How to Get Started in Quality Assurance
Quality assurance is a crucial stage in the drug/device development process. Ensuring that the products or services offered by an organisation meet the required government standards before going to market. If you excel in tasks that involve attention to detail and want to build a career in life science, this might be the path for you!
To fully understand your potential within Quality Assurance, you need to know where to start. Here are some tips to kick start a career in QA.
Education and Training
First, you need to make sure you have the right foundations in terms of your education. A degree within life sciences, such as microbiology or chemistry, is a good place to start. If you have a master’s degree or Ph.D even better! Especially if you aspire to move into a management position quickly.
If you don’t have a degree, don’t be disheartened. Certification in Quality Assurance can also help you stand out in the job market. Each regulatory body will have a list of certifications that they reconise. For example, The American Society for Quality (ASQ) offers a Certified Quality Auditor (CQA) certification. Make sure that the certification you invest in is relevant in the location you want to work.
Gain Relevant Experience
If you have the relevant soft skills, such as analytical thinking and high levels of concentration, you’re already on your way. To develop your technical skill sets, look for internships or entry-level positions in quality assurance. Specifically in departments of pharmaceutical, medical device, or biotech companies. This will give you hands-on experience with processes and procedures.
Volunteering in scientific organisations or participating in quality assurance-related projects can also help you gain relevant experience. Make sure to keep a record of your achievements and successes in these positions as they can be useful in your job search.
Developing skills such as attention to detail, critical thinking, and problem-solving are crucial in the life science quality assurance field. Familiarising yourself with relevant regulations and guidelines such as FDA regulations, ICH guidelines, and ISO standards is also essential.
Proficiency in data analysis, computer skills, and statistical analysis can also be beneficial. Seek opportunities to develop these skills, such as taking courses or attending seminars or conferences.
Build a Network
As the saying goes – sometimes it’s who you know not what you know. The life science field is no exception. Attend industry events, join scientific organisations, and connect with people in the field through LinkedIn or other professional networking sites. Building relationships can help you learn about job opportunities and gain insights into the industry.
The life science industry is constantly evolving, and regulations and guidelines are frequently updated. It is essential to stay up-to-date with these changes to remain relevant in the field. Subscribe to industry publications, attend webinars and conferences, and participate in continuing education courses to stay informed.
By following these tips, you can increase your chances of success in this exciting and rewarding field. If you want talk about what opportunities might be available to you, get in touch with our recruitment experts.