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Looking to the future: Hiring trends for the evolving life sciences sector

18 Nov 2022

Life sciences companies are currently seeing a ‘high degree of change’. So what type of roles are they hiring for?

Click to read more stories from Future Health Week.

As part of Future Health Week on SiliconRepublic.com, we’ve been exploring what could be coming down the line in the health-tech and life sciences spaces.

We looked at 22 companies hiring that are helping to shape the future of health – with roles in life sciences, pharma, medical devices and more. It included vacancies for all kinds of jobs from specialist manufacturing positions to R&D engineers and technicians.

There’s a lot of scope for a career in the life sciences space. Whether your background is in engineering, analytics or research, the sector has something for everyone – and companies need all the talent they can get as they look to advance healthcare and therapies.

And companies in this industry are certainly looking towards the future. This Future Health Week, we heard from Accenture’s Kim Sweeney about her work as a consultant in the professional services firm’s life sciences practice.

Her job title is change management manager – a role that involves helping clients and their employees prepare and for and adapt to changes in the way they work and in the implementation of new systems.

Sweeney explained that Accenture clients globally are currently experiencing a “high degree of change as they strive to become more digital.”

“Managing change correctly is key to ensure adoption among employees. Establishing a positive and transparent change culture in an organisation is key to success and is a catalyst for future improvements,” said Sweeney.

As for what Ireland’s life sciences industry could look like in the future, there is currently a focus on becoming a global leader in biopharma and chemical manufacturing.

That’s according to BioPharmaChem Ireland’s strategy document for 2023 to 2027, which noted that there are now more than 84,000 highly skilled people directly and indirectly employed in this space in Ireland. The expectation is that this will increase by up to 10,000 jobs over the next five years, the Ibec organisation added.

But what type of jobs could these be? Barry Heavey, MD of life sciences at Accenture, told SiliconRepublic.com earlier this year that he was seeing a particularly large demand in life sciences for people who are interested in working in manufacturing, quality, supply chain management, regulatory affairs, data analytics and process development.

He also stressed that manufacturing roles are just as vital for biopharma as R&D roles. Multi-disciplinarity is also important, he said.

While layoffs are impacting the tech sector, there are also plenty of tech and IT-related opportunities on offer in the life sciences and pharma sector, as shown by our hiring list earlier this week.

Of the Irish pharma industry’s total hiring activity, IT jobs claimed a 5.44pc share in September, according to GlobalData’s Job Analytics database. This included roles for software developers, programmers, testers, analysts and more.

GlobalData added that pharma companies are hiring for ‘future of work’ jobs at a rate higher than the average for all companies within its database.

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Blathnaid O’Dea
By Blathnaid O’Dea

Blathnaid O’Dea worked as a Careers reporter until 2024, coming from a background in the Humanities. She likes people, pranking, pictures of puffins – and apparently alliteration.

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