospects, you can even expect to earn a higher salary than the national annual average. There are currently 279,806 PTCB certified pharmacy technicians active across the country. As a Certified pharmacy technician you can expect to earn an average annual salary of $45,580.



Your Salary Will Grow With Experience

In May 2020, BLS listed yearly salaries for pharmacy technicians based on the number of years of experience they possessed. This source reported that starting level pharmacy technicians made yearly earnings of $25,400. Salaries rose to $29,090 with 1-4 years of experience, $35,100 with 5-9 years of experience, $41,660 with 10-19 years of experience and $50,430 with over 20 years of experience.

Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Less than 1 year (Starting)$12.21 $2,120 $25,400
1-4 years$13.99 $2,420 $29,090
5-9 years$16.88 $2,930 $35,100
10-19 years$20.03 $3,470 $41,660
20 years or more$24.25 $4,200 $50,430
Average Salary$12.21 $2,120 $25,400



Other Employee Benefits

As a pharmacy tech, you will enjoy employee benefits such as health insurance, paid leave and pension plan. However the extent of benefits you enjoy will depend upon your employer. The largest salary benefit that an average Pharmacy Technician receives is in the form of insurance benefits at 11.70% for state and government employees and 8% for pharmacy techs working in the private sector. Working for the state, you can expect to enjoy a high Savings and Retirement benefit at 12.10% as compared to a meagre 3.50 % for pharmacy technicians placed in the private sector. State and Local Government employees get 62.30% ($42,340) as Wages and another 37.8 % ($25,689) as benefits on total earnings. Working in the private sector, you can get 70.10 %( $34,860) as wages and 29.90 %( $14,869) as benefits on total earnings.

Compensation Component Private Industry State & Local Government Private Industry Salary State & Local Government Salary
Wages and Salaries 70.30% 61.90% $36,030 $43,680
Paid Leave 7.40% 7.60% $3,793 $5,363
Supplemental Pay 3.50% 1% $1,794 $706
Insurance (Health Benefits) 8% 11.70% $3,998 $8,256
Retirement and Savings (Defined Benefit & Defined Contribution) 3.40% 12.40% $1,743 $8,750
Legally Required 7.60% 5.50% $3,895 $3,881
Total $51,252 $70,565
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



Factors That Will Affect My Salary

Apart from experience there are other factors that will play a role in deciding How much you will make as a Pharmacy Technician. Let us look at all the factors that play a role:

Place of Employment: The place of employment or geographical location can have an impact on the salary. Higher the cost of living of a place, higher the salary and vice-versa. Large metros usually pay higher pay packages as compared to non-metros as the cost of things such as rent, utilities, groceries, etc. is steeper over there. E.g. Pharmacy technician working in California earns the highest average salary $47,620 a year. The second highest average salary is in Alaska at $46,430 a year. Alabama and Kentucky rank the lowest in terms of average salary i.e. $30,980 and $30,370 and $30,040 respectively. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($56,620) and San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($56,020) are the top two earning cities for a Pharmacy technician.

Job Sector: The industry you work in plays an important role in how much you earn. A pharmacy technician placed in a hospital setting commands a higher pay as compared to a retail pharmacy. The average annual wages for pharmacy technicians working at Outpatient Care Centers and hospitals were $49,690 and $47,690 respectively. Grocery Stores paid a lower average wage of $33,000.

Education: As a pharmacy technician, you can land up your first job right after high school. However the starting wages will be a meagre low. On the other hand after graduating from an ASHP accredited pharmacy technician program, you can command a much higher salary. Similarly those of you who go on to do the associate degree program have an added advantage in the ever-competitive job market, and can easily demand a higher pay package. Alternatively if you are already working, you can continue with your job and get yourself enrolled in an online accredited pharmacy technician school which will consequently give you a salary hike. Moreover getting educated will open up niche job prospects in terms of being a compounding or a nuclear pharmacy technician that pay higher.

Certification: As a certified pharmacy technician, you will be preferred by employers as certification validates your subject knowledge and skills. The requirement for certified pharmacy technicians is set to rise with the expansion of the pharmaceutical industry. A rise in demand will eventually mean higher salaries for certified pharmacy technicians. Keeping this in mind it is highly recommended you get PTCB certified.

Experience: As in any industry, increasing years of experience equals to increasing salaries. A pharmacy technician who has been working for a long period of time gains hands on experience and skill, is, therefore a more efficient and productive employee as compared to a fresher who is still learning on the job. The starting salary of a pharmacy technician is around $25,400 - $29,090. The earnings of a pharmacy technician who has had 20 plus years of experience are estimated to be $41,660 - $50,430. With years of experience a pharmacy technician can also expect perks such as medical benefits and an insurance cover as part of the annual salary package.

