In Summary - Chemistry Laboratory Technician
Chemistry Laboratory Technicians typically work in the following Career Sectors:
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The Work - Chemistry Laboratory Technician
Chemistry laboratory technician's aid and assist chemists and other scientists. They may work on research experiments and analysis of results, or the development of new materials and products. In quality assurance, they check that products and materials are safe and meet required standards. They do tests and experiments, and report their findings to the scientist.
Technicians are responsible for the day-to-day running of the laboratory. They set up and clear away equipment for demonstrations in teaching laboratories. They clean and repair equipment, monitor and label stock, and order replacements.
Most commonly reported Work Tasks
- Monitor product quality to ensure compliance with standards and specifications.
- Compile and interpret results of tests and analyses.
- Set up and conduct chemical experiments, tests, and analyses, using techniques such as chromatography, spectroscopy, physical or chemical separation techniques, or microscopy.
- Conduct chemical or physical laboratory tests to assist scientists in making qualitative or quantitative analyses of solids, liquids, or gaseous materials.
- Provide and maintain a safe work environment by participating in safety programs, committees, or teams and by conducting laboratory or plant safety audits.
- Prepare chemical solutions for products or processes, following standardized formulas, or create experimental formulas.
- Maintain, clean, or sterilize laboratory instruments or equipment.
- Write technical reports or prepare graphs or charts to document experimental results.
- Provide technical support or assistance to chemists or engineers.
- Order and inventory materials to maintain supplies.
Most commonly reported Work Activities
- Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Analyzing Data or Information Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Processing Information Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Interacting With Computers Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Interests - Chemistry Laboratory Technician
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.
Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their most productive under supervisors who give clear guidelines and while performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.
They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
As a Chemistry laboratory technician, you must be thorough, methodical and accurate in setting up and doing experiments. You must be able to record test results and write reports. Good teamwork skills are very important, because technicians work closely with scientists and teachers; attention to detail is also desirable.
Technicians often get on-the-job training, so you must be willing to learn and develop new knowledge and skills. You must be able to use sophisticated equipment and adapt to developments in laboratory technology.
Entry Requirements - Chemistry Laboratory Technician
Pay & Salary - Chemistry Laboratory Technician
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 23k - 41k
Last Updated: March, 2017
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Labour Market Updates - Chemistry Laboratory Technician
While the supply of graduates appears to be sufficient to meet the annual recruitment requirement (5,500 graduates in 2017), the demand is arising for roles for those with a high level of experience and/or in niche areas. The demand is for a small number of people given the relatively small size of this occupation (approx. 1% of total employment) and in the areas associated with pharmaceuticals, biopharma and food development.
National Skills Bulletin 2018