Looking for Jobs Within the Pharmaceutical Industry? How to Pick One that’s the Perfect Fit For You

The pharmaceutical industry in Ireland is huge and it’s rapidly growing! It’s important to pick a job path you’re a good fit for. Doing so will help you find more fulfillment and purpose in your career. 

But various job types span many departments all within one industry. Some departments include: 

  • research and development

  • manufacturing and production

  • and marketing and distribution

So if you’re researching jobs within the pharmaceutical industry, there are plenty of opportunities! We’ll unpack some of the top jobs here. 

What Types of Jobs are Available within the Pharmaceuticals Industry?

When you think of jobs within the pharmaceutical industry, you may think of wearing a lab coat and protective eye wear. 

While that may be true, not all jobs fit into that box! So, if you’d rather have a different environment within the sector, that’s possible, too. 

Between a biochemist or marketing representative, there’s no dearth of opportunities to choose from. 

Jobs Within Pharmaceutical Industry: Research and DevelopmentA biochemist researches medications in the laboratory using a microscope

Research and development job opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry usually mean laboratory-based environments.

This may be part of the sector for you if you want to study, create, and perfect medicine. 

Job Type #1: Biochemist

Biochemists study medicines, which are made up of chemicals, and how they react with muscle tissue and cell development in humans. That’s where the name “biochemist” comes from - the combination of biology and chemistry as they work together.

Roles and Responsibilities

As a biochemist, you’ll need to:

  • study research projects

  • work within a laboratory team

  • and present your research to scientists and other associated departments

You’ll often analyse DNA, cell development, and the effects of medical drugs and food in humans. Get ready to use equipment like laboratory microscopes, lasers, and modeling software on your computer. 

Who is this Job For? 

This type of job in the pharmaceutical industry is perfect for someone analytical and who loves to conduct research. If the science lab was your favourite room in school, then an opportunity as a biochemist may be an excellent choice for you. 

Who is this Job Not For?

This is not the best job for someone who wants to work alone. As a biochemist, while you’ll have plenty of independent work, you’ll need to work in a team of other researchers. 

And it’s also not the best fit for you if you don’t like research. You may not feel fulfilled if you want quick wins and results. Or if you don’t like the idea of spending your time in a lab, you’ll want to pass on this option. 

Pathway for How to Get This Job in the Pharmaceutical Industry

To get biochemist jobs within the pharmaceutical industry, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree and  master’s degree in a combination of biology and chemistry. With this education, you can take your first steps into entry-level positions.

If you want to move up in the career field as a biochemist, you may need to pursue a Ph.D. to complete independent research and development. 

Find out more about our MSc in Food Business Management & Technology


Job Type #2: Clinical Research Associate

As a clinical research associate, you’ll take part in running clinical trials. This happens once certain medications have passed through the research and development department. Then they need to be monitored when used. 

Roles and Responsibilities

With a position as a clinical research associate, you’ll be responsible for: 

  • Setting up trials and conducting research studies on your patients

  • Checking how their bodies react to specific medications they take

  • Reporting your findings to your team and your superiors

Who is this Job For? 

This is an excellent job opportunity in the pharmaceutical industry if you want to help people better their everyday lives. 

You’ll need to be analytical because you’ll be collecting and reading data throughout trials. 

This is also an excellent job if you have an exceptional eye for detail. You’ll need to watch and note even the smallest details among your patients’ side effects!

Who is this Job Not For? 

This may not be the job for you if you want quick wins and faster results. Often, clinical trials can take a long time to complete and finding great results right away might not always be the case. 

It may also not be the job for you if you want to stay in just one office setting. Clinical trial patients may be located all across the globe, so traveling to specific offices or trial sites might be necessary. 

Pathway for How to Get This Job in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Having a strong background in pharmaceutical or life science education is the best way to get started.

Once you’ve studied biology, chemistry, or another life science, you’ll need to take an exam to become certified as a clinical research associate.

Our Degree in Pharmaceutical Business Operations will prepare you for a role in Clinical Research.

Jobs Within Pharmaceutical Industry: Manufacturing and Production

After the research and development phase, products go into manufacturing and production. And that means they’re built on a massive scale to be distributed to the public. 

Heavy machinery manufactures and produces medication in the pharmaceutical industry in Ireland

There are plenty of jobs within the pharmaceutical industry in this sector.

Read on to find one that’s a perfect fit for you! 

Job Type #3: Quality Assurance Technician

Quality assurance technicians make sure quality guidelines are met for medications and devices. 