Specialization: There are specializations which you can do as a pharmacy tech that will help you earn a higher pay package. Since, formal training in a school is not a pre-requisite to start a career in this field, hardly any consider specialization. This invariably creates a demand for pharmacy technicians specialized in Nuclear, Compounding and Oncology Pharmacy. Getting yourself specialized can therefore fetch you a fat pay check as compared to those who haven't advanced their education in Pharmacy Technology.

Type of the Employer: Your salary also depends on the type of employer you are working for. At times large retail pharmacies are not great payers as they compensate the experience and exposure they provide with a low wage. Smaller pharmacies on the other hand pay well in order to pool in talent, in a bid to scale up their sales. Conversely at times there are difference of wages between employers of the same cadre due to different company policies and status of the company's financial health. The salaries at two largest retail pharmacy employers: working for CVS Pharmacy, a pharmacy tech earns $22,930-$41,530 whereas pharmacy technicians working for Walgreen's Pharmacy earns $21,880-$39,630



10 Year (2008-2019) Historical Salary Growth

The current annual wage of pharmacy technicians in the United States is about $36,450. In 2008, the average annual salary was about $28,500, which shows a 32.26% increase in the average salary from 2008 to 2020.

2013: In the last decade the hike in the salary has been the highest from 2007 to 2008, increasing by a rate of 3.41%. However the hike has come down to 1.37% from 2012 to 2013.

2014: The growth rate from 2013 to 2014 has been a meager 0.81%, which has been the lowest in the last decade.

2015: The salary growth rate has bounced back from 2014 to 2015 at 1.90%.

2016: The next consecutive year it has stayed pretty much the same, indicating a growth rate of 1.55%.

2017: The good news is in the last five years pharmacy technician salary has grown the highest from 2016 to 2017 at the rate of 2.77%.

Year Annual Salary Growth
2008 $28,500 3.41%
2009 $28,940 1.54%
2010 $29,330 1.35%
2011 $30,020 2.35%
2012 $30,430 1.37%
2013 $30,840 1.35%
2014 $31,090 0.81%
2015 $31,680 1.90%
2016 $32,170 1.55%
2017 $33,060 2.77%
2018 $34,020 2.90%
2019 $35,250 3.62%
2020 $36,450 3.40%
Total $8,890 32.26%
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



How Many Pharmacy Technician Jobs (New + Replacement) Are Being Created Annually?

A pharmacy technician's career is ever growing due to the rising expansion of medical sciences. Diseases and conditions that had no cure a decade back, today have prescription medications treating them. The advancement in the pharmaceutical world means a growing demand in pharmacy technicians. These days requirement of pharmacy technicians goes beyond a pharmacy. Qualified pharmacy techs are filling up positions in a wide range of work environments, including hospitals, emergency clinics, community centers and even in pharmaceutical companies. Pharmacy techs with years of experience prefer moving up the career ladder, taking up either management positions or go on to pursue pharmacy. This further creates job openings for pharmacy techs. With the availability and dependency on prescription medication going up in the recent years, job market for pharmacy techs is bound to get better, and just in the last one year of 2019, number of jobs created for pharmacy techs were 31,700.

31,700



Industries Hiring the Most

Pharmacy technicians work in varied work environments including retail pharmacies, hospitals, grocery stores, general merchandise stores, department stores, outpatient care centers and federal government. Retail pharmacies, either independently owned or part of a drug store chain or a mass retailer are the highest employers of pharmacy techs, having 210,190 i.e. almost 70 percent of pharmacy techs actively working. CVS hires the highest number, followed by Walgreens, Wal-Mart and Rite Aid Corp. About 66,240 pharmacy techs i.e. 13 percent work in hospitals. Specialty hospital and federal government hire the least number of pharmacy technicians.

Rank Industry Employment
1 Retail Pharmacies210,190
2 Hospitals66,240
3 Grocery Stores41,960
4 Wholesale Druggists14,280
5 Federal Government6,650
6 Outpatient Care Centers6,560
7 Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals2,640
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



Highest Paying Industries

As a pharmacy tech your salary will depend on your work environment. Pharmacy Technicians working for the Outpatient Care Centers take home the highest salaries at, $49,690, the reason being federal government work settings are stringent when it comes to their quality of recruitment. Federal Government and Specialty Hospital come next as they require pharmacy technicians who are educated and skilled to handle the rigors of their work environment. The lowest payers for pharmacy technicians are retail pharmacies and grocery stores, paying an annual wage of $34,420 and $33,000 annually.

Rank Industry Hourly Annual
1 Outpatient Care Centers $23.89 $49,690
2 Federal Government $22.93 $47,690
3 Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals $19.89 $41,380
4 Hospitals $19.80 $41,180
5 E-commerce and Mail-Order Houses $18.33 $38,120
6 Wholesale Druggists $17.98 $37,410
7 Retail Pharmacies $16.55 $34,420
8 Grocery Stores $15.87 $33,000
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



Retail Pharmacies Hire the Highest Number of Pharmacy Technicians - A Look at What They Pay

Retail pharmacies are the top pharmacy technician hirers. A pharmacy technician at a retail pharmacy is responsible for dispensing medication, sorting pills, affixing labels and boosting sales. The following information will let you know more about the employment of pharmacy technicians in the top pharmacies of the country.

