Pharmacy Technician Salary in 2020 (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 (June 2020 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 2017 there were 417,720 pharmacy technicians working across the nation, out of which 282,155 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.

417,720



Starting Salary

When you start your career as a pharmacy technician, you can expect to earn a starting salary of $22,000. 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
$22,000



Average Salary

According to U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics on an average a Pharmacy technician, makes $33,060 annually and the average wage per hour was estimated to be $15.90. While the best paid earned $ 49,540 the lowest earned $ 27,900 annually.

Hourly:

A pharmacy technician earns an average hourly wage of $15.90. 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 Washington can get you the highest hourly wage of $20.41, working in West Virginia you will get only a meagre $13.41 paid per hour.

Monthly:

As a pharmacy technician in the U.S., you can expect to earn a monthly average salary of $2,755. While the highest is at $3,537 in Washington, the lowest is at $2,325 in West Virginia.

Annual:

At $33,060, 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 Santa Rosa or even in the state of Washington, well, you could be earning the highest pharmacy technician salary, annually!

Type Salary
Hourly Wage $15.90
Monthly Salary $2,755
Annual Salary $33,060
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018


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 282,155 PTCB certified pharmacy technicians active across the country. As a Certified pharmacy technician you can expect to earn an average annual salary of $33,726.



Your Salary Will Grow With Experience

In May 2017, 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 $22,000. Salaries rose to $25,900 with 1-4 years of experience, $31,750 with 5-9 years of experience, $38,540 with 10-19 years of experience and $46,980 with over 20 years of experience.

Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Less than 1 year (Starting) $10.58 $1,830 $22,000
1-4 years $12.45 $2,160 $25,900
5-9 years $15.26 $2,650 $31,750
10-19 years $18.53 $3,210 $38,540
20 years or more $22.58 $3,920 $46,980
Average Salary $15.88 $2,754 $33,034
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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 11.80% 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 11.50% as compared to a meagre 3.80 % for pharmacy technicians placed in the private sector. State and Local Government employees get 62.60% ($40,450) as Wages and another 37.4 % ($15,129) as benefits on total earnings. Working in the private sector, you can get 69.60 %( $33,060) as wages and 30.40 %( $10,050) as benefits on total earnings.

Compensation Component Private Industry State & Local Government Private Industry Salary State & Local Government Salary
Wages and Salaries 69.60% 62.60% $33,060 $40,450
Paid Leave 7.00% 7.60% $2,314 $3,074
Supplemental Pay 3.80% 1% $1,256 $405
Insurance (Health Benefits) 8.00% 11.80% $2,645 $4,773
Retirement and Savings (Defined Benefit & Defined Contribution) 3.80% 11.50% $1,256 $4,652
Legally Required 7.80% 5.50% $2,579 $2,225
Total $43,110.00 $55,579.00
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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 Washington earns the highest average salary $42,440 a year. The second highest average salary is in California at $40,890 a year. Alabama and West Virginia rank the lowest in terms of average salary i.e. $29,170 and $27,900 respectively. Santa Rosa, CA ($49,540) and San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward ($48,400) 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 $39,930 and $38,050 respectively. Grocery Stores paid a lower average wage of $30,600.

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 $22,000-$25,900. The earnings of a pharmacy technician who has had 20 plus years of experience are estimated to be $40,100 - $46,980. 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 $21,640-$38,952 whereas pharmacy technicians working for Walgreen's Pharmacy earns $20,650-$37,170



10 Year (2008-2017) Historical Salary Growth

The current annual wage of pharmacy technicians in the United States is about $33,060. In 2008, the average annual salary was about $28,500, which shows a 19.96% increase in the average salary from 2008 to 2017.

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%
Total $5,500 19.96%
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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 2017, number of jobs created for pharmacy techs were 37,500.

37,500



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 219,070 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 63,360 pharmacy techs i.e. 13 percent work in hospitals. Specialty hospital and outpatient care centers hire the least number of pharmacy technicians.

Rank Industry Employment
1 Retail Pharmacies 219,070
2 Hospitals 63,360
3 Grocery Stores 34,080
4 Wholesale Druggists 10,070
5 Federal Government 6,350
6 Outpatient Care Centers 5,550
7 Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals 2,430
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



Highest Paying Industries

As a pharmacy tech your salary will depend on your work environment. Pharmacy Technicians working for the federal government take home the highest salaries at, $43,730, the reason being federal government work settings are stringent when it comes to their quality of recruitment. Outpatient Care Centers 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 $30,950 and $30,600 annually.

