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Merck Director, Discovery Project Management in Rahway, New Jersey

Job Description

Under the broad guidance of the Executive Director, Global Project Alliance Manager (GPAM), the core responsibility of this senior Project Manager (PM) role will be to oversee project management activities within the discovery space.

This role includes direct management of PMs, including understanding their projects and developing their knowledge of drug/vaccine/biologics discovery and development, governance & team processes. The staff manager will be expected to monitor the quality of PM deliverables and hold staff accountable for the maintenance of PM fundamental practices in support of broader business objectives.

In addition, the Director, GPAM may be expected to take on one of the following important responsibilities:

  • Management and/or administration of strategic management or governance committees

  • Delivery of major change projects that impact our company, research laboratory, GPAM or team performance.

Management of Discovery & Early Development Teams and Portfolios (40-60%):

  • Build on a vision of project management in the discovery space through careful stakeholder management and influential leadership

  • In collaboration with therapeutic area portfolio managers, bridge therapeutic area portfolio decision making to broader business goals, integrating across the pipeline

  • Working directly with senior leaders in the discovery and early development space, develop mechanisms to identify inflection points in investment across the portfolio that can inform decision making

  • Independently manage discovery and early development projects and/or due diligence efforts of any type, including those which require extensive experience with drug/vaccine/biologics discovery and development, involvement with an alliance partner, the company's organization, and company processes and procedures related to these teams due to their significant importance to the company or complexity.

  • Consult with the manager on a proposed direction for projects

Talent Development (40-60%):

In addition to managing discovery and early development projects, will do one or more of the following,

  • Line manage Project Managers

  • Set appropriate objectives and monitor against these

  • Provide career guidance and ensure employees have personal development plans and meaningful discussions on an ongoing basis,

  • Ensure compliance with training, policy and procedures, and

  • Conduct effective calibration of employees and provide objective and honest assessments, including taking corrective measures if employee performance does not meet expectations.

  • Coach more junior staff in the nuances of managing a discovery or early development project— e.g., management of team dynamics, understanding stages of development and how functional inputs interact to ensure project progression, coaching on when to apply research laboratory/ company processes relating to product discovery and development.

  • Collaborate with Executive Director to develop and refine PM best practices with the flexibility to meet the needs across discovery projects

  • Participate in continuous improvement projects that require extensive product development experience and understanding of our company's procedures and policies, and which significantly impact the work and/or effectiveness of PM.

  • These projects can relate to optimizing PM capabilities, systems and operations (e.g. leading efforts to improve planning systems/platforms, etc.) or to improving the functioning of teams and/or development processes.

  • Manage cross-divisional work groups and lead or input into improvements to processes/templates that support product development or project management.

Educational Qualifications :

  • Bachelor's degree required

  • Preferred:

  • Advanced scientific degree (e.g., MS, PharmD, Ph.D.)

  • Project Management certification/training (PMP) and/or coursework & training in Project Management.

  • Degree concentration in a scientific-related discipline

Experience and Skills:

  • Six (6) years of experience required in PM or related role/expertise in pharma and/or biotech or related role in product development/pharma/biotech

  • Experience in planning and execution of product development

  • Preferred: Twelve (12) years of experience preferred, or equivalent combination of advanced education and relevant experience and/or training.

We are a research-driven biopharmaceutical company. Our mission is built on the simple premise that if we “follow the science” and that great medicines can make a significant impact to our world. And we believe that a research-driven enterprise dedicated to world-class science can succeed by inventing medicine and vaccine innovations that make a difference for patients across the globe.

Who we are …

Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, New Jersey, USA is known as “Merck” in the United States, Canada & Puerto Rico. We are known as “MSD” in Europe, Middle East, Africa, Latin America & Asia Pacific. We are a global biopharmaceutical leader with a diverse portfolio of prescription medicines, oncology, vaccines and animal health products.

We are driven by our purpose to develop and deliver innovative products that save and improve lives. With 69,000 employees operating in more than 140 countries, we offer state of the art laboratories, plants and offices that are designed to Inspire our employees as we learn, develop and grow in our careers. We are proud of our 125 years of service to humanity and continue to be one of the world’s biggest investors in Research & Development.

What we look for …

In a world of rapid innovation, we seek brave Inventors who want to make an Impact in all aspects of our business, enabling breakthroughs that will affect generations to come. We encourage you to bring your disruptive thinking, collaborative spirit and diverse perspective to our organization. Together we will continue Inventing For Life, Impacting Lives while Inspiring Your Career Growth.





In accordance with Managers' Policy - Job Posting and Employee Placement, all employees subject to this policy are required to have a minimum of twelve (12) months of service in current position prior to applying for open positions.

If you have been offered a separation benefits package but have not yet reached your separation date and are offered a position within the salary and geographical parameters as set forth in the Summary Plan Description (SPD) of your separation package, then you are no longer eligible for your separation benefits package. To discuss in more detail, please contact your HRBP or Talent Acquisition Advisor.

US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

If you need an accommodation for the application process please email us at [email protected]

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We are an equal opportunity employer, Minority/Female/Disability/Veteran – proudly embracing diversity in all of its manifestations.

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully

Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails.

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Requisition ID: R65028