Costco Pharmacies: Costco Pharmacy or Costco Wholesale Corporation is an American multinational which operates a chain of membership only warehouse clubs. Its headquarters are located in Issaquah, Washington. As of 2015 it was the world's second largest retailer. They pay their pharmacy technicians salaries ranging from $28,350 - $51,330. The company is known to give great benefits in terms of bonus and competitive wages. To get yourself a job at Costco you can apply here.

CVS Pharmacy: Originally called Consumer Value Store, CVS Pharmacy is a subsidiary of CVS Health. It is headquartered in Woonsocket, Rhode Island. At present CVS Pharmacy is the largest pharmacy chain in the country having stores in 9,600 (as of 2016) locations. Working at CVS can bring you a paycheck ranging from $22,930 - $41,530. As a pharmacy technician at CVS you will dispense medication as well as ring in the cash register. They have part-time work options as well for pharmacy technicians. You can check their job openings here.

Giant Eagle Pharmacy: Giant Eagle is a chain of supermarket stores having branches in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Indiana and Maryland. The company also operates 168 fuel stations under the GetGo banner. Since the 1980's the supermarket chain has been adding pharmacies to their stores. As a pharmacy tech at Giant, you can expect to earn a salary ranging from $25,890 - $46,880, annually. To know about their job openings you can check here.

Hy-Vee Pharmacy: Hy-Vee is a chain of supermarkets, having 245 stores across Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin. In 1969 the company opened its first drug store in Iowa. It has expanded its operations by bringing in the online shopping option to all its stores. Your annual income here will range from $26,600 - $48,170. The company offers flexible part-time job options, which you can learn about here.

Kaiser Permanente Pharmacy: Kaiser Permanente Pharmacy is a healthcare facility operating in the states of Hawaii, Washington, Oregon, California, Colorado, Maryland, Virginia and Georgia. It has its headquarters in Oakland. This healthcare magnet employs a large number of medical professionals and pharmacy technicians, who are paid from $28,740 - $50,600, annually and are part of this holistic healthcare team. To know if they have job openings you can check in here.

Kmart Pharmacy: Kmart is an American department store chain headquartered in Illinois. Kmart Pharmacy has now gone online to fulfill the needs to the ever-evolving retail space. As a pharmacy tech here expect to earn from $22,820 - $41,320, annually. You can find if they have any placements on their career page.

Meijer Pharmacy: Meijer Pharmacy is part of the hypermarket chain of the American retailer, Meijer Inc. The chain headquarters in Michigan, having more than half of its 240 stores located in the state. Most of their stores have pharmacies and are open 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. If this is the company you would like to work for, where you will earn an annual income of $26,830 - $47,240, then learn about their placements here.

Publix Pharmacy: Publix is an employee owned super market chain, headquartered in Florida. The first in store pharmacy opened in 1986. 90% of Publix stores include a pharmacy and their pharmacies consistently rank number one for customer satisfaction. Pharmacy techs here earn an annual average income from $27,520 - $49,840. You can find job placements for pharmacy technicians here.

Rite Aid Pharmacy: A Fortune 500 company Rite Aid Corporation is a drugstore chain which is headquartered in Pennsylvania. It is the third largest drug-store in the nation and the largest on the East Coast. Its biggest competitors are CVS and Walgreens. As a pharmacy tech at Rite Aid you are expected to multitask without any breaks. You can expect to earn an annual salary from $23,570 - $42,680. If this is the place for you to work then you can learn about their job openings here.

Safeway Pharmacy: Safeway Inc is an American supermarket chain founded in 1915. The pharmacy is part of most of their supermarket stores. As of 2014 Safeway had a total of 1,335 stores across the country, the maximum number of its branches in Washington. It is an equal opportunity employer welcoming diverse talent and backgrounds. They pay their pharmacy techs an annual average of $28,090 - $50,850. Here's where you can look if they have any openings for pharmacy techs.

The Kroger Co: Kroger Co is an American retailing company founded in 1883. As of 2016, it was the country's largest general retailer by revenue. It is also the world's third largest retailer, having its headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio. The company operates more than 1,948 pharmacies, most of which are inside their supermarkets. If Kroger's is your kind of work place and an annual salary of $26,080 - $47,230 is what you looking at, then go ahead learn about the job openings they have.

Walgreen's Pharmacy: Walgreens is an American company which operates the second largest pharmacy chain in the country, after CVS. Its pharmacies specialize in dispensing prescription medication, health and wellness products, health information and photo services. Operating 8175 stores in all 50 states, it pays its pharmacy techs a salary of $21,880 - $39,630, annually. Check out their job openings here.

