Career outlook for hospital porter

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary


Currently employed in Scotland


Average UK salary


Currently employed in Scotland


"LMI for All" supplies our salary and employment status information. "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures.

Due to COVID-19 the jobs market is constantly changing. Some of the information may not reflect the current situation.

What's it like?

You would help patients in hospitals to get around the building. You’d deliver vital supplies and equipment to keep the hospital running smoothly.

You would help people who are in hospital by helping them to move around the building, for example, going from a ward to the x-ray department.

You would help a person into a wheelchair or on to hospital trolley. You’d take them to the right place at the right time and bring them back to their ward.

You would:

  • Move patients to and from wards and departments
  • Deal with incoming and outgoing mail
  • Deliver clean linen to wards from the laundry
  • Collect domestic and clinical waste, some of which may be hazardous
  • Move furniture and medical equipment safely
  • Transfer files, specimen samples and pharmacy boxes to different parts of the hospital
  • Move patients who have died to the mortuary

Patients may be frightened or in pain; you’ll need to be friendly and helpful, and cope well when people are sick or distressed.

You’ll need to keep calm and act quickly in emergencies. You’d also have to cope with difficult situations, including the death.

Your work could take you anywhere on the hospital site. In some hospitals you could help with security, such as working on the reception desk and doing patrols.

You can see more about this role in the National Health Service on the Portering staff page on the NHSScotland Careers website.


Working conditions


You would work about 37.5 to 40 hours a week, including shifts and weekends. Part-time hours are often possible.

UK employment status





Self employed


Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.

  • Positive attitude
  • Resilience
  • Building relationships
  • Cooperating
  • Supporting
  • Verbal communication
  • Empathising
  • Social conscience
  • Reliable

Skills Explorer

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To understand more, have a look at What are my skills?

Our Skills Explorer tool will help you understand what skills you have and match them to jobs that might suit you.

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.


There are no formal qualifications required to enter this job but a good general education (SCQF level 4/5) may be required by some employers.

You will also need

To be approved for membership of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme run by Disclosure Scotland.

 For some jobs you will need a UK driving licence.

Helpful to have

Relevant work experience in a hospital or care setting; Skills for Work Health Sector (SCQF level 4/5) may provide this.  

Work-based qualifications such as a Scottish Vocational Qualification in Cleaning and Support Services (SVQ level 2). This could also be achieved once in a job.