Calibration Chemist

Job Title

  • Calibration Chemist
  • Instrumentation Chemist (this title could also apply to QC chemists working with analytical instruments so make sure to read the job description)
  • Calibration Specialist
  • Instrumentation Specialist


  • B.Sc.
  • B.Eng
  • College diploma (entry level)

Job Functions

  1. Maintain current equipment
  2. New Equipment Procurement and Qualification
  3. Other duties

Maintain current equipment

  • Perform scheduled calibration test and/or preventative maintenance (PM) on all analytical equipment in the lab as per the company standard operating procedures (SOP) and complete within the allocated time
  • Document and report results in accordance with the relevant SOP’s and good manufacturing practices (GMP)
  • Once the calibration/ PM is completed and reviewed by the QA and approved, release the equipment for use
  • If the calibration/ PM fails, initiate appropriate investigation paper work.
  • Ensure all the equipment have the calibration/ PM labels and are within the calibration/ PM dates
  • If the equipment are due for calibration/ PM, put the appropriate ‘out of service’ sign up
  • Contact external contractors and schedule a visit for calibrations, repair and maintenance of equipment as needed

New Equipment Procurement and Qualification

  • Budget for any needed new equipment
  • Procurement of new equipment for the lab by researching and identifying new equipment requirements and the supplier to purchase it from with the optimal price quote and planning.
  • Create a unique equipment ID for the new equipment. The equipment ID should contain all the equipment related information.
  • Write the Installation Qualification (IQ), Operation Qualification (OQ) and Performance Qualification (PQ) protocols for the new equipment.
  • Perform IQ, OQ and PQ as per the protocols
  • Write IQ, OQ and PQ results summary report
  • Write Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the new equipment
  • Train chemist/analyst on how to use the new equipment
  • Create user accounts for analyst/chemist
  • Add the equipment to the calibration and PM schedule

Other Duties

  • Maintain calibration and PM schedules, equipment inventory and calibration standards.
  • Decommission equipment that are no longer in use following the company practice and the appropriate SOP
  • Maintain calibration/ validation data, hard copy and soft copy. If using the LIMS system, scan and attach the calibration paper work to LIMS.
  • Train analyst/ chemist on the use of analytical instruments as needed
  • Perform any needed analytical equipment troubleshooting in a timely manner as to not have the system down for longer period of time and delaying the lab testing schedule

Must Have Skills

  • Some experience with analytical instruments
  • Experience working in the GMP lab environment
  • Interest in working with instruments and instrument related software
  • Excellent computer skills, including creating user accounts.
  • Strong communication, interpersonal and organizational skills
  • Knowledge of
    • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), GDP (Good Documentation Practices as per GMP), WHIMS, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), Test Methods
    • USP, FDA, Health Canada
  • Good documentation practices
  • Work well under pressure and in a ‘fast paced and minimal tolerance for mistakes’ environment
  • Able to do the same testing over and over again
  • Detail oriented and ability to follow written procedures without any deviation
  • Honest and transparent
  • Able to take responsibility for your own action
  • Work well individually and as part of a team
  • Professional, fast learner and takes initiative.
  • Able to work in a highly regulated environment and follow company Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), regulatory guidelines and safety standards.

Type of companies that hire

  • Pharmaceutical
  • Biopharmaceutical
  • Biotech
  • Cosmetic Industry
  • Contract Labs
  • Cannabis Industry
  • Laboratory Equipment Service labs
  • Equipment suppliers

Competitive advantage

at least one year of chemist/ analyst experience

Career Growth

Calibration Technician/ Chemist –> Specialist –> Metrology Supervisor/ Manager –> Director

–> consider working for the analytical equipment manufacturers and suppliers, in the R&D department or as field service engineers/technicians (highly recommended for B.Eng.)

Your other options are same as QC Chemist. Please refer to QC Chemist Career Growth.

Recommended Readings