Rank Industry Hourly Annual
1 Federal Government $21.02 $43,730
2 Outpatient Care Centers $19.20 $39,930
3 Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals $19.16 $39,850
4 Hospitals $18.30 $38,050
5 Wholesale Druggists $16.83 $35,000
6 E-commerce and Mail-Order Houses $16.34 $33,980
7 Retail Pharmacies $14.88 $30,950
8 Grocery Stores $14.71 $30,600
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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 $26,750 - $48,150. 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 $21,640 - $38,952. 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$24,430 - $43,974, 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 $25,100 to $45,180. 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 $27,120 to $47,460, 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 $21,530 to $38,754, 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 $25,320 to $44,310, 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 $25,970 to $46,746. 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 $22,240 to $40,032. 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 $26,500 - $47,700. 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 $24,610 to $44,298 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 $20,650 -$37,710, 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 $21,820 to $39,276. 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 $23,810 - $42,858



View Salaries at the Top Retail Pharmacies in a Snapshot

Retail Pharmacy Salary Range
Costco Pharmacies $26,750 - $48,150
CVS Pharmacy $21,640 - $38,952
Giant Eagle Pharmacy $24,430 - $43,974
Hy-Vee Pharmacy $25,100 - $45,180
Kaiser Permanente Pharmacy $27,120 - $47,460
Kmart Pharmacy $21,530 - $38,754
Meijer Pharmacy $25,320 - $44,310
Publix Pharmacy $25,970 - $46,746
Rite Aid Pharmacy $22,240 - $40,032
Safeway Pharmacy $26,500 - $47,700
The Kroger Co $24,610 - $44,298
Walgreen's Pharmacy $20,650 - $37,170
Walmart Pharmacy $21,820 - $39,276
Winn-Dixie Pharmacies $23,810 - $42,858



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 40,013, Texas has the highest number of PTCB certified pharmacy technicians. California and Florida come next, having 21,219 and 17,988 certified pharmacy techs employed. Puerto Rico has only 159 PTCB certified pharmacy techs, which is the lowest in the country.

