The pharmaceutical industry is massive. Ill-health and disease steals tens of millions of lives every year, so a lot of money is invested in the search for new drugs. Many people enter the pharmaceutical industry because they want to make a difference, but it is useful to remember that many pharmaceutical jobs are also very well paid.
The sector is predicted to continue growing over the next five years. The continued development of strategic new drugs and therapeutic vaccines presents great opportunities for scientists and sales reps alike, so if you are considering a career in the pharmaceutical industry, the future looks bright.
Here is a list of the five top pharmaceutical jobs.
1. Biotechnology Senior Research Scientist
Senior research scientists are at the top of their game. They are responsible for managing research projects, making applications for research funding, reporting back on research findings, and keeping a close eye on new technologies. A familiarity with software development and IT is also desirable in the high-tech world of today. To reach this level within a pharmaceutical company, you need to have a broad skillset, which includes project management experience as well as plenty of time served in clinical research.
2. Research Scientists
Research scientists work in the laboratory or out in the field. To qualify for a position as a research scientist, you will need to have experience of laboratory procedures, including setting up and monitoring experiments. Research scientists typically write the proposals for research funding, so excellent writing skills are required, as well as the ability to present findings clearly and concisely.
3. Field Sales Reps
Field sales reps may not have experience of working in a laboratory setting, but they do need to have a thorough understanding of the products they sell. Sales reps are responsible for selling a pharmaceutical company’s products to new and existing customers. Excellent social skills are essential. If you are good at your job, your earnings potential will be very high.
4. Pharmaceutical Financial Analyst
The pharmaceuticals industry is first and foremost a business. Pharmaceutical companies are in the game to make money – serious money – so financial analysts are employed to make sure the business is stable and profitable. Your job is to advise management on which investments are likely to be the most profitable, as well as the areas where cost savings can be made. Pharmaceutical financial analysts will normally have a background in finance rather than pharmaceuticals.
A career as a pharmacist is generally seen as less attractive than medicine, but if you want to be at the cutting edge of pharmaceutical technology whilst retaining a degree of patient interaction, this is the career for you. To get your foot in the door, look for summer internships or placements, as these will give the experience required once you have graduated from university.
Jobs in the pharmaceuticals industry are highly sought after and competition is fierce. You will need the right qualifications and an undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline is essential for research-based careers.