Walmart Pharmacy: Walmart is an American multinational retail corporation. It operates hypermarkets, department and grocery stores. Since is inception in 1962, the company has made its presence felt in 28 countries, operating under different names. In the U.S. the company operates over 500 Walmart and Sam's Club Pharmacies. As a pharmacy tech here you can expect to earn anywhere from $23,120 - $41,870. Find out about their placements here.

Winn-Dixie Pharmacies: Winn-Dixie is an American supermarket chain having stores in 500 locations. Its headquarters are in Jacksonville, Florida. Their pharmacies are part of the supermarket and they are open 7 days a week. Learn about their job openings here. You can expect to earn an annual income from $25,230 - $45,690



View Salaries at the Top Retail Pharmacies in a Snapshot

Retail Pharmacy Salary Range
Costco Pharmacies $29,210 - $53,080
CVS Pharmacy $23,630 - $42,940
Giant Eagle Pharmacy $26,670 - $48,480
Hy-Vee Pharmacy $27,400 - $49,810
Kaiser Permanente Pharmacy $29,610 - $52,320
Kmart Pharmacy $23,510 - $42,720
Meijer Pharmacy $27,640 - $48,850
Publix Pharmacy $28,350 - $51,540
Rite Aid Pharmacy $24,280 - $44,130
Safeway Pharmacy $28,930 - $52,590
The Kroger Co $26,870 - $48,840
Walgreen's Pharmacy $22,550 - $40,980
Walmart Pharmacy $23,820 - $43,300
Winn-Dixie Pharmacies $26,000 - $47,250



Employers Prefer to Hire Pharmacy Technicians with a PTCB Certification

PTCB is the most preferred certification across the country. Most states require their pharmacy technicians to be certified before they can work alongside a pharmacist. Even in states where certification is not required, employers prefer to hire certified pharmacy techs. At 37,813, Texas has the highest number of PTCB certified pharmacy technicians. California and Florida come next, having 20,121 and 17,378 certified pharmacy techs employed. Puerto Rico has only 192 PTCB certified pharmacy techs, which is the lowest in the country.

State # of Certified Pharmacy Techs
Alabama 4,363
Alaska 444
Arizona 12,054
Arkansas 1,438
California 20,121
Colorado 5,546
Connecticut 2,106
Delaware 857
District of Columbia 195
Florida 17,378
Georgia 8,914
Hawaii 920
Idaho 1,857
Illinois 11,561
Indiana 4,663
Iowa 3,414
Kansas 2,393
Kentucky 4,616
Louisiana 4,806
Maine 920
Maryland 4,082
Massachusetts 5,191
Michigan 8,193
Minnesota 5,373
Mississippi 2,616
Missouri 4,399
Montana 1,212
Nebraska 1,212
Nevada 2,436
New Hampshire 1,471
New Jersey 4,647
New Mexico 2,681
New York 7,529
North Carolina 11,180
North Dakota 800
Ohio 11,793
Oklahoma 2,068
Oregon 3,562
Pennsylvania 6,768
Puerto Rico 192
Rhode Island 1,075
South Carolina 4,985
South Dakota 1,131
Tennessee 9,862
Texas 37,813
Utah 3,966
Vermont 465
Virginia 8,580
Washington 5,071
West Virginia 1,958
Wisconsin 5,292
Wyoming 637
Total 276,806
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



State Wise Salary Figures

States that are top paying are expensive to live in, with higher rentals and steeper cost of utilities and groceries and even a higher cost of education. So, living in California or Alaska may help you bring home a bigger pay, however you will end up spending more and saving less. Conversely states like Alabama or Kentucky, where wages are lower can be good options to start with, with cheaper housing, groceries and utilities. A pharmacy technician working in California will earn an average salary of $47,620 per year. If the same moves to Alaska, salary will come down to $46,430 per year. In the Arkansas area, a pharmacy technician can earn $31,010 compared to the same making $30,980 in the Alabama area and $30,370 around in Kentucky. A move to Hawaii means a pay cut down to $42,300 per year.

The following table provides data on Pharmacy Technician salaries for all states in the U.S.A with a quick reference for hourly wages and average annual salary on a state by state basis.