State # of Certified Pharmacy Techs
Alabama 4,367
Alaska 429
Arizona 12,108
Arkansas 1,418
California 21,219
Colorado 5,243
Connecticut 2,040
Delaware 898
District of Columbia 200
Florida 17,988
Georgia 8,419
Hawaii 1,003
Idaho 1,688
Illinois 12,116
Indiana 4,802
Iowa 3,577
Kansas 2,403
Kentucky 4,649
Louisiana 5,056
Maine 994
Maryland 4,352
Massachusetts 5,321
Michigan 9,091
Minnesota 5,691
Mississippi 2,594
Missouri 4,481
Montana 1,193
Nebraska 1,960
Nevada 2,316
New Hampshire 1,101
New Jersey 4,600
New Mexico 2,777
New York 7,192
North Carolina 11,087
North Dakota 818
Ohio 11,424
Oklahoma 2,230
Oregon 3,676
Pennsylvania 6,766
Puerto Rico 159
Rhode Island 1,024
South Carolina 4,945
South Dakota 1,175
Tennessee 10,189
Texas 40,013
Utah 3,988
Vermont 465
Virginia 8,223
Washington 5,191
West Virginia 1,830
Wisconsin 4,932
Wyoming 673
Total 282,094
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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 Washington or California may help you bring home a bigger pay, however you will end up spending more and saving less. Conversely states like Alabama or Arkansas, where wages are lower can be good options to start with, with cheaper housing, groceries and utilities. A pharmacy technician working in Washington will earn an average salary of $42,440 per year. If the same moves to California, salary will come down to $40,890 per year. In the Alabama area, a pharmacy technician can earn $29,170 compared to the same making $39,730 in the Oregon area and $38,960 around in North Dakota. A move to Hawaii means a pay cut down to $38,000 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 $14.02 $2,431 $29,170 $20,940 - $38,970
Alaska $19.06 $3,303 $39,640 $27,170 - $51,150
Arizona $16.25 $2,817 $33,800 $23,450 - $46,450
Arkansas $14.52 $2,518 $30,210 $20,730 - $39,570
California $19.66 $3,408 $40,890 $26,450 - $59,420
Colorado $17.43 $3,021 $36,250 $26,110 - $48,280
Connecticut $16.81 $2,913 $34,960 $23,420 - $47,920
Delaware $15.74 $2,728 $32,740 $21,790 - $48,530
District of Columbia $17.6 $3,050 $36,600 $25,130 - $49,610
Florida $14.99 $2,598 $31,180 $21,820 - $40,070
Georgia $14.16 $2,454 $29,450 $20,090 - $40,810
Hawaii $18.27 $3,167 $38,000 $27,360 - $49,300
Idaho $16.76 $2,905 $34,860 $25,660 - $46,560
Illinois $15.67 $2,716 $32,590 $22,040 - $46,050
Indiana $14.76 $2,559 $30,710 $21,530 - $40,230
Iowa $15 $2,599 $31,190 $22,380 - $40,810
Kansas $15.22 $2,638 $31,660 $21,860 - $42,720
Kentucky $13.88 $2,406 $28,870 $19,620 - $39,500
Louisiana $14.78 $2,562 $30,740 $21,620 - $40,730
Maine $14.92 $2,586 $31,030 $21,810 - $42,480
Maryland $15.68 $2,718 $32,620 $22,140 - $46,520
Massachusetts $16.75 $2,904 $34,850 $23,780 - $49,380
Michigan $15.28 $2,649 $31,790 $21,160 - $44,440
Minnesota $17.53 $3,038 $36,460 $25,520 - $48,970
Mississippi $14.65 $2,540 $30,480 $21,840 - $39,670
Missouri $14.71 $2,551 $30,610 $21,270 - $41,240
Montana $16.49 $2,858 $34,290 $26,010 - $44,020
Nebraska $15.56 $2,698 $32,370 $22,840 - $43,630
Nevada $17.58 $3,048 $36,570 $26,060 - $49,690
New Hampshire $15.39 $2,668 $32,020 $22,170 - $43,880
New Jersey $15.75 $2,729 $32,750 $21,400 - $47,810
New Mexico $15.46 $2,679 $32,150 $22,740 - $42,770
New York $16.1 $2,791 $33,490 $21,860 - $48,720
North Carolina $14.64 $2,538 $30,450 $20,760 - $41,030