Roles and Responsibilities

As a quality technician, you’ll be responsible for: 

  • Familiarising yourself with testing procedures and quality guidelines for the product you’re producing

  • Implementing guidelines into the creation of products

  • Inspecting medications and devices in a particular part of the production process

  • Creating reports of the production and presenting those to your quality assurance manager

Don’t worry! You won’t be responsible for every phase of production. That way, you can become a master at your one phase of producing the product, and you’ll catch anything that doesn’t meet guidelines. 

Who is this Job For? 

This position is excellent for you if you have a keen eye for detail. You’ll need to monitor the production of medications and devices and catch even the slightest mishap! 

This is also a great opportunity for you if your organizational skills are top-notch. Since you’ll build reports of the production process, you’ll want to make sure they’re easy to read and understand. 

And if you’re comfortable being around heavy machinery daily, then consider a position as a quality assurance technician!

Who is this Job Not For? 

If you find yourself more on the creative side, this may not be the position for you. As a quality assurance technician, you’ll need to abide by set guidelines and parameters. This may be a difficult part of the position if you love to tap into your creativity. 

Also, if you’re hoping to travel for your job, you may want to look at other jobs within the pharmaceutical industry. 

Pathway for How to Get This Job in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Like most other jobs in the pharmaceutical industry, you’ll want to have a bachelor’s degree. One in  pharmaceutical business operations is ideal. That will ensure you learn the correct guidelines for meeting quality standards. 


Job Type #4: Process Technician

A process technician works side by side with quality assurance technicians. Quality assurance technicians ensure products are of top quality. On the other hand, process technicians work to make sure the machinery is up to speed. 

Roles and Responsibilities

As a process technician, you’ll be responsible for:

  • Being acutely aware of how machinery operates

  •  Monitoring machinery and identifying any problems that arise from them

  • Making sure the production process runs efficiently by reporting any faults or breakdowns

Who is this Job For? 

This job is perfect for you if you are great with your hands and love to work around machinery. That’ll be your primary role as a process technician.

Your observational skills need to be top-notch, as well. You’ll need to be on the lookout for any faults or breakdowns in the production process. And you’ll want great organisational skills as you’ll have to create reports of the production process each day. 

Who is this Job Not For? 

This job opportunity may not be for you if you aren’t thrilled about being around heavy machinery. 

Much like a quality assurance technician, if you want to travel for your job, this may not be the right position for you. You’ll often have a set environment working in a manufacturing warehouse daily. 

Pathway for How to Get This Job in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Getting a bachelor’s degree in pharmaceutical business operations, manufacturing, or  medical device operations is the best route to take to start your career as a process technician

Jobs Within Pharmaceutical Industry: Sales and Marketing 

Sales and marketing is the final phase of the public receiving life-saving products. 

And there are plenty of job opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry that don’t take place in a lab. 

And some of them are within this part of the pharma sector! 

Job Type #5: Medical Sales Representative

A medical sales representative takes the product to healthcare offices and companies to promote and sell the product. 

Roles and Responsibilities

In this role, you’re responsible for:

  • Selling the product to doctors’ offices, pharmacies, and other professionals

  • Scheduling appointments to meet with healthcare professionals

  • Maintaining excellent business relationships with professionals to make repeat sales

  • Knowing the product inside and out so you can speak to it appropriately

  • Staying aware of competitors’ products so you can speak to those, as well

Who is this Job For? 

If you’re a “people person” then this may be the perfect job opportunity within the pharmaceutical industry. You’ll have to build rapport with many different healthcare professionals. So it’s an excellent choice if that energises you instead of draining you. 

If you love having a work environment that changes often, this may also be a great fit! Since you’ll be traveling to different healthcare facilities, your daily office space may look different. 

Who is this Job Not For? 

This is probably not the right option for you if you like to work independently. If talking to other people keeps you feeling exhausted, then a different job position in the pharmaceutical sector might be ideal.

Pathway for How to Get This Job in the Pharmaceutical Industry

The best way to get started in this job is to have a bachelor’s degree in life sciences, pharmaceutical operations, or something along those lines. You’ll want a good understanding of how medications and medical devices work with the human body. 

How Innopharma Helps You Land Jobs Within Pharmaceutical Industry

When you find the right fit for you, the next question to address is: how to get a job in the pharmaceutical industry?

No matter what industry job is right for you, Innopharma can help you get there! 

A young woman, who landed jobs within the pharmaceutical industry, sits in a laboratory to study medications

For the majority of these careers, you’ll need to have a degree in a science-based subject. And Innopharma is proud to offer many educational opportunities to help you take the first steps. 

Whether you need: 

We have something for everyone. 

Find out more about the multiple opportunities in our pharmaceutical programmes.  

Contact our team today

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