With the current labor shortage, understanding why pharmacy technicians stay in their jobs is important.
The current labor shortage hasn’t bypassed pharmacies: many report having difficulty filling available positions for pharmacy technicians. Retention and job satisfaction among pharmacy technicians has been little studied. A poster presented by Victoria Kosinski, PharmD, WVUMedicine – Allied Health Solutions Specialty Pharmacy, Wilmington, Delaware at the 2022 American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Summer Meetings and Exhibition in Phoenix, Arizona, looked at the factors that impact satisfaction and retention for technicians in a variety of areas of pharmacy practice.
A survey was made available to virtual message board and pharmacies via a link or QR code. The survey was intended for current pharmacy technicians aged 18 years and older who were registered with a state board of pharmacy. Technicians were asked about their satisfaction with their current position as well as the likelihood that they would remain in the position for 1 and 3 years. Respondents were also asked about factors that may affect that likelihood, such as compensation, stress levels, staffing, and assigned tasks.
The survey was completed by 295 licensed pharmacy technicians from 28 states. Sixty percent of the respondents were pharmacy technicians who currently worked in a hospital setting. Although 71% of the technicians said that they would likely still be in their position a year later, only 40% said that they would likely still be there in 3 years. The most important factors impacting this choice included advancement opportunities and compensation. When asked why a technician would leave his or her current place of employment, the top 3 reasons were compensation, advancement opportunities, and stress levels.
The findings of the survey indicate that a supportive environment and a level of compensation that is commensurate with a technician’s work were the biggest reasons why a technician would likely stay in their position. For further research, Kosinski said that technicians who are not registered with a pharmacy board as well as those working in a wider range of practice settings will be important to include to allow for a fuller picture.
Kosinski V. Factors that impact pharmacy technician retention. Presented at: American Society of Health-System Pharmacists 2022 Summer Meetings & Exhibition; June 11-15, 2022; Phoenix, AZ. Poster 3-M.