North Dakota $18.73 $3,247 $38,960 $26,800 - $49,870
Ohio $14.35 $2,488 $29,850 $20,540 - $40,110
Oklahoma $14.38 $2,493 $29,910 $20,940 - $40,640
Oregon $19.1 $3,311 $39,730 $30,640 - $49,970
Pennsylvania $14.28 $2,475 $29,700 $20,410 - $42,410
Rhode Island $16.98 $2,943 $35,320 $24,850 - $49,240
South Carolina $14.6 $2,530 $30,360 $21,470 - $40,240
South Dakota $15.69 $2,719 $32,630 $25,690 - $41,010
Tennessee $15.51 $2,689 $32,270 $21,470 - $45,160
Texas $16.17 $2,803 $33,630 $23,520 - $46,150
Utah $17.17 $2,976 $35,710 $26,740 - $47,280
Vermont $16 $2,773 $33,270 $22,920 - $46,850
Virginia $15.15 $2,626 $31,510 $21,090 - $45,460
Washington $20.41 $3,537 $42,440 $32,220 - $54,710
West Virginia $13.41 $2,325 $27,900 $20,030 - $38,290
Wisconsin $15.34 $2,658 $31,900 $21,810 - $43,260
Wyoming $17.72 $3,072 $36,860 $27,000 - $47,450
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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, Florida and California have projected to have the highest job openings. Annually, while Texas has 3,350 job openings, Florida and California have 2,930 and 3,330 respectively. When it comes to employment growth Nevada projects the highest at 32.13%, through 2014 to 2024. 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
2016 2026 Number Percent
Alabama 6,720 7,530 810 12.05% 640
Alaska 620 700 80 12.90% 40
Arizona 9,370 11,750 2,380 25.40% 1,060
Arkansas 3,430 3,860 430 12.54% 420
California 32,700 36,500 3,800 11.62% 3,330
Colorado 4,440 5,780 1,340 30.18% 480
Connecticut 3,560 3,740 180 5.06% 350
Delaware 1,040 1,180 140 13.46% 150
District of Columbia 820 890 70 8.54% 100
Florida 25,480 31,260 5,780 22.68% 2,930
Georgia 12,000 13,780 1,780 14.83% 1,230
Hawaii 1,550 1,700 150 9.68% 170
Idaho 1,630 1,980 350 21.47% 200
Illinois 17,990 19,710 1,720 9.56% 1,600
Indiana 8,830 9,970 1,140 12.91% 810
Iowa 3,740 4,240 500 13.37% 360
Kansas 4,020 4,650 630 15.67% 350
Kentucky 6,900 8,470 1,570 22.75% 870
Louisiana 5,860 6,620 760 12.97% 140
Maine 2,030 2,160 130 6.40% 150
Maryland 7,990 9,200 1,210 15.14% 50
Massachusetts 8,430 9,060 630 7.47% 770
Michigan 11,230 12,190 960 8.55% 1,200
Minnesota 6,830 7,250 420 6.15% 640
Mississippi 3,310 3,820 510 15.41% 30
Missouri 9,550 11,190 1,640 17.17% 970
Montana 1,260 1,490 230 18.25% 110
Nebraska 2,570 2,900 330 12.84% 250
Nevada 2,770 3,660 890 32.13% 360
New Hampshire 1,360 1,520 160 11.76% 130
New Jersey 9,200 9,890 690 7.50% 920
New Mexico 2,470 2,860 390 15.79% 230
New York 16,950 19,100 2,150 12.68% 1,710
North Carolina 12,470 15,010 2,540 20.37% 1,390
North Dakota 690 790 100 14.49% 70
Ohio 14,400 15,370 970 6.74% 1,660
Oklahoma 5,780 6,600 820 14.19% 470
Oregon 4,900 5,720 820 16.73% 450
Pennsylvania 14,510 15,340 830 5.72% 1,380
Puerto Rico 4,850 5,590 740 15.26% 530
Rhode Island 1,240 1,360 120 9.68% 30
South Carolina 5,730 6,260 530 9.25% 630
South Dakota 1,240 1,350 110 8.87% 100
Tennessee 11,960 14,960 3,000 25.08% 1,220
Texas 31,040 38,960 7,920 25.52% 3,350
Utah 3,520 4,590 1,070 30.40% 380
Vermont 550 580 30 5.45% 50
Virgin Islands 80 90 10 12.50% 10
Virginia 8,600 9,650 1,050 12.21% 870
Washington 7,190 8,650 1,460 20.31% 710
West Virginia 3,020 3,250 230 7.62% 20
Wisconsin 7,220 7,950 730 10.11% 620
Wyoming 530 620 90 16.98% 50
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



