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Life Sciences Recruitment Trends

18 Nov 2022

Caitriona Breaw

Caitriona Breaw takes a look at Ireland's Life Sciences industry which includes Biotechnology, Pharmaceutical, Medical Devices and Diagnostics organisations. Ireland is home to 18 of the world’s top 20 pharmaceutical companies and 15 of the world’s top 25 MedTech companies.

The Life Sciences industry includes Biotechnology, Pharmaceutical, Medical Devices and Diagnostics companies. It is an industry focused on the research, development and manufacturing of small molecule chemically derived pharmaceuticals, biologically derived medicines, medical devices and technologies and other products with the goal of improving the lives of people and other organisms. In Ireland this sector employs over 50,000 people directly and exports more than €45 billion annually. Ireland is home to 18 of the world’s top 20 pharmaceutical companies and 15 of the world’s top 25 MedTech companies which complements our highly educated and highly skilled workforce. It’s an industry that continues to boom within Ireland with new investments and expansions being announced regularly, just see our list of expansions and announcements published back in August 2022 encapsulating just a few of these within an 9 month period. It will be a challenge to ensure Ireland has a strong talent pool to fill the demand for these positions. 

What we have seen this year

From what we’ve observed as a company, the skillset in the most demand in this sector includes Senior and Leadership level Quality professionals – specifically Qualified Person professionals and External and Site based Auditors, Senior Drug Development / Formulations professionals, Clinical Operations and Clinical Development Leaders, Project and Programme management professionals with a manufacturing focus and Regulatory Affairs professionals across all levels. There has also been high demand for less experienced engineers, process professionals, and scientists to come in and aid in expansions. A focus for these companies when discussing their recruitment needs is generally a high level of technical skill and/or people management experience – these are areas worth developing in your career to position yourself well for future senior level roles. For example, if you’re working in Quality Assurance try furthering your professional development by doing a part-time QP course or take on those extra supervisory duties to show that you’re interested in being a mentor and leader. Be sure to tailor your CV to reflect all aspects of your background so you put your best foot forward at the very beginning of the recruitment process!

Looking for a change?

The Life Sciences team are incredibly busy supporting talent across Ireland. If you are a job seeker looking for support, please contact myself, Nigel, or Gillian for an exploratory chat. The process of recruiting for a role can vary in timing with some processes lasting a month and others taking three months to get to offer stage. So now is the best time to partner with us if you’re thinking about 2023. 

Caitriona Breaw is an Associate Researcher with Brightwater's Life Sciences division