Laboratory Assistant Salary
|Salary||$24,058 - $47,479|
|Bonus||$0.00 - $3,858|
|Total Pay (||$23,218 - $41,585|
|Hourly Rate||$11.02 - $19.23|
|Overtime||$15.10 - $29.91|
|Bonus||$0.00 - $3,858|
|Total Pay (||$23,218 - $41,585|
Job Description for Laboratory Assistant
A laboratory assistant generally holds is an entry-level support position requiring a high school diploma (or equivalent) and some college-level lab experience.Read More...
Laboratory assistants aid the lab director in a variety of tasks, and their specific duties generally depend on the nature of the lab. This position may involve helping to carry out experiments, analyzing results, preparing slides for review, storing and pulling specimens for use, cleaning and sterilizing equipment, completing record-keeping paperwork, cleaning up spills, keeping lab supplies stocked, and other duties as assigned. This is often a position held by students in a university setting as part of a work-study program. Training is on-the-job and ongoing, and outside research to keep knowledge up to date may be required. Laboratory assistants generally work alongside lab technicians and technologists, under the supervision of the lab's director. Depending on the size of the lab, they may work with other laboratory assistants as well.
There are also medical laboratory assistant positions, which can require a more specialized background. These positions might require an associate's degree in laboratory science, a certificate in phlebotomy, or certification in another relevant field. Experience can usually be substituted for education, though certification may still be necessary. Positions in a medical lab might involve working directly with patients, through tasks such as drawing blood, performing skin tests, updating records, and doing reception work such as making appointments and answering phones.
All laboratory assistant positions require good oral and written communication skills, the ability to follow directions, basic computer skills, and a meticulous, detail-oriented approach. Work as a laboratory assistant can be physically demanding and require the ability to be on your feet for an entire shift. Labs generally operate during regular business hours, but some positions may require overtime.
Laboratory Assistant Tasks
- Obtain, process, and analyze laboratory specimens, and log all intake and results.
- Order, distribute, and perform upkeep on stock and inventory.
- Create and transmit individual, summary, and inventory reports.
- Maintain inventory and equipment for the laboratory, including maintenance.
Common Career Paths for Laboratory Assistant
Laboratory Assistants may progress into high-paying roles like Laboratory Manager, where median compensation is $62K annually. Many Laboratory Assistants go on to become Phlebotomists or Medical Phlebotomists despite the fact that median compensation in those roles is reportedly $2K lower and $4K lower, respectively.
Laboratory Assistant Job Listings
Popular Employer Salaries for Laboratory Assistant
LabCorp of America, Quest Diagnostics, USC University Hospital, Clinical Pathology Laboratories, Inc., and Laboratory Corporation of America (LabCorp) are some prominent firms with considerable interest in employing a large team of Laboratory Assistants. Kaiser Permanente leads the field in terms of pay, with a median salary of $46K. Also paying near the top of the field are Laboratory Corporation of America (LabCorp) at $33K, St. John Health System at $33K, and Quest Diagnostics, where Laboratory Assistants annually earn $33K.
Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include Clinical Pathology Laboratories, Inc. at $30K, and LabCorp of America where $32K is the norm, but it is worth noting that some Laboratory Assistants there earn up to $52K.
Popular Skills for Laboratory Assistant
Laboratory Assistants report using a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Biotechnology, Microbiology, Molecular Biology, and Quality Assurance / Quality Control are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 8 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Data Analysis and PCR Analysis. Those familiar with Data Entry also tend to know Phlebotomy.
Pay by Experience Level for Laboratory Assistant
Pay by Experience for a Laboratory Assistant has a positive trend. An entry-level Laboratory Assistant with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $29,000 based on 820 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Laboratory Assistant with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $32,000 based on 272 salaries. An experienced Laboratory Assistant which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $33,000 based on 204 salaries. A Laboratory Assistant with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $36,000 based on 84 salaries.
Pay Difference by Location
For Laboratory Assistants, busy New York offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 23 percent above the national average. Laboratory Assistants can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like San Diego (+16 percent), Boston (+15 percent), Houston (+7 percent), and Seattle (+7 percent). Trailing the national average by 13 percent, Tampa is the market with the smallest paychecks. Employers in Detroit and Indianapolis also lean toward paying below-median salaries (12 percent lower and 11 percent lower, respectively).
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