Lab Technician Job Description | Duties & Responsibilities


If you are applying for a lab technician job, read this job description guide to see their duties and responsibilities.

The Job description of a laboratory technician may differ slightly depending on where they work.


These professionals play a major role in scientific research and medical diagnosis.

When employing lab technicians,  employers look for independent, detail-oriented individuals.


They hire lab technicians who possess good communication and time management skills.

These skills are relevant in carrying out most of their duties and responsibilities.

Some of the duties a lab technician will be expected to perform, irrespective of their work area, include collecting and preparing samples, conducting tests and experiments, and writing reports.


Contrary to popular belief, lab technicians do not work in hospitals only. There are a variety of organizations that also require their services.

Familiarizing oneself with the Job description of a lab technician is an excellent step to becoming one.

Therefore, I advise you to study this free guide on a lab technician job description.

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What do Lab Technicians do?

Lab technicians are trained individuals who carry out laboratory-based investigations.

Such investigations may be in biology, physics, or chemistry.

They work with other scientists to perform sample collection, measurement, analysis, recording, and reporting functions.

What a lab technician does dramatically depends on where they work.

Lab technicians in the medical field collect and analyze bodily tissues and fluids such as sputum, blood, and urine. They carry out blood tests and examinations of cells.

Whereas lab technicians in manufacturing companies are commonly responsible for quality control.

They examine drinks and food to ensure they are contaminant-free and meet the required standard.

Irrespective of where a lab technician works, their major aim should be to assist the scientists in carrying out more accessible functions, thereby giving them more time to focus on more complex and analytical tasks.

Laboratory technicians contribute to the advancement of science and technology.

The work environment may be hazardous. Therefore, lab technicians are expected to be cautious and protect themselves.

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What are the Duties and Responsibilities of a Laboratory Technician?

Although the duties and responsibilities of a lab technician may vary depending on the sector they work, there are some common duties and responsibilities featured in most lab technician job descriptions.

Even lab technicians who teach in schools perform most of these duties; the only difference is that they work in the education sector.

Here are some of the duties and responsibilities of a lab technician:

1. Perform Laboratory Tests and Analysis

A lab technician must perform laboratory tests and analyses.

They also ensure that the results of the tests are accurate and precise.

Because they may be used to support advanced scientific investigations.

2. Prepare Samples

Lab technicians are also responsible for the preparation of samples and specimens.

Preparation may include identifying and labeling samples.

The samples or specimen they prepare depends on where they work.

Those in research institutes may work with lab animals, plant extracts, and/or human fluids and body parts.

Whereas those in hospitals work with human bodily fluids and tissues only.

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3. Make use of Laboratory Equipment

Aside from operating laboratory equipment, some lab technicians are also responsible for making them.

Lab technicians use and maintain equipment.

As one, you are responsible for ensuring that all lab equipment is appropriately cleaned and placed in the appropriate position when not in use.

4. Record and Interpret Results

Lab technicians may also record and interpret the results of scientific investigations.

But they must still show the report to a senior colleague for approval.

5. Stay Updated with Modern Technology

These individuals are also saddled with staying updated with modern equipment and methodologies.

Especially those which make laboratory analysis more accurate, easier, and faster.

Some other duties and responsibilities of a laboratory technician include:

  • Conducting all analyses using strict methodologies
  • Adhering to all laboratory safety precautions
  • Ensure that all laboratory reagents and samples are properly labeled.
  • Ensure all lab equipment types, samples, and reagents are always available.

It is important to note that these duties and responsibilities listed above are not all there is.

Employers may choose to add or subtract these duties depending on their needs.

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What Qualifications Do I Need to Become a Laboratory Technician?

A bachelor’s degree or HND/HNC is usually required, but a bachelor’s degree is not mandatory.

Most lab technicians have degrees or higher national diplomas (HND) in :

  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biological science
  • Forensics science
  • Biotechnology
  • Pharmacology
  • Biomedical science
  • Environmental science
  • Materials science
  • Biochemistry
  • Microbiology

Although degree holders may start as lab technicians, they can work up to Senior positions with hard work and improving their qualifications.

