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In RSSL we are customer focused, science led and results driven. Following on from our 30 year success story we are now offering a new role created to build on the success of our Biological sciences team, of which there are two key laboratories:

1.    The Biopharma department provides analytical research and development support to the Biopharma industry, focusing on protein characterisation, release testing, impurity testing, stability testing, microbiological testing including sterility and assay development and validation. Offering rapid turnaround testing to support the ATMP market, investment in cutting edge technology for greater provision of services and working with all our clients to provide an all-encompassing service (one-stop-shop). Based on a true understanding of client’s needs, expert scientific knowledge and experience and excellent customer service we are striving to become the leading CRO in the UK in our areas of expertise.

2.    The Pharmaceutical Microbiology team brings experienced scientists who are proficient in conducting sterility testing, endotoxin analysis, PET, environmental monitoring, disinfectant testing, microbial limits and water testing. Additionally, the experience of this team means we are able to work very closely with and partner our clients offering consultancy, troubleshooting and method validation all to a very high standard, which stands us apart from our competition. Practical exposure of GMPs within microbiology is key, with the acumen and vision to help champion and grow the microbiology business and offerings over the coming years.

In summary - RSSL provides a quick, accurate and authoritative service in biopharmaceutical products, enabling our customers to take swift action and protect their brands.

The role of Senior Group Leader will take responsibility for the management of the Biological sciences team to take the business to the next level of success. This encompasses management of contractual operations, delivery of budgetary responsibilities and maintenance / progression of the Quality systems and Health and Safety programme.  You will manage a team of talented scientists and be accountable for ensuring that work is processed in a timely fashion whilst adhering to the prerequisite quality standards expected by RSSL clients.

The individual in this position will have a solid standing and network in the Biopharma industry and have demonstrated the necessary technical knowledge and business acumen to further build and implement the strategic direction for business growth. Additionally, the individual has strong people management skills to influence, manage and motivate a diverse group of scientists comprising different disciplines and capabilities.

Technical and Operational

  • Set the strategic growth agenda for Biological sciences in collaboration with the Technical Specialists, Commercial team and Leadership team, mindful of industry trends and customer needs.
  • Build and maintain strong customer / external relations and ensure client expectations are met / exceeded.
  • Responsibility for Quality, and ensuring work is carried out to the highest standard, recorded as required to ensure GMP traceability
  • Ensure effective organisation of assigned workload, integrity of data generated and timely/accurate provision of results to deliver sales against budgetary targets.
  • Ability to coordinate complex multi-lab projects
  • Plan, allocate and administer resources to support business growth whilst managing the laboratory budget.
  • Responsibility for financial contract planning and interim forecast revisions.
  • Maintain a high level of competency in the use of the laboratories LIMS & data handling systems (CRM & QlikView) to effectively manage workflow & monitor financial performance.
  • Build and maintain technical acumen through connecting with Technical experts.

Communication & Influence

  • Apply strong interpersonal and networking skills to build and maintain effective working relationships with customers, partners and suppliers including generating new relationships
  • Liaise with internal partners to ensure effective communication of proposals and results.

Leadership and supervision

  • Accountability for selection, direction, motivation and management of staff. Effectively performance management and personal development of all direct reports to the required standard/ company procedure.  Ensure staff are trained in departmental methods and techniques and be accountable for maintaining a compliant training programme, ensuring a flexible team working environment. Ensure adequate resource to meet departmental commitments. Effectively screen and recruit individuals in line with both financial and strategic requirements. Support technical and compliance capability both within and outside of the laboratory.
  • Demonstrate strong organisational skills and a keen eye for detail.

Quality, Environment, Health & Safety

  • Ensure laboratory procedures comply with, and that staff work to, the prerequisite standards dictated by GMP. In conjunction with the Quality department, assist with client and regulatory authority audits. Keep abreast of changes to relevant regulatory and company requirements and contribute to the progression of the quality system.
  • Embed & maintain Environment, Health & Safety commitments and responsibilities. Write and approve SOPs and Test Methods.
  • Generation and approval of Risk Assessments and COSHH.

More about this role

What extra ingredients you will bring:

  • Proven ability to lead, motivate & mentor a diverse group of scientific staff to achieve their respective targets/objectives – ability to manage teams through periods of change and able to mentor junior staff to develop abilities.
  • Ability to plan strategically
  • High level of business acumen with strong ability to interpret, deliver and create new business opportunities
  • Strong communication, networking and influencing skills and an ability to build customer confidence and commercial relationships.
  • Ability to discuss and understand clients’ specific needs (internal & external) & to deal with queries as appropriate
  • Flexible and adaptable to meet customer/business requirements. Well organised and capable of working on multiple activities concurrently. Meticulous attention to detail.

Education / Certifications:

Science based Degree or PhD with significant experience in a laboratory environment and proven managerial experience. 

Job specific requirements:

  • Substantial knowledge of Quality as applicable the pharmaceutical industry (GMP); and the associated regulatory bodies guiding the pharmaceutical industry (MHRA, FDA). 
  • Proven track record of working/managing in a biopharma environment
  • Experience of working for, or with, a CRO
  • Knowledge of ICH Q6B biologic characterisation testing
  • Experience with ATMPs and/or biosimilars