Top 100 Best Paying Metros for Pharmacy Technicians In 2018

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 Santa Rosa, CA earn the highest salaries at $49,540, annually and $23.82, hourly. While San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward and Napa are other high paying metros in California, Mount Vernon-Anacortes and Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue 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
Santa Rosa, CA $23.82 $49,540 $33,220 - $73,010
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA $23.27 $48,400 $31,040 - $72,980
Napa, CA $22.27 $46,330 $28,600 - $69,310
Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA $21.47 $44,650 $29,070 - $62,650
San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA $21.4 $44,520 $29,080 - $63,510
Salinas, CA $21.3 $44,310 $30,060 - $67,150
Mount Vernon-Anacortes, WA $21.21 $44,110 $34,680 - $53,350
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA $21.08 $43,840 $25,270 - $72,420
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA $20.99 $43,660 $32,920 - $56,960
Vallejo-Fairfield, CA $20.96 $43,600 $29,820 - $60,310
Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA $20.94 $43,560 $32,460 - $60,100
Bremerton-Silverdale, WA $20.82 $43,300 $33,330 - $53,230
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA $20.73 $43,120 $29,010 - $60,880
Chico, CA $20.62 $42,880 $31,060 - $57,370
Redding, CA $20.33 $42,290 $28,610 - $63,020
Medford, OR $20.19 $42,000 $32,510 - $54,520
Longview, WA $20.15 $41,910 $32,640 - $51,400
Bismarck, ND $19.88 $41,340 $33,060 - $50,130
Kennewick-Richland, WA $19.86 $41,300 $33,010 - $50,000
Olympia-Tumwater, WA $19.81 $41,210 $31,610 - $55,940
Wenatchee, WA $19.81 $41,200 $32,080 - $50,760
Bellingham, WA $19.77 $41,130 $29,480 - $52,680
Stockton-Lodi, CA $19.63 $40,840 $27,270 - $58,800
Fairbanks, AK $19.6 $40,770 $29,410 - $49,800
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA $19.43 $40,420 $31,010 - $50,390
Salem, OR $19.38 $40,320 $32,240 - $49,660
Spokane-Spokane Valley, WA $19.33 $40,210 $32,200 - $50,170
Yuba City, CA $19.29 $40,120 $30,260 - $55,220
Walla Walla, WA $19.13 $39,790 $30,520 - $48,620
Corvallis, OR $19.13 $39,780 $32,080 - $51,030
Bend-Redmond, OR $19.11 $39,740 $29,390 - $50,240
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA $19.03 $39,570 $26,000 - $57,050
Anchorage, AK $18.97 $39,450 $26,390 - $51,450
Hanford-Corcoran, CA $18.94 $39,400 $31,750 - $47,800
Eugene, OR $18.88 $39,270 $30,240 - $49,440
Urban Honolulu, HI $18.84 $39,180 $27,590 - $50,030
Madera, CA $18.83 $39,170 $28,150 - $50,090
Coeur d'Alene, ID $18.73 $38,960 $27,830 - $49,760
Rochester, MN $18.6 $38,680 $28,760 - $49,340
El Centro, CA $18.58 $38,650 $31,370 - $49,810
Visalia-Porterville, CA $18.55 $38,590 $26,990 - $51,080
Modesto, CA $18.54 $38,560 $26,190 - $56,060
Albany, OR $18.53 $38,540 $28,830 - $48,490
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA $18.34 $38,140 $25,060 - $55,660
Yakima, WA $18.29 $38,040 $27,070 - $48,870
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA $18.27 $38,000 $24,550 - $54,520
Cheyenne, WY $18.27 $38,000 $31,110 - $46,110
Carson City, NV $18.22 $37,910 $30,900 - $48,120
New Haven, CT $18.1 $37,650 $26,900 - $51,640
Bakersfield, CA $18.01 $37,450 $26,220 - $51,920
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO $17.99 $37,420 $26,920 - $49,220
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI $17.94 $37,310 $26,010 - $49,670
Salt Lake City, UT $17.77 $36,970 $27,690 - $48,160
Merced, CA $17.74 $36,910 $26,300 - $52,360
Flagstaff, AZ $17.71 $36,830 $27,410 - $48,670
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA $17.68 $36,780 $26,200 - $49,400
Killeen-Temple, TX $17.67 $36,760 $26,930 - $47,600
Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV $17.61 $36,640 $26,240 - $50,560
Memphis, TN-MS-AR $17.61 $36,630 $22,260 - $48,940
Boulder, CO $17.56 $36,520 $26,010 - $50,140
Ogden-Clearfield, UT $17.47 $36,330 $27,560 - $47,650
Iowa City, IA $17.45 $36,300 $25,880 - $52,890
Fresno, CA $17.4 $36,190 $26,400 - $48,830
Grand Forks, ND-MN $17.34 $36,060 $19,380 - $51,440
Atlantic City-Hammonton, NJ $17.34 $36,060 $25,870 - $49,280
Fargo, ND-MN $17.31 $36,010 $23,320 - $48,020
Casper, WY $17.3 $35,980 $27,010 - $46,890
Pittsfield, MA $17.28 $35,950 $25,670 - $50,240
Reno, NV $17.22 $35,820 $25,110 - $48,480
Missoula, MT $17.15 $35,660 $27,770 - $45,470
Billings, MT $17.1 $35,580 $26,910 - $46,060
Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT $17.03 $35,430 $22,460 - $47,020
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH $16.96 $35,280 $23,720 - $49,780
Grants Pass, OR $16.96 $35,280 $27,280 - $45,150
Farmington, NM $16.91 $35,170 $26,020 - $47,590
Colorado Springs, CO $16.89 $35,140 $25,840 - $46,470
Waco, TX $16.89 $35,140 $23,430 - $47,400
Tucson, AZ $16.89 $35,120 $21,940 - $48,060
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA $16.87 $35,080 $24,600 - $48,690
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV $16.86 $35,060 $23,080 - $49,490
Boise City, ID $16.83 $35,000 $26,800 - $45,550
Rapid City, SD $16.8 $34,940 $26,330 - $46,370
Greeley, CO $16.8 $34,930 $25,430 - $46,430
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX $16.8 $34,930 $25,150 - $47,290
Fayetteville, NC $16.74 $34,820 $21,630 - $47,420
Odessa, TX $16.72 $34,780 $23,540 - $47,410
Charlottesville, VA $16.69 $34,720 $23,870 - $46,480
Midland, TX $16.64 $34,610 $25,100 - $44,410
Fort Collins, CO $16.58 $34,490 $25,630 - $44,590
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA $16.56 $34,450 $21,900 - $49,710
St. Cloud, MN $16.55 $34,430 $22,160 - $49,180
Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI $16.51 $34,330 $26,570 - $44,740
Duluth, MN-WI $16.5 $34,310 $24,720 - $46,960
Grand Island, NE $16.48 $34,270 $22,700 - $47,160
Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX $16.46 $34,230 $21,920 - $47,270
Hinesville, GA $16.44 $34,200 $20,080 - $48,100
St. George, UT $16.44 $34,180 $26,010 - $45,750
Waterbury, CT $16.42 $34,150 $22,740 - $47,610
Manchester, NH $16.39 $34,100 $22,490 - $48,120
Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MS $16.38 $34,060 $24,670 - $46,020
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018



