Pharmacy Technician Employment & Salary Trends, and Career Opportunities in Illinois

Pharmacy technician employment and salary trends, and career opportunities in Illinois


Illinois is home to more than 15,000 salaried pharmacy technicians. This means, around 4.5 percent of the nation’s 334,400 salaried technicians live in The Prairie State. Aspiring pharmacy technicians choose Illinois for:

• The opportunity to work at renowned facilities such as University of Chicago Medical Center, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Rush University Medical Center, Loyola University Medical Center, and Children’s Memorial Hospital (all nationally ranked in multiple specialties)

• Access to 142 other outstanding hospitals and the sixth largest collection of health care facilities in the country

• Access to hundreds of quality health care and pharmacy technician training programs

• Employment: Illinois has the nation’s fifth highest employment level for this occupation

Employment and Salary Trends for Illinois Pharmacy Technicians

According the Bureau of Labor Statistics (, Illinois is home to 15,630 salaried pharmacy technicians. They average $30,030 per year. In 2006, Illinois-based pharmacy technicians averaged $26,350. This means salaries have increased by $600+ each year. Across the nation, pharmacy technicians average around $28,400 per year, with the top ten percent averaging $41,880 and the bottom ten percent earning $20,310 per year.

In addition to salary growth, aspiring Illinois pharmacy technicians can expect a fair amount of employment growth in the coming years. In 2006, the state was home to 14,810 pharmacy technicians, so the industry here added 630 new jobs between 2006 and today. Overall, the pharmacy technician industry will experience a significant amount of employment growth between now and 2020. The industry expects to add 108,300 new jobs, so employment is expected to grow by an impressive 32 percent.

One metropolitan area in Illinois made the list of top 10 metropolitan areas with the highest employment level for pharmacy technicians. The Chicago-Naperville-Joliet metro area is listed at number one, with an employment figure of 9,210 and an average salary of $30,630 or $14.73 an hour.

Although Illinois’s metro areas did not make the list of metro areas with the highest salaries, pharmacy technicians living in this metro area earn much more than the nations bottom 10 percent ($20,310) and more than the national average of $28,400 per year.

Pharmacy Technician Career Opportunities in Illinois

The top employers for pharmacy technicians are large chain pharmacies and health & personal care stores. However, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, aspiring pharmacy technicians can still find work in other environments such as independent pharmacies, computer systems design firms, at scientific and technical consulting services, in government departments, at hospitals and outpatient care centers, clinics, mom and pop pharmacies, grocery stores, department stores, and at electronic shopping and mail-order houses. Jobs are also available in education.

The state of Illinois is home to a number of independent drug stores, schools, retail stores,  health and medical facilities, large chain pharmacies, and personal care stores. Some of the biggest pharmacy chains, and health and personal care chains in Illinois include:

  • CVS
  • Walgreens
  • Target Pharmacy
  • Walmart
  • Kmart Pharmacy

Some of Illinois’s largest hospitals/hospital systems include:

  • Adventist Health System
  • University of Chicago Medical Center Northwestern Memorial Hospital
  • Rush University Medical Center
  • Loyola University Medical Center
  • Children’s Memorial Hospital
  • Advocate Christ Medical Center
  • University of Illinois Medical Center Chicago
  • Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago
  • Alexian Brothers Medical Center
  • NorthShore Evanston Hospital
  • Carle Foundation
  • Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital
  • Provena St. Joseph Medical Center

Schools Offering Pharmacy Technician Training Programs Include: