3 steps to Retain Lab Technicians and Technologists

The medical field is experiencing a surge in the demand for lab technicians and technologists, with projections indicating a 7% increase in the next eight years. However, a worrisome trend is emerging: a decline in both interest in the field and the availability of accredited training programs for medical technologists.


Every time a valuable employee departs, the lab faces numerous challenges, from the loss of institutional knowledge and revenue to the strain on other employees and the recruitment process.

Value and Trust are Foundations

Retention isn’t about chaining someone to a role; it’s about creating an environment where they feel indispensable.


Technicians need to feel they are integral parts of the team. This perception starts the moment they’re recruited and intensifies during their early days.


Interestingly, about 20% of turnover occurs within the first 45 days of employment.

This statistic stresses the need to engage and ensure your new recruits feel valued, connected, and invested.

Career Development is Non-negotiable

In a survey by Deloitte, a significant number of professionals pinpointed a lack of career progress as a primary reason they’d consider new employment. 


The message is clear: employees, especially millennials, want growth opportunities.


But many laboratories, particularly smaller ones, often overlook this necessity. 


The solution lies in creating a clear career ladder—showing technicians their potential growth trajectory. 


For instance, after two years, a medical technologist could rise to a general supervisor role, later becoming a laboratory manager, and eventually a laboratory operations director.

Engage, Engage, Engage

Engagement isn’t just a buzzword; it’s a necessity.

Regular interactions, be it group meetings or one-on-ones, are critical.

Such interactions remind technicians of the lab’s vision and demonstrate how their contributions further the company’s goals.

Furthermore, the difference in performance between engaged and disengaged employees is stark, with engaged personnel outperforming their counterparts by nearly 28%.


Creating a place where lab technicians want to stay involves a combination of genuine engagement, promising career development, and an inclusive environment.

With the industry’s projected growth, the importance of retention strategies cannot be stressed enough.

For more in-depth insights, methodologies, and statistics, check the linked references below.


  1. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians.”

  2. Scott K. “Solving the Clinical Laboratory Workforce Shortage.”

  3. Hirsch AS. “Reducing New Employee Turnover Among Emerging Adults.”

  4. Kwan A, Neveras N, Schwartz J, Pelster B. “Talent 2020: Surveying the Talent Paradox from the Employee Perspective.”

  5. Ryan A. “The Importance Of Listening For Organizational Success”

  6. Debra R. “To Be A Better Leader, Practice Active Listening.”

Empower Your Lab