State Hourly Wage Monthly Salary Annual Salary Salary Range
Alabama $14.89 $2,580 $30,980 $22,240 - $40,160
Alaska $22.32 $3,870 $46,430 $34,400 - $60,630
Arizona $18.03 $3,130 $37,500 $27,370 - $49,570
Arkansas $14.91 $2,580 $31,010 $22,850 - $41,210
California $22.89 $3,970 $47,620 $32,050 - $70,770
Colorado $18.76 $3,250 $39,020 $28,060 - $52,700
Connecticut $17.44 $3,020 $36,280 $25,900 - $50,830
Delaware $16.93 $2,930 $35,210 $23,950 - $49,780
District of Columbia $22.23 $3,850 $46,240 $32,770 - $62,420
Florida $16.77 $2,910 $34,880 $25,830 - $46,020
Georgia $15.46 $2,680 $32,160 $22,470 - $43,040
Hawaii $20.34 $3,530 $42,300 $29,960 - $58,000
Idaho $17.63 $3,060 $36,660 $25,890 - $49,170
Illinois $16.68 $2,890 $34,700 $25,160 - $48,040
Indiana $16.44 $2,850 $34,200 $25,260 - $45,790
Iowa $16.49 $2,860 $34,300 $25,030 - $45,770
Kansas $17.08 $2,960 $35,530 $26,040 - $48,060
Kentucky $14.60 $2,530 $30,370 $21,650 - $40,140
Louisiana $16.95 $2,940 $35,260 $26,070 - $47,460
Maine $16.29 $2,820 $33,890 $25,580 - $46,020
Maryland $17.38 $3,010 $36,160 $26,180 - $50,260
Massachusetts $18.79 $3,260 $39,090 $28,210 - $52,820
Michigan $16.39 $2,840 $34,090 $23,350 - $47,190
Minnesota $19.12 $3,310 $39,770 $27,340 - $53,440
Mississippi $16.49 $2,860 $34,290 $25,220 - $44,970
Missouri $16.19 $2,810 $33,670 $22,040 - $47,060
Montana $18.04 $3,130 $37,520 $28,740 - $48,650
Nebraska $17.10 $2,960 $35,570 $26,640 - $47,430
Nevada $18.94 $3,280 $39,390 $28,100 - $52,370
New Hampshire $17.06 $2,960 $35,490 $26,470 - $47,980
New Jersey $17.16 $2,980 $35,700 $25,070 - $49,890
New Mexico $17.52 $3,040 $36,440 $27,420 - $48,400
New York $17.84 $3,090 $37,100 $25,900 - $52,530
North Carolina $16.01 $2,780 $33,300 $23,260 - $45,650
North Dakota $19.90 $3,450 $41,390 $32,590 - $50,880
Ohio $15.63 $2,710 $32,520 $22,270 - $44,520
Oklahoma $15.82 $2,740 $32,900 $23,930 - $44,900
Oregon $20.87 $3,620 $43,410 $32,970 - $55,720
Pennsylvania $15.27 $2,650 $31,760 $21,720 - $44,050
Rhode Island $18.74 $3,250 $38,980 $26,860 - $51,170
South Carolina $16.59 $2,880 $34,510 $24,210 - $47,180
South Dakota $17.23 $2,990 $35,830 $27,510 - $46,730
Tennessee $16.23 $2,810 $33,750 $23,710 - $47,310
Texas $17.79 $3,080 $37,010 $26,710 - $49,250
Utah $18.71 $3,240 $38,920 $29,310 - $50,330
Vermont $17.25 $2,990 $35,880 $27,490 - $46,080
Virginia $16.74 $2,900 $34,810 $25,110 - $47,920
Washington $22.31 $3,870 $46,400 $34,610 - $59,990
West Virginia $15.33 $2,660 $31,890 $23,940 - $43,060
Wisconsin $17.20 $2,980 $35,780 $25,530 - $48,690
Wyoming $18.91 $3,280 $39,330 $29,210 - $50,150
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



State Wise Employment, Employment Growth & Annual Job Openings

As the demand for healthcare professionals keeps rising, each year more number of pharmacy technicians join the workforce across the country. States like Texas, California and Florida have projected to have the highest job openings. Annually, while Texas has 3,990 job openings, California and Florida have 3,740 and 2,790 respectively. When it comes to employment growth Arizona projects the highest at 24.76%,, through 2020 to 2030. A state's population and presence of the number of pharmacies and pharmaceutical companies are key factors which affect the employment rate of a state.

State Employment Change Annual Job Openings
2020 2030 Number Percent
Alabama 7,240 7,780 540 7.46% 660
Alaska 490 500 10 2.04% 40
Arizona 3,150 3,930 780 24.76% 360
Arkansas 4,510 4,930 420 9.31% 420
California 37,600 42,600 5,000 13.30% 3,740
Colorado 5,630 6,670 1,040 18.47% 600
Connecticut 3,810 3,960 150 3.94% 330
Delaware 1,470 1,590 120 8.16% 140
District of Columbia 960 1,090 130 13.54% 100
Florida 29,590 32,480 2,890 9.77% 2,790
Georgia 12,300 14,940 2,640 21.46% 1,360
Hawaii 1,800 1,940 140 7.78% 170
Idaho 1,970 2,200 230 11.68% 20
Illinois 21,390 21,920 530 2.48% 1,800
Indiana 9,290 9,850 560 6.03% 830
Iowa 4,080 4,560 480 11.76% 400
Kansas 3,760 3,890 130 3.46% 320
Kentucky 8,430 9,070 640 7.59% 770
Louisiana 12,310 13,730 1,420 11.54% 140
Maine 2,210 2,230 20 0.90% 180
Maryland 8,600 9,860 1,260 14.65% 890
Massachusetts 9,540 10,050 510 5.35% 840
Michigan 15,650 15,660 10 0.06% 1,260
Minnesota 8,430 9,040 610 7.24% 770
Mississippi 3,570 3,720 150 4.20% 10
Missouri 9,790 10,710 920 9.40% 920
Montana 1,140 1,250 110 9.65% 110
Nebraska 2,650 2,820 170 6.42% 240
Nevada 1,240 1,430 190 15.32% 130
New Hampshire 1,720 1,930 210 12.21% 170
New Jersey 9,750 10,390 640 6.56% 880
New Mexico 2,400 2,600 200 8.33% 220
New York 19,590 20,810 1,220 6.23% 1,750
North Carolina 13,620 14,770 1,150 8.44% 1,260
North Dakota 850 930 80 9.41% 80
Ohio 15,910 16,760 850 5.34% 1,400
Oklahoma 4,980 5,310 330 6.63% 450
Oregon 5,180 5,740 560 10.81% 500
Pennsylvania 18,150 19,350 1,200 6.61% 1,630
Puerto Rico 5,260 6,200 940 17.87% 560
Rhode Island 1,800 1,940 140 7.78% 160
South Carolina 7,500 8,010 510 6.80% 680
South Dakota 1,330 1,430 100 7.52% 120
Tennessee 10,840 11,290 450 4.15% 940
Texas 37,240 44,250 7,010 18.82% 3,990
Utah 3,770 4,460 690 18.30% 400
Vermont 670 690 20 2.99% 60
Virgin Islands 50 60 10 20.00% 10
Virginia 9,630 10,560 930 9.66% 910
Washington 7,400 7,870 470 6.35% 710
West Virginia 2,980 3,020 40 1.34% 250
Wisconsin 7,630 7,880 250 3.28% 650
Wyoming 580 620 40 6.90% 50
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



Top 100 Best Paying Metros for Pharmacy Technicians In 2019

As a pharmacy technician the salary you earn will depend on various factors, namely; location, type of employer, work experience, certification and your educational background. It is always good to know how much pharmacy techs in other metros make while doing the same work as yours. Pharmacy technicians working in San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA earn the highest salaries at $56,620, annually and $27.22, hourly. While San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward and Santa Rosa are other high paying metros in California, Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue and Olympia-Tumwater are the highest paying metros in Washington. The table below gives you the list of the 100 best paying metros in terms of hourly and annual salary.