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 $33,060 in 2017, 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 2017 Employment Employment Change Annual Job Openings
(2016-26)
2016 2026 Number %
Dental Assistant $38,690 332,000 396,600 64,600 19.46 45,900
LPN & LVN $45,710 724,500 813,400 88,900 12.27 62,700
Medical Assistant $33,580 634,400 818,400 183,900 28.99 94,900
Medical Billing and Coding $42,820 206,300 234,100 27,800 13.48 15,800
Medical Transcriptionist $36,400 57,400 55,500 -1,900 -3.31 6,400
Nursing Assistant $28,540 1,510,300 1,683,700 173,400 11.48 195,100
Pharmacist $121,710 312,500 329,900 17,400 5.57 15,300
Pharmacy Technician $33,060 402,500 450,100 47,600 11.83 37,500
Phlebotomist $34,710 122,700 152,800 30,100 24.53 16,900
Registered Nurse $73,550 2,955,200 3,393,200 438,100 14.82 203,700
Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018

VS Dental Assistant:

While a pharmacy technician makes $33,060 annually, a dental assistant earns $38,690, which is $5,630, more than that of what a pharmacy tech makes. Annually there are 8,400 more job openings for dental assistants when we compare with that of pharmacy techs.

VS LPN:

An LPN earns an annual average salary of $45,710, which is $12,650, more than what a pharmacy tech earns annually. With 62,700 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 $520. The job openings for medical assistants are much more with 94,900 jobs available annually.

VS Medical Billing & Coding:

A medical billing and coding professional earns $9,760 more than a pharmacy tech annually. However when it comes to jobs, annually there are only 15,800 jobs available for a medical billing and coding professional, whereas a pharmacy tech has considerably a higher projected growth rate through a period of 2016-26.

VS Medical Transcriptionist:

There is hardly any difference between the salary of a pharmacy technician and medical transcriptionist. While a pharmacy tech earns $33,060 annually, a medical transcriptionist earns $36,400. However the projected growth rate differs considerably through a period of 2016-26, with medical transcriptionist at dismal -3.31% and pharmacy tech at 11.83%

VS Nursing Assistant:

Nursing assistants earn an annual income which is lower than that of a pharmacy tech by $4,520. However there 195,100 jobs created for nursing assistants annually which is 157,600 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 $121,710 annually, a pharmacy technician earns $33,060. However the employment growth rate for a pharmacy tech is much higher at 11.83% whereas that of a pharmacist is just at 5.57%.

VS Phlebotomist:

The annual salaries of a pharmacy technician and a phlebotomist are pretty close with a phlebotomist earning slightly higher at $34,710 and a pharmacy tech at $33,060. A phlebotomist however has a promising employment growth rate of 24.53% through a period of 2016-26.

VS Registered Nurse:

Registered nurses are hugely in demand in the medical field and hence there are 203,700 annual job openings for them. They earn almost twice the salary of that of a pharmacy technician at $73,550.



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 Santa Rosa, 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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