Medical and lab work generates a huge amount of courier work. Whether it’s moving equipment, reagents, samples, medicines or paperwork, this sector has its own logistics work. Some labs employ couriers, but many contract work out to external firms, which either employ their own couriers or offer self-employed courier jobs to drivers in their fleet. |
While it is a specialised sector of the industry, the skills possessed by a good courier are directly transferrable to those needed by a good medical/lab courier. Lab and medical courier work makes a great way for existing couriers to diversify their work as well as a good starting point for those interested in courier work generally. What’s more, the large number of self-employed courier jobs in this field make it a great place to pick up work on an ad-hoc basis, potentially alongside another job when times are quiet, without the need to fully commit to a career in logistics.
What Do Medical/Lab Couriers Do?
Companies in the laboratory science and medical fields generally send and receive a large number of packages. In these fields packages are often small, varied, fragile or expensive and frequently require cold storage during transit. Accompanying documentation is as important as the packages themselves. Efforts must be made to avoid mislabelling and maintain safety protocols required to transport certain materials.
Medical and lab couriers often have to take extra care with the handling of their packages as well as ensuring that they drive carefully and promptly. Medical and scientific packages can frequently be unstable, fragile or perishable. When hiring long-term contractors or looking for people to take self-employed courier jobs, courier firms typically ensure that their workers are able to successfully meet these criteria.
What Skills Does a Medical/Lab Courier Need?
Broadly speaking, the skills required by a medical/lab courier are the same as those required by any other courier: good driving skills, punctuality, a professional demeanour, the ability to lift reasonable weights and good organisational skills. There is generally more emphasis on punctuality and organisational skills as long delays can invalidate results or destroy perishable products. Mislabelling can be catastrophic in these particular fields and must be avoided at all costs. Additionally, some products involved in chemical synthesis or medical treatment can be under increased legal scrutiny due to their usefulness in the illegal drug trade, so keeping good paperwork is a must.
The skills involved in medical/lab courier work are all completely transferrable to all other forms of courier work, even if the emphasis may be slightly different. In fact, many of them are seen as good practices in courier work in general. Consequently, self-employed courier jobs in the medical/lab fields can be a great way to either get started in the industry or diversify your client base.
Norman Dulwich is a correspondent for Courier Exchange, the world's largest neutral trading hub for same day self employed courier jobs in the express freight exchange industry. Over 4,000 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe 'wholesale' environment.
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