City Hourly Wage Annual Salary Annual Salary Range
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA $27.22 $56,620 $34,470 - $80,710
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA $26.93 $56,020 $35,800 - $79,930
Santa Rosa, CA $25.39 $52,810 $37,910 - $77,610
Stockton-Lodi, CA $24.45 $50,860 $35,120 - $75,880
Vallejo-Fairfield, CA $24.32 $50,580 $32,210 - $78,840
Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA $23.83 $49,570 $35,210 - $65,630
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA $23.82 $49,540 $33,030 - $76,290
Napa, CA $23.40 $48,670 $33,560 - $75,550
Modesto, CA $23.33 $48,520 $34,480 - $73,090
Redding, CA $23.32 $48,510 $33,960 - $71,490
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA $23.05 $47,940 $36,880 - $61,180
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA $22.73 $47,270 $33,360 - $64,630
Olympia-Tumwater, WA $22.63 $47,060 $35,440 - $61,670
Bremerton-Silverdale, WA $22.47 $46,730 $35,290 - $60,890
Chico, CA $22.36 $46,500 $32,910 - $61,940
Madera, CA $22.31 $46,410 $38,630 - $54,120
Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA $22.25 $46,290 $31,770 - $64,980
Salinas, CA $22.19 $46,160 $32,130 - $64,640
Mount Vernon-Anacortes, WA $22.16 $46,100 $37,700 - $53,460
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA $22.01 $45,780 $30,680 - $66,900
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA $22.00 $45,770 $31,930 - $67,580
Longview, WA $21.86 $45,460 $31,040 - $63,990
Anchorage, AK $21.67 $45,070 $33,900 - $59,300
San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA $21.62 $44,960 $33,060 - $58,360
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA $21.47 $44,650 $33,610 - $59,300
Fairbanks, AK $21.27 $44,250 $33,770 - $52,640
Walla Walla, WA $21.24 $44,170 $33,010 - $52,200
Spokane-Spokane Valley, WA $21.20 $44,090 $34,290 - $55,860
Bellingham, WA $21.17 $44,040 $34,180 - $55,240
Bend-Redmond, OR $21.13 $43,940 $34,600 - $51,790
Kennewick-Richland, WA $21.04 $43,760 $33,720 - $51,470
Salem, OR $21.02 $43,720 $34,140 - $52,690
Albany, OR $21.01 $43,710 $34,810 - $51,670
Eugene, OR $20.87 $43,400 $33,390 - $52,200
Fresno, CA $20.78 $43,230 $29,090 - $65,440
Wenatchee, WA $20.72 $43,090 $31,720 - $52,610
Hanford-Corcoran, CA $20.54 $42,730 $32,580 - $52,480
Urban Honolulu, HI $20.53 $42,700 $29,700 - $59,420
Bakersfield, CA $20.41 $42,450 $27,760 - $61,090
Yakima, WA $20.32 $42,260 $31,460 - $51,220
Flagstaff, AZ $20.23 $42,080 $29,640 - $55,910
Bismarck, ND $20.17 $41,960 $31,470 - $51,540
Rochester, MN $20.16 $41,930 $32,200 - $56,860
Atlantic City-Hammonton, NJ $20.07 $41,750 $29,170 - $55,300
Kingston, NY $19.84 $41,270 $26,630 - $60,990
El Centro, CA $19.82 $41,220 $27,080 - $54,730
Carson City, NV $19.79 $41,160 $27,930 - $58,280
Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI $19.70 $40,970 $32,530 - $50,630
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI $19.64 $40,850 $27,680 - $55,970
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA $19.48 $40,510 $29,000 - $57,640
Fargo, ND-MN $19.31 $40,170 $32,390 - $50,110
Salt Lake City, UT $19.31 $40,170 $31,530 - $51,140
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO $19.31 $40,160 $28,360 - $55,620
Yuba City, CA $19.31 $40,160 $27,080 - $51,820
Farmington, NM $19.28 $40,100 $30,970 - $50,600
Medford, OR $19.26 $40,060 $32,970 - $50,980
Grants Pass, OR $19.18 $39,890 $27,760 - $52,570
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH $19.17 $39,880 $28,250 - $55,170
Mankato-North Mankato, MN $19.16 $39,850 $26,940 - $52,590
Cheyenne, WY $19.12 $39,760 $30,970 - $50,070
Tucson, AZ $19.11 $39,740 $30,510 - $50,430
St. Cloud, MN $19.08 $39,690 $28,090 - $52,230
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV $19.08 $39,690 $27,310 - $55,450
Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV $19.05 $39,620 $28,200 - $53,360
Pittsfield, MA $18.99 $39,490 $28,430 - $52,890
Hinesville, GA $18.97 $39,450 $26,970 - $50,110
Merced, CA $18.97 $39,450 $28,870 - $54,660
Coeur d'Alene, ID $18.94 $39,400 $28,430 - $51,850
Grand Forks, ND-MN $18.94 $39,400 $32,460 - $49,950
Reno, NV $18.93 $39,380 $28,640 - $50,670
Billings, MT $18.85 $39,210 $30,700 - $50,310
Boulder, CO $18.84 $39,190 $29,210 - $52,410
Ann Arbor, MI $18.72 $38,930 $24,650 - $51,040
Colorado Springs, CO $18.69 $38,880 $27,680 - $53,470
Odessa, TX $18.66 $38,820 $27,930 - $50,420
Jackson, MS $18.63 $38,760 $25,370 - $49,300
Waco, TX $18.61 $38,710 $28,130 - $50,600
Lewiston, ID-WA $18.60 $38,680 $28,350 - $52,580
Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL $18.57 $38,620 $26,830 - $59,140
San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX $18.56 $38,600 $29,240 - $50,370
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA $18.53 $38,550 $27,290 - $50,780
Iowa City, IA $18.48 $38,440 $27,700 - $54,430
Las Cruces, NM $18.45 $38,380 $27,130 - $51,280
Provo-Orem, UT $18.45 $38,370 $28,470 - $50,000
Midland, TX $18.44 $38,360 $28,370 - $49,140
Yuma, AZ $18.41 $38,300 $27,600 - $49,840
Ogden-Clearfield, UT $18.36 $38,180 $29,040 - $49,230
Killeen-Temple, TX $18.33 $38,130 $27,790 - $49,300
Madison, WI $18.33 $38,130 $28,350 - $49,350
Barnstable Town, MA $18.33 $38,120 $28,120 - $53,490
Shreveport-Bossier City, LA $18.31 $38,080 $26,980 - $53,270
Hammond, LA $18.20 $37,850 $26,840 - $56,510
Visalia-Porterville, CA $18.19 $37,830 $28,050 - $49,720
Prescott, AZ $18.12 $37,690 $28,270 - $48,920
St. George, UT $18.12 $37,680 $27,600 - $50,020
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA $18.11 $37,660 $25,910 - $53,420
Charleston-North Charleston, SC $18.10 $37,650 $26,970 - $49,310
Pueblo, CO $18.08 $37,600 $28,360 - $49,830
Amarillo, TX $18.05 $37,540 $28,350 - $49,110
Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, WI $18.04 $37,530 $26,280 - $50,300
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020



Pharmacy Technician Compared to Similar Healthcare Occupations

When you compare a pharmacy technician's salary with other health care professionals you will realize that it is on the lower side. The educational requirements to join the workforce as a pharmacy technician is not as much when compared to that of other careers. With just a certificate or a diploma you can start working. When it comes to levels of stress, a pharmacy technician does not have to deal with emergency or life-threatening situations. The comparative ease of this career makes up for the lower salaries. With an average annual salary of $35,100 in 2020, a pharmacy technician does not earn as much as some other workers in the health care support field. Dental assistants, LPNs' and LVNs', medical assistants, registered nurses and medical transcriptionists are better paid than pharmacy technicians.

