Packaging Technologist

Job Description:

Packaging technologists design and develop packaging for different products.

Job Category:
Manufacturing & Electronics

What you will do:

In this role you could:

  • produce sample packaging to test different materials and designs
  • run production trials
  • make sure packaging meets quality standards and is safe
  • work closely with product designers and production engineers
  • work out ways to make packaging more environmentally friendly
  • write technical reports


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • knowledge and understanding of design skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

As well as:

  • the ability to come up with new ways of doing things (creative skills)
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • analytical thinking skills
  • persistence and determination (drive)
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • thinking and reasoning skills
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

To become a packaging technologist, you don’t typically need specific subjects. However, there are subjects and skills that can be beneficial and relevant to this career:

  1. Science (e.g., Chemistry and Physics): A fundamental understanding of chemistry and physics can be useful for comprehending the materials and principles behind packaging technology, especially if you plan to work with materials, design, or testing.
  2. Mathematics: Basic math skills are important for measurements, calculations, and statistical analysis related to packaging design and quality control.
  3. Design and Technology: Courses in design and technology can provide you with knowledge of design principles, CAD (Computer-Aided Design) skills, and an understanding of manufacturing processes, which can be valuable in packaging design and development.
  4. Business or Economics: Packaging technologists often need to consider the cost-effectiveness and marketability of packaging solutions. A background in business or economics can help you make informed decisions in this regard.
  5. ICT (Information and Communication Technology): Proficiency in using computer software for design and data analysis can be advantageous in this field.
  6. English Language: Strong communication skills are essential for collaborating with teams, documenting designs and processes, and presenting packaging solutions to clients or stakeholders.
  7. Environmental Science or Sustainability: As sustainability becomes increasingly important in packaging design, knowledge of environmental science and sustainability principles can be valuable for creating eco-friendly packaging solutions.

Post School

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role


You could do a foundation degree, a higher national diploma or a degree in packaging technology or packaging design.

Employers may also accept subjects like:

  • materials science
  • food technology
  • 3D design
  • chemistry


You can get into this job by doing a Packaging Professional Degree Apprenticeship.

This can take 4 years to complete.


You could start as an assistant packaging technologist or designer and work your way up through training and promotion.

Working Hours and Environment:

You would typically work 40 to 42 hours per week. You could need to work flexibly – days / nights / weekends.

You could work in a laboratory, in a factory or in an office.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you could move into:

  • product design
  • brand design
  • project management
  • marketing and sales

You could also work freelance as a packaging consultant.