Market Overview

The Coalition of State Bioscience Institutes (CSBI) Releases the 2018 Life Sciences Workforce Trends Report at BIO


"Key Findings Support Industry as a Leading US Employer, providing
1.73 Million Jobs"

The Coalition of State Bioscience Institutes (CSBI) released the 2018
Life Sciences Workforce Trends Report today at the BIO
International Convention
held this week in Boston, Massachusetts.
The report provides a national snapshot of the current and anticipated
talent needs of the nation's dynamic life science industry.

The industry continues to be a leading driver of employment across the
country, providing 1.73 million jobs in 85,000 companies. In 2017,
employers listed almost 264,000 postings for life science positions.

Building on the success of its three prior reports, the 2018 CSBI
Workforce Trends Report identifies the most pressing talent needs of the
life science industry and the key trends that are driving talent
acquisition. With the breakneck speed of new discoveries in the industry
and shifting global and regulatory environments, there is growing demand
for people with new technical and "soft" skills that can navigate this
complex wave of change.

"The CSBI report addresses a continuing major concern of our life
science executives: finding the right people who will develop cures for
patients and address a host of global health and environmental
challenges," said Peter M. Pellerito, Senior Academic Advisor for the
Biotechnology Innovation Organization. "It also points to important
trends - such as the importance of diversity, evolving technical and
soft skills, and innovative collaborations – that are defining the
talent needed to drive discovery in our vibrant industry."

"Because the life sciences are evolving so quickly, it is imperative
that we understand what is impacting the industry's ability to innovate
today:" said Liisa Bozinovic, CSBI Chair and Executive Director of the
Biocom Institute, "the skills, functions, and people who can keep us at
the forefront of discovery in a globally competitive environment."

In addition to quantitative analysis of over 50,000 life science job
postings and interviews with over 350 hiring decision-makers, the report
includes data from interviews with over 135 life sciences executives
across the country from which five key trends that impact their talent
needs are identified:

  • Rapid technological innovations, such as CRISPR gene editing, (CAR)
    T-Cell Therapy, and breakthroughs in fields such as computational
    biology, are creating the need for expertise in a broad range of
    cutting-edge technologies, including data analytics, 3D printing, AI,
    next gen sequencing, process integration, analytic chemistry and CAD
    design, to name a few. At the same time, evolving business models,
    dynamic competitive forces, and values-based healthcare are shaping
    the need for new types of operational and business expertise, and the
    ability to navigate new regulatory and reimbursement complexities.
  • While technical skills are important, life science employers continue
    to cite soft skills as a key determinant of success for their
    employees and their businesses – critical thinking, teamwork, written
    and verbal communication, problem-solving, adaptability, resilience,
    influence, etc. The combination of hybrid backgrounds and strong soft
    skills are highly desired, but difficult to find.
  • Regional cluster-specific challenges are impacting employers' ability
    to find and retain talent. Businesses in emerging regional clusters
    consistently cite the scarcity of local talent to help them build or
    expand their companies. In contrast, some of the more advanced
    clusters are struggling to recruit or maintain their rich talent pools
    due to infrastructure and affordability challenges, and compete for
    talent with other booming sectors such as tech.
  • Many life science companies cite the benefits of their diverse
    workforce, including the ability to reach better decisions, facilitate
    relationships with disparate stakeholders and better compete in global
    markets. Some have formal diversity initiatives; others state that
    diversity happens organically by hiring the best local or
    international talent.
  • Companies are reaping the benefits of academic partnerships, locating
    their R&D operations near academic institutions for co-development of
    technologies. They are also engaging with school science programs
    through internships, co-op rotations, and other creative
    collaborations to provide exposure and experience to students and
    future employees.

"I am delighted that we continue to hear about the innovative ways that
industry is partnering with academia to address its talent needs,"
stated Lori Lindburg, CSBI Workforce Development Co-Chair, and President
& CEO of the California Life Sciences Institute. "I think more companies
would engage in such partnerships if they recognized the ‘win-wins,' and
if they knew how. One of our goals at CSBI is to be a platform for
sharing and disseminating these successful collaborations to develop the
talent needed to fuel the next scientific breakthroughs."

Download key findings and full report here.

About the Coalition for State Biotech Institutes (CSBI)

The Coalition for State Biotech Institutes is dedicated to ensuring
America's leadership in bioscience innovation by delivering industry-led
life science education, workforce development and entrepreneurship
programs through a nationally coordinated effort. Programs are uniquely
positioned for life science industry to deliver, replicable in states
across the U.S., extensible to other STEM industry sectors and are fully
aligned with emerging K-12 Common Core Learning Standards. Learn more at
| @csb_institutes

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