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Merck Dir, Digital Operations & Innovation in South San Francisco, California

Job Description

Safety Assessment and Laboratory Animal Resources (SALAR) is seeking a head of its Digital Operations and Innovation (DOI) group to lead, prioritize, and support ongoing and new efforts to bring high-tech solutions to old ways of doing business. DOI seeks to develop safer drugs at reduced cost by modeling scientific data and data flows, applying optimization methods, time series forecasting, and machine learning to help prioritize future experimental studies, forecast demand, and advise on new regulatory paradigms. Prior experience in the pharmaceutical industry is not necessary, as we expect any new team member to learn and grow along with us.

We are in search of an influential leader with the courage to challenge legacy approaches and find the opportunities to advance our vision. The candidate will be proficient in fostering solid and productive internal and external collaborations, participating in relevant project teams and proactively maintaining open communication with relevant areas of the company, including colleagues across the our Company's broader global organization. This role will involve being a mentor to key talent throughout SALAR as we implement new digital solutions in a complex and highly-regulated environment. The successful candidate for this dynamic position will be an effective “player-coach”, flexing between mentoring, prioritizing, and assigning work to staff and tactically supporting key initiatives.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Ensure basic data practices enabling broad standardization and machine-readability are both understood and applied by the SALAR staff as standard practice; a key objective of DOI is to increase awareness and adoption of good data practices across the broader SALAR community

  • Leverage our Company's internal IT and business resources, effectively engaging related parties in our Company's Global network, and, where appropriate, external partners as well

  • Connect, share, and visualize scientific data in new and efficient ways

  • Design, develop and implement machine learning algorithms for drug discovery and regulatory science applications

  • Advance new automated detection methods for evaluation of the safety and effectiveness of therapies

  • Progress new approaches for understanding the translational relevance of nonclinical safety data to safety in patients

  • Create forecasting models to predict peaks in future workload projections

Education Minimum Requirements:

  • PhD or equivalent experience in computer science, engineering or related field

Required Experience and Skills:

  • Past experience staffing, developing and managing a team, including the ability to use soft influence to align partner groups is preferred.

  • Evidence of a broad knowledge of computational sciences which will include a deep knowledge in one or more areas of machine learning and analysis of high content datasets

  • Demonstrated ability to build robust statistical models from large scientific data sets

  • Proficiency in at least one computer programming language (e.g., Python)

  • Excellent collaborative skills with the ability to interact effectively with scientists in other disciplines

  • Strong team player with excellent communication skills and interest in learning about regulatory science

Preferred Experience and Skills:

  • Experience in healthcare, biomedical research, or drug development is preferred but not required

The majority of SALAR staff resides in West Point, Pennsylvania and a significant portion of the activities will be focused there. However, we support flexible work arrangements that would allow for the candidate to be located at other sites where SALAR staff reside which include Boston or Cambridge, MA, South San Francisco, CA, or Rahway, NJ. The incumbent will need to possess the ability to manage and influence individuals throughout a global network and be able to build strong collaborations independent of one’s home office location.

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.

Employee Status:




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Flexible Work Arrangements:

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1st - Day

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Requisition ID: R50441