The table and information below will take through the employment projection and salaries of health care career professionals vis-a-vis a pharmacy technician:

Occupation Annual Salary 2020 Employment Employment Change (2020-30) Annual Job Openings
2020 2030 Number %
Dental Assistant $42,310 330,200 367,000 36,800 11.14% 44,000
LPN & LVN $50,090 688,100 751,900 63,800 9.27% 60,700
Medical Assistant $36,930 720,900 853,500 132,600 18.39% 104,400
Medical Transcriptionist $37,310 52,400 48,500 -3,900 -7.44% 6,600
Nursing Assistant $32,050 1,396,700 1,512,000 115,300 8.26% 187,000
Pharmacist $125,460 322,200 315,300 -6,900 -2.14% 11,300
Pharmacy Technician $36,450 419,300 435,900 16,600 3.96% 31,700
Phlebotomist $37,280 129,600 158,400 28,800 22.22% 19,500
Registered Nurse $80,010 3,080,100 3,356,800 276,700 8.98% 194,500
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020

VS Dental Assistant: While a pharmacy technician makes $35,100 annually, a dental assistant earns $41,180, which is $6,080, more than that of what a pharmacy tech makes. Annually there are 12,300 more job openings for dental assistants when we compare with that of pharmacy techs.

VS LPN: An LPN earns an annual average salary of $48,820, which is $13,720, more than what a pharmacy tech earns annually. With 60,700 annual job openings for LPNs' and LVNs', they are more in demand in the job market when compared to pharmacy technicians.

VS Medical Assistant: The salary of a medical assistant and a pharmacy tech are almost at par, with hardly a difference of $750. The job openings for medical assistants are much more with 104,400 jobs available annually.

VS Medical Transcriptionist: There is hardly any difference between the salary of a pharmacy technician and medical transcriptionist. While a pharmacy tech earns $35,250 annually, a medical transcriptionist earns $35,100. However the projected growth rate differs considerably through a period of 2019-29, with medical transcriptionist at dismal $35,270 and pharmacy tech at 3.96%

VS Nursing Assistant: Nursing assistants earn an annual income which is lower than that of a pharmacy tech by $4,250. However there 187,000 jobs created for nursing assistants annually which is 155,300 job openings more than that of pharmacy techs.

VS Pharmacist: A pharmacy technician and pharmacist work hand in hand in a pharmacy. However the level of education required for both these professions differs considerably. While a pharmacist makes $128,710 annually, a pharmacy technician earns $35,100. However the employment growth rate for a pharmacy tech is much higher at 3.96% whereas that of a pharmacist is just at -2.14%.

VS Phlebotomist: The annual salaries of a pharmacy technician and a phlebotomist are pretty close with a phlebotomist earning slightly higher at $36,320 and a pharmacy tech at $35,100. A phlebotomist however has a promising employment growth rate of 22.22% through a period of 2020-30.

VS Registered Nurse: Registered nurses are hugely in demand in the medical field and hence there are 194,500 annual job openings for them. They earn almost twice the salary of that of a pharmacy technician at $75,330.



Conclusion

Being a Pharmacy Technician, you will witness a promising growth in employment; however your personal career graph will depend on a host of factors. If you are living in Texas there will be no dearth of job openings, however your annual average salary will be in mid-range. If earning the highest is what you are looking at, consider living in San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA as pharmacy technicians working in this expensive metro earn the highest salaries. Working for a retail pharmacy can come across as the most achievable goal, however your income will be quite low when compared with that of a pharma tech working in a hospital or outpatient setting. As education and certification are the most important factors when it comes to the salary you will be able to command, we strongly recommend you take up a training program at a pharmacy technician school near you, get a PTCB certification and then make an entry into the job market.



Useful Resources

https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes292052.htm

BLS is the go-to trusted source of information where you will find all the relevant pharmacy technician salary information.

https://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/pharmacy-technician/salary

This resource is to give you an insight into a pharmacy technician's salary.

https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Pharmacy_Technician/Hourly_Rate

The information available on the website will take through a detailed analysis about the pay scale of a pharmacy technician.

http://www.projectionscentral.com/

This site is a useful resource for you to compare employment growth rate across all states and help you make an informed decision about your career.


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