Optometric Technician Salary
Optometric Technicians in the United States take home approximately $12.37 per hour on average. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is geographic location, followed by experience level and the specific company. Among survey respondents, women are more common than men; 89 percent of Optometric Technicians are female. Some workers in this field — nearly two in five — are not awarded benefits. Medical coverage is reported by close to two-fifths and dental plans are enjoyed by roughly a fourth. Work is enjoyable for Optometric Technicians, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
Job Description for Optometric Technician
Optometrists help clients maintain sharp, accurate eyesight, and optometric assistants help optometrists in a variety of tasks and ensure their office's operations run smoothly and efficiently. It is often the optometric assistant who performs much of the preparatory work for examinations, a series of duties that includes the maintenance and calibration of vision testing equipment, the application of various pre-examination tests for incoming patients, and clerical duties such as scheduling appointments, distributing prescribed items, and performing general maintenance (including cleaning and sanitizing the office and examination room).Read More...
Optometrists rely on their assistants to help ensure that patients have an excellent experience in the optometry office, which is why it is essential for the optometric assistant to have a welcoming demeanor and a willingness to help patients with any issues and with explaining post-care instructions. The prospective technician should be a versatile, hardworking individual with an eye for detail, and they can generally expect to work a set schedule during regular business hours on a set schedule.
The specific requirements for the position vary significantly depending on the specific needs of the employer. Some states require optometric assistants to obtain licensing. In other states, employers may be willing to train optometric assistants in the office. Certification through the American Board of Opticianry and National Contact Lens Examiners may enhance employment prospects.
Optometric Technician Tasks
- Take patient history and perform preliminary examination of patient.
- Assist Optometrist with examinations and maintain patient charts.
- Explain eye exercises to patients, and may monitor vision therapy.
- Fit and dispense glasses and contact lens for patients.
- Order prescription eyewear.
Common Career Paths for Optometric Technician
Though it's uncommon, some Optometric Technicians move into roles as Optometrists, where pay is an average $96K per year. Optometric Technicians typically move into roles as Ophthalmic Technicians or Certified Ophthalmic Assistants, and those positions pay $7K more and $8K more, respectively.
Optometric Technician Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Optometric Technician
Dominating the field, Visionworks, LensCrafters Inc., National Vision, Inc., America's Best Contacts & Eyeglasses, Inc., and America's Best are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Optometric Technicians. LensCrafters Inc. offers the largest salaries in town — $23K on average.
Popular Skills for Optometric Technician
Optometric Technicians generally report applying a varied skill set to their work. Most notably, skills in Electronic Medical Records, Patient Education, Sales, and Optometry are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Bilingual. Most people familiar with Patient Education also know Optometry and Insurance. Most people experienced in Customer Service also know Insurance and Optometry.
Pay by Experience Level for Optometric Technician
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Optometric Technicians — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $25K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $29K on average — a distinctly larger sum. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $31K in this role. Veterans who have surpassed the 20-year mark may make only slightly more than those who are navigating the mid-career stage; the more senior group reports median earnings of around $32K.
Pay Difference by Location
Optometric Technicians will find that Raleigh offers an impressive pay rate, one which exceeds the national average by 16 percent. Optometric Technicians will also find cushy salaries in Colorado Springs (+14 percent), Denver (+11 percent), Pensacola (+10 percent), and Fort Worth (+10 percent). The lowest-paying market is Jacksonville, which sits 14 percent below the national average. Employers also pay below the national average in Oklahoma City and Albuquerque (13 percent lower).