Life Science Industry Survey Results

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91% of Life Sciences Companies in Ireland planning to hire in 2017 and 2018.

In 2017 Pharmaceuticals and life sciences companies in Ireland are faced with many challenges, including pricing and value delivery, political uncertainty and regulatory requirements.  Despite this, they’re positive about their ability to grow their companies over the short and medium term. According to recent market research carried out by Innopharma, the industry reports that the availability of appropriately skilled graduates is currently the most significant driver required to sustain competitive advantage for the future.

According to the Price Waterhouse Coopers 20th CEO Survey, Pharma CEOs know that theirs is a global industry.  The Survey reports that Pharm CEOs’ interest in Europe has increased significantly over the last few years, with Germany seen as nearly three times more promising than in 2013 and the UK now featuring as the fifth most interesting market (11%).  Pharma CEOs are bullish about their own company’s growth prospects over the next year, with nearly two-thirds saying they’re very confident of growth.  This optimism is reflected by our own research in the Irish market which shows that over 91% of Pharma and MedTech companies in Ireland surveyed plan to hire during 2017 and 2018.

The PWC 20TH CEO Survey also reports that when asked to select areas to strengthen to capitalise on new opportunities, Pharma CEOs chose innovation first with human capital coming in second.  The drive to innovate has always been strong in Pharma but is even more imperative in a world where greater value must be seen to be delivered for less cost.  Our research on the Irish market reflects this.  As expected with the concentration of manufacturing operations in Ireland 55% of respondents’ companies are looking for skills in manufacturing operations and quality assurance.  The drive for innovations is also evident with demand for process development and validation skills also high with 55% of respondents saying they are planning to hire these skills in 2017 &2018

In the PWC Survey, nearly all the Pharma CEOs picked out leadership as important to their organisation, giving it the top spot, closely followed by problem-solving and creativity and innovation in equal second, with collaboration and adaptability in equal third.  Our survey reported that 84% of our respondents see a requirement for business skills such as business process improvement, decision making and presentation skills in addition to engineering or scientific qualifications.  Over 66% also stated that their minimum academic qualification required for new hires is a Level 8 Bachelor’s or Level 9 Master’s degree.

Recognising the importance of these skills doesn’t make it any easier to find the right people, though.  76% of our respondents stated there is a shortage of appropriately skilled graduates available to meet their recruitment and business growth needs.  65% also stated that the availability of appropriately skilled graduates is currently the most significant driver required to sustain competitive advantage for the future in the Irish Pharmaceutical/MedTech sectors.

Since 2010, Innopharma Education has been developing programmes for the pharmaceutical, food technology and medical devices industries.  With student coaches supporting course participants, industry experts delivering the training and industry liaison specialists engaging with companies daily, we have developed both a highly successful tailor-made process and team for successful industry training in Ireland.  For more information on our Level 8 and Level 9 programmes please click here