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Job Details

Merck & Co. Inc.

Senior Specialist, Project Management



Full Time

On Site


West Point, Pennsylvania, United States

Job Description

Global Project and Alliance Management (GPAM) sits in the R&D organization at our company. The Project Managers and Alliance Managers in GPAM are core members of the discovery, development, and alliance teams at our company. Project Managers drive these cross-functional teams to deliver projects and products that improve human health and our company's business, and Alliance Managers ensure successful collaborations with our R&D alliance partners. The GPAM Project Management Office (PMO) is responsible for the development, sustainment, and training of GPAM-owned systems, tools, and business processes as well as alignment with Finance, IT, and functional area operations groups within our company.

This position may be based in either Rahway, NJ or Upper Gwynedd, PA.

The Senior Specialist, Project Manager - Development, is a core functional area member of Early Development and/or Product Development Teams (EDTs and PDTs, respectively), partnering with team leaders to plan and execute our company's development and in-line portfolio efforts. Projects may be internal or part of alliance agreements with external development partners. Project managers are expected to contribute to ongoing business process improvement and talent development in GPAM. Specific responsibilities may include:

  • Managing development teams that are of moderate complexity and/or work effectively with other GPAM professionals to ensure successful execution of higher complexity development team strategies and project plans. Projects may be in any phase of development (preclinical, clinical, lifecycle management) in any therapeutic area, including molecular entities of any modality (small molecule, biologic, vaccine, combination product). Projects range in priority, pace, and complexity, and may include one or more alliance partners.
  • Guiding teams through creation, management approval, execution, and termination/closeout of integrated project plans appropriate to the phase of development and complexity of the project. This includes integration of strategic and tactical input from diverse disciplines (e.g., biology, chemistry, pharmacology, clinical, regulatory, access, supply, and other areas), as applicable to the project.
  • Contributing to, synthesizing, and articulating program strategy and translating it into execution.
  • Collaborating effectively with functional areas, support functions, and alliance partner functions (if applicable) to facilitate project delivery.
  • Leveraging relationships and networks to improve and enhance team dynamics; with guidance from a more senior GPAM professional as needed, proactively identifying and removing obstacles to drive business results.
  • Providing our company organizational and process expertise to teams to enable navigation of development, and corporate governance and business needs.
  • Ensuring project schedules and risk management plans are fully developed and updated, governance contracts are adhered to, change control procedures are followed, and communications within and from the team are clear and effective.
  • Partnering with Finance to ensure resources/budgets are planned and managed. This may include tracking and managing partner activities that drive FTE expenses in development alliances, in partnership with the Alliance Manager.
  • Preparing regular reports that summarize project status/issues and documents/presentations for senior management/governance committees/alliance committees.
  • Maintaining accurate project data in enterprise databases.
  • Preparing for, facilitating, and documenting outcomes of team meetings, ensuring meetings have clear purpose and objectives and that conflict is surfaced and resolved.
  • Providing mentoring, coaching, and oversight to Specialist project managers working on common projects
  • Actively participating and completing ongoing training and personal development activities to increase leadership competency and to gain knowledge and skill in the discipline of project management and the business and science of pharmaceutical product discovery and development.
  • Providing significant input into the monitoring of GPAM processes and tools used to support the teams, as appropriate; advocate for and contribute to the success of change / process improvements when warranted.

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree required; concentration in a scientific or applied discipline strongly preferred
  • Minimum of two (2) years of experience in project management or a related role
  • Product development experience required; in a pharmaceutical / biotech industry preferred.
  • Demonstrated leadership and ethics; demonstrated ability to hold others accountable for delivery
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a team setting, including building and leading teams, accomplishing goals, etc.
  • Strong collaboration and problem-solving skills; able to establish good working relationships with employees at all levels, resolve conflict and provide feedback, and to devise and implement creative solutions to problems
  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written; demonstrated ability to speak up appropriately and to raise issues to teams and management
  • Highly organized and capable of working with attention to detail. Able to relate project details to larger project objectives.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Advanced degree (e.g., MS, MBA, PhD, PharmD) preferred
  • Background in the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industries strongly preferred, including significant discovery or product development knowledge/exposure
  • Project management certification (PMP) and/or formal coursework/training in project management strongly preferred


  • Yes, 5-10% of the time

We are a research-driven biopharmaceutical company. Our mission is built on the simple premise that if we “follow the science” that great medicines can make a significant impact to our world. We believe that a research-driven enterprise dedicated to world-class science can succeed by inventing medicine and vaccine innovations that make a difference for patients across the globe.

Who we are …

We are known as Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, New Jersey, USA in the United States and Canada and MSD everywhere else. For more than a century, we have been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases. Today, our company continues to be at the forefront of research to deliver innovative health solutions and advance the prevention and treatment of diseases that threaten people and animals around the world.

What we look for …

In a world of rapid innovation, we seek brave Inventors who want to make an Impact in all aspects of our business, enabling breakthroughs that will affect generations to come. We encourage you to bring your disruptive thinking, collaborative spirit and diverse perspective to our organization. Together we will continue Inventing For Life, Impacting Lives while Inspiring Your Career Growth.





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We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively. We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace.

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Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails.

Employee Status:



No relocation

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Flexible Work Arrangements:


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Requisition ID:R99332