Scientific Laboratory Technician

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Scientific laboratory technician : Job description
More in this section
1. Job description
2. Salary and conditions
3. Entry requirements
4. Training
5. Career development
6. Employers and vacancy …
7. Related jobs
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Case studies
* Research chemist: Dave
* Laboratory technician: Abbas
Scientific laboratory technicians are responsible for laboratory-based tasks, which include sampling, testing, measuring, recording and analysing results in biological, chemical, physical and life sciences. They also provide all the required technical support to enable the laboratory to function effectively whilst adhering to correct procedures and health and safety guidelines. Scientific laboratory technicians carry out fundamental tests as part of a scientific team. These tests assist in the advancement and development of modern medicine and science. The work plays an important role in the foundation stages of research and development (R&D) and in scientific analysis and investigation. Typical work activities

The main function of a scientific laboratory technician is to perform the specific scientific procedures that allow scientists to perform the more complex analytical processes of the laboratory. Tasks typically involve:

* performing laboratory tests in order to produce reliable and precise data to support scientific investigations; * carrying out routine tasks accurately and following strict methodologies to carry out analyses; * preparing specimens and samples;

* constructing, maintaining and operating standard laboratory equipment, for example centrifuges, titrators, pipetting machines and pH meters; * ensuring the laboratory is well-stocked and resourced;

* recording and sometimes interpreting results to present to senior colleagues; * using computers and performing mathematical calculations for the preparation of graphs; * keeping up to date with technical developments, especially those which can save time and improve reliability; * demonstrating practical procedures if working in education; * conducting searches on identified topics relevant to the research; * following and ensuring strict safety procedures and safety checks. The actual nature of the work will depend upon the organisation. For example: * within a local authority environmental health department, the work may involve analysing food samples to consider prosecution and to protect public health; * within the water industry, the work will mainly focus on the collection and analysis of water samples. Scientific laboratory technician : Salary and conditions

More in this section
1. Job description
2. Salary and conditions
3. Entry requirements
4. Training
5. Career development
6. Employers and vacancy …
7. Related jobs
Print all pages in this section
Case studies
* Research chemist: Dave
* Laboratory technician: Abbas
* Range of typical starting salaries for those with little or no experience: £14,000 to £19,000, usually depending on qualifications held on entry. * Salary range for technicians with some experience is £20,000-£25,000. * For experienced technicians in management/supervisory roles, salaries can be in excess of £40,000. * For those working in London, the London weighting allowance adds approximately £1,500-£2,500 to the basic salary. * Salaries are generally low, but with specialist experience, you may find higher rewards. Overtime or on-call payments may also be possible. * Higher salaries may be paid for management responsibilities. * Working hours are mainly nine to five, possibly with some additional hours. Working within the NHS may require shifts and on-call duties. * Work is almost exclusively in laboratories where protective clothing is worn, but there may be occasional trips out to collect or deliver specimens or to take measurements. * Following strict...
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