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Career Tips & Advice

5 Reasons to Become a Pharmacy Tech

Concorde Staff
Concorde Staff
Updated May 18, 2016. The information contained in this blog is current and accurate as of this date.
pharm tech

The Wall Street Journal reported last month that, "Drug spending rose an estimated sharp 12.6 percent in 2014 after years of unusually slow growth-it rose about 2 percent a year between 2008 and 2012."

In 2015 alone, Americans spent nearly $457 billion on prescription drugs. Compare that to the $234.1 billion in 2008 and you begin to see the trajectory.

Chalked up to higher-priced medication, the accessibility to doctors and hospitals via the Affordable Care Act and a sizable percentage of the population surpassing average life expectancy now has never been a better time to consider a career as a pharmacy technician.

1. Enter job force quickly with the right Pharmacy Technician Training Program

At Concorde, our pharmacy technician training program can be completed in as few as eight months. Each Pharmacy Technician course will prepare you to directly apply classroom knowledge to a work setting through a combination of theory and hands-on training experiences.

We have a blended program option at several of our campuses. The program has been accelerated from 32 to 24 weeks, consisting of six, four-week terms. Two of the terms you will be engaged in hands-on experience working in externships - one in a retail pharmacy and the other in an institutional setting.

2. Job stability/portability

Given the aforementioned statistics, the job outlook, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is a healthy 9 percent projected growth rate through 2024.

You don't have to let your job dictate your life, because the great thing about being a pharmacy tech is that you aren't limited to a geographical region.

3. Variety of employment options with schedule flexibility

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that as of 2014 (the most current data available), nearly half of candidates who successfully completed a pharmacy technician training program worked in stand-alone pharmacies and drug stores.

The remainder work in other retailers such as grocery stores, acute care hospitals, nursing homes, managed care distributors and ambulatory care clinics. Online pharmacy dispensaries are becoming a popular option for those who have completed their pharmacy technician training, too.

"There are a lot of pharmacies that operate 24 hours a day - both retail and institutional-based pharmacies - and then there also is a great amount of flexibility as far as working part time and full time," says Mike Johnston, chairman and CEO of the National Pharmacy Technician Association. "So really, whatever an individual's desired schedule is, there's potential to find that type of schedule working as a pharmacy technician."

4. Never a dull moment

Many pharmacy technicians report high job satisfaction. There is nothing routine about what a pharmacy tech does on a daily basis.

From greeting customers if you're in a retail setting to filling prescriptions and managing inventory levels, the work you do is both fast-paced and important.

5. Opportunity for advancement

Becoming a pharmacy tech is a great way to test the waters of a health care career.  After graduating from an accredited pharmacy training program, you are eligible to sit for various exams allowing you to become a certified pharmacy technician (CPhT), which will give you an extra boost in job-hunting against the competition.

As you work closely with pharmacists and other industry professionals, you might find a vertical path that leads you into other subsidiaries tied to the pharmacy field.

Insurance companies, pharmaceutical sales teams, and hospital advocates are always looking for qualified candidates.

If you love consistency, are detail-oriented and like a fast-paced environment, consider making the life-changing decision to starting a career in pharmacy today!