How COVID-19 has changed life sciences recruiting
Beacon Hill Staffing | 06.11.21 - 5:39 AM

The life sciences space has changed dramatically in the face of the pandemic. The need for everything from scientists to pharmacists is higher than ever, causing a surplus of jobs and bringing in a surge of new investors.

How has this changed recruiting in life science fields? Let's jump in.

More competition in the job market

Remote work has allowed for more competition between candidates and hiring managers alike. Without a need for new hires to fill positions in person, recruiters have access to a larger talent pool. Because of this, the bar for talent is generally higher, potentially making it difficult for candidates to get hired.

On the other hand, the most talented candidates are becoming more desirable, meaning they'll often have multiple offers on the table. Companies are taking notice, causing them to make hiring decisions at a faster pace.

Learning new technologies

Professionals in the life sciences field have had to adapt to new ways of working. Learning related to new technologies and software has played a major role in the transition to working from home. Researchers are having meetings about their studies via video chat. Positions such as auditors and site monitors, which usually require frequent travel, are now being done remotely.

The push for the use of technology has caused some companies to reevaluate whether they need humans for certain roles, leading workers to be replaced with AI. There are, however, positions that can't be replaced with AI, such as working in a lab and doing research.

Investing in life sciences

The pandemic has pushed venture capitalists (VC) to invest in life science companies. Given the necessity of medicine in modern society, life sciences companies have always been viewed as a safe bet when it comes to investments. Now, more than ever, venture capitalists are realizing substantial returns.

Life sciences are often considered recession proof, and COVID-19 has proven to be the ultimate test when it comes to this theory. Between the need for everything from researchers and salespeople to vaccine development and pharmaceuticals, there's no shortage of work to be done.

Life science startups are thriving post-pandemic.Life science startups are thriving post-pandemic.

Hiring for life science startups

With VC investment increasing in the life sciences space, new startups have appeared, opening up many new job opportunities. Hiring can be a hurdle for new startups, as they often don't have full HR departments like many larger companies do.

This is where an experienced staffing firm can make a difference, acting as an extension of a startup's HR department and taking care of hiring responsibilities that would otherwise require dozens of work hours for regular HR staff. After all, time is in short supply in such a competitive market.

More risk tolerance

Executives that were previously working at large pharmaceutical companies are now leaving and building their own startups. These startups are hiring a new generation of professionals that are trying to break away from the norm. Being a smaller, agile company allows them to be less risk-averse.

Startups can navigate decisions efficiently and get approved for funding in a timely manner, allowing them to keep up a fast-paced momentum; something that wouldn't have seemed possible less than 20 years ago. It's just this sort of pace that attracts new, highly qualified applicants.

Jobs are coming back

Many projects were put on hold at the beginning of the pandemic. Companies delayed hiring or stopped the process all together. Now that there's been enough time for these businesses to transition to digital work, the flow of open positions has gone in the opposite direction; there's a massive surplus.

Nearly every skill set in life science fields is in high demand, and there aren't enough candidates to fill the number of available jobs. Qualified candidates are receiving several offers, sometimes in multiple departments, and this doesn't seem like it's going to change anytime soon.

Recruiting is becoming impersonal

"Technology won't be able to

replace a conversation between a hiring manager and an ideal candidate."

Many larger companies are turning to AI and software to fulfill recruiting work often performed by staff or third-party agencies. With the prevalence of online job boards growing, the nuance of finding the right applicant is being lost.

While these platforms are capable of filtering candidates via their resumes, they're not yet capable of finding a proper culture fit. Though technology is advancing rapidly every day, it won't be able to replace a conversation between a hiring manager and an ideal candidate.

Predicting a company's needs

Understanding the needs of a given company can inform the hiring process, and it goes beyond a plug-and-play game plan. Taking a personalized approach to each business can be fundamental to a successful recruiting strategy.

Beacon Hill works to anticipate business needs based on an evaluation of a company's lifecycle and current events. We use our years of experience to inform our decisions while adapting a successful strategy to best fit your workplace so you can be ready for the future.

The future of life sciences recruiting

The landscape of recruiting, however, is always changing, depending on the needs of the industry in question at that time. Where to look for candidates, how to find them and how to communicate with them could look different year after year, especially at the rate technology is advancing.

Successful recruitment will hinge on adaptability. Taking on new technologies and platforms as part of your recruiting strategy is key to getting your job opening in front of the best potential candidates. What candidates value can shift, so understanding their priorities and preferences can be the difference between a new employee and a declined offer.

We'll help give you a competitive advantage

Beacon Hill Life Sciences is committed to identifying and delivering qualified candidates for nearly every life science field, from Biotech to healthcare and insurance. We'll identify the best possible talent for open positions at your company, whether you're the newest startup or part of the Fortune 500.

To learn more, check out our Life Sciences page.

This content is brought to you by the Marketing Team at Beacon Hill Staffing Group.

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