Care + Career

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      Pharmacy Technicians in 2020: What You Need to Know


      It's a time of opportunity and advancement for the pharmacy technician. The industry is changing, and this role is being elevated in new and exciting ways. Want to get on the path to professional success as a current or aspiring pharmacy technician? We gathered insights and data from 159 pharmacy employers to uncover factors that can impact your journey. Here are three key findings to guide you through 2020 and beyond.

       For a full summary, download our 2020 Industry Outlook PDF, now available in accessTM: an allied health industry journal.


      Pharmacy technicians are taking on more roles requiring advanced skill sets. 

      employers report that pharmacy technicians have more responsibility this yearThe role of the pharmacy technician has expanded in recent years. 40% of employers said pharmacy technicians have more responsibilities this year than last, and that survey data was collected prior to the COVID-19 pandemic—which has led to some additional tasks aimed to keep the pharmacy a safe environment for staff and patients. The trend toward elevating the role of the pharmacy technician makes it an exciting time to join this profession.

      Employers report that pharmacy technicians are lacking essential soft skills.

      Pharmacy technicians spend a lot of face-to-face time with patients, making strong soft skills important. The top three most valued soft skills were unfortunately also identified as the most lacking, according to employers: critical thinking, professionalism, and verbal communication.

      Here's the good news: If you're a current certification holder, you have access to our CE Communication Series to help improve your communication skills with both patients and colleagues! It's a great opportunity to grow and prove to current or potential employers that you possess skills they value in a team member.

      most important and most lacking soft skills


      Certification is the top screening criteria for pharmacy technician applications.

      Of the employers surveyed, 81% screen for certification, and 55% screen for state licensure. These ranked higher than years of experience, which is great news for those who are new to the field. Certification can not only help you get a job, it can also maximize your earning potential: 63% of employers pay employees more when they earn their certification. 

      screening criteria for pharmacy technician applications

      As this role evolves and requirements change, it's important that aspiring and current pharmacy technicians learn and adapt. Change provides potential for growth and success, and we're dedicated to helping you access a better future and embrace this opportunity.

      For further insights to help you on your path to success, download an infographic that shares more statistics and trends on the pharmacy technician profession by clicking the button below.

      Download Infographic

      If you'd like to learn more about pharmacy technician certification (CPhT), or take our quiz to find out if you qualify to take the ExCPT for pharmacy technician certification, visit



      Topics: cpht