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Irish AI start-up Biologit to ‘at least double’ its team in 2023

1 Mar 2023

Dublin-headquartered start-up Biologit is currently actively growing its team following a successful funding round of €2m led by Enterprise Ireland.

Irish start-up Biologit operates fully remotely and hires all over the world. It has a team of 14 employees who are based in Ireland and other locations around the world including India, the Philippines, Poland, France and Spain.

In 2023, Biologit aims to hire at least 13 to 15 more people. Its founder Nicole Baker told SiliconRepublic.com that the team is particularly eager to hear from Irish-based applicants.

Biologit’s most recent funding round, led by Enterprise Ireland, was oversubscribed. The €2m funding means the company is in a position to take on a lot more staff.

The award-winning start-up specialises in monitoring scientific literature using AI and machine learning models. Baker comes from an immunology background, and she has years of experience in pharma regulation and clinical research.

She said that the company will shortly begin advertising for a range of medical and clinical roles, as well as IT roles.

Biologit has a clinical/medical team and a software engineering and AI team, both of which are equally important in terms of its operation.

According to Baker, Biologit has been trying to hire skilled people in Ireland for some time. However, she is struggling to find people here.

The start-up recently hired two people for its medical team. One was based in Ireland, while the other is based in India. Baker said that it was much easier to find talent in India than it was in Ireland.

She described how Biologit put out an ad on LinkedIn for staff in India and an ad for staff in Ireland. The ad targeting India-based professionals received more than 1,000 applicants in 12 hours whereas the Irish ad got around 250. The Indian applicants had a lot more experience than their Irish counterparts, said Baker.

Biologit is at a critical point in its growth at the moment and it needs experienced people with certain skills to join its team. That’s not to say it isn’t open to hiring junior people who are straight from college.

The Irish person the start-up hired to join its medical team was “very junior” said Baker. She is conscious that the area Biologit operates in might not necessarily correspond to any specific career skillset, so she and the team are open to hearing from people with experience in either the medical and pharma sector or IT and software engineering.

She is also eager to hire women, as Biologit is a company founded and owned by women. Currently, the company’s medical team is mostly made up of women while the tech team is only men.

“We obviously want to hire more women in tech,” Baker said.

Nicole Baker headshot

Nicole Baker. Image: Biologit

She explained to SiliconRepublic.com that it is difficult to balance running a high-tech, disruptive start-up that is targeting specific companies and goals with the onerous task of growing a team.

Baker tried outsourcing the recruiting process in the past, but she said this didn’t really work. “We have used recruiters in the past, although I ended up doing all the work. You end up paying them, but at the same time you had to do most of the work. That’s the experience I had when I contracted a recruiter to help us to fill roles.”

For this hiring spree Baker is choosing to rely on her network. She reached out to the some of the universities and research centres to help advertise among their student and graduate networks. She said that, for the most part, things at Biologit are too busy to take on interns at the moment.

The company is onboarding several new companies. However, Baker said that in the future there will be space for interns and more junior staff to come on board.

What is she looking for in staff? “It would be nice for them to have pharmacovigilance experience,” she said, but she acknowledged that the industry of pharmacovigilance in Ireland is “not huge”.

“Clinical development or pharmacovigilance would be good, but also medical device experience and things like that because our product looks for risks within the pharmaceuticals side of things – but also nutraceuticals, cosmetics and even animal health.”

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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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