High school leavers may also apply for lab technology or entry-level apprenticeship roles.

All you need is GCSEs and good levels of grades in science-related subjects.

Ideally, employers prefer employing individuals with experience in operating laboratory equipment.

They also prefer those who have previously worked in hazardous and infectious environments.

Knowledge of the use of the Microsoft Office suite is also preferred.

Lab technicians require a license to practice in some states and/or countries.

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What Skills Does a Lab Technician Need?

When creating a lab technician job description, employers also include specific skills.

Employed expected prospective lab technicians to possess these skills because they enable them to perform their duties accurately and on time.

Some of the skills usually featured in a lab technician job description include:

1. Communication Skills

A good lab technician should have strong written and verbal communication skills.

He or she should be able to communicate well in writing and verbally.

They should be capable of communicating their job’s technical and nontechnical aspects.

2. Interpersonal Skills

Lab technicians should also have interpersonal skills.

They should be able to develop a good relationship with other team members, including Senior colleagues. 

3. Time Management Skills

Time management skills are also relevant skills for lab technicians.

They should develop a good method of allocating time to all activities.

The daily schedule should be time-conserving and realistic as well.

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4. Organisation Skills

This skill plays a relevant role in performing so many of the duties of a lab technician.

They have to be organized and careful when performing tests and analyses.

They also need organizational skills in operating and maintaining laboratory equipment.

5. Detail Oriented

When conducting analysis and research, laboratory technicians must pay attention to details.

That is the only possible way to arrive at accurate results and conclusions.

6. Teamworking Skills

Lab technicians work as a team with scientists to perform their duties.

Therefore they must possess strong team spirit.

7. Independence

A good lab technician should be capable of conducting analysis and tests without the supervision of a senior colleague.

Although all results and summaries must be presented to a senior colleague for approval.

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Where Do Laboratory Technicians Work?

Whenever anyone hears the title’ laboratory technician,’ the first thing that comes to mind is they work in laboratories.

Well, that is not false; practically every organization with a lab requires a laboratory technician’s services.

Some of their typical employers include the following:

  • Food and drink companies
  • Manufacturing companies
  • Chemical companies
  • Hospitals
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Schools
  • Research institutes
  • Civil service
  • Water companies
  • Environmental agencies.

Job postings or advertisements may be made online or offline via local newspapers or radio stations.

How Much Do Lab Technicians Make?

The salary of laboratory technicians varies depending on where they work.

According to Indeed, on average, they make $19.58 per hour.

This figure is for those working in the United States.

Therefore it may vary in your geographical location.

The pay of a laboratory technician is determined by factors such as :

  • Employer
  • Sector
  • Experience
  • Qualification
  • Location.

A more experienced and qualified lab technician may earn more than their less experienced and/or qualified colleagues.

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Lab Technician’s Work Environment and Schedule

Lab technicians typically work in laboratories, and their work environment may be highly contagious; as such, they must always wear protective clothing and adhere to necessary precautions.

Those who work in industries or manufacturing companies may have to travel for fieldwork once in a while 

Once again, the area of work plays a role in determining the number of hours laboratory technicians works.

In the United Kingdom, they typically work 37 hours per week.

What Should I Include in My Lab Technician Resume?

Any information capable of convincing employers that you are suitable for the job is relevant and should be featured in your resume.

When creating a lab technician resume, here is some information you should consider including:

  • Years of experience
  • Area of experience
  • Soft skills
  • Hard skills
  • Academic qualification
  • License (if any)

It is also important to refer to this information during your interview.

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Conclusion: Laboratory Technician Job Description Guide

This free guide on the job description of a laboratory technician complied with aspiring technicians in mind.

But, it is still suitable as a template for creating a lab technician job description.

Therefore, don’t hesitate to use it to achieve your goal.

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