Merck Sharpe & Dohme Corp
South San Francisco, California
Commensurate with Experience
May 18, 2018
Jun 17, 2018
Field of specialization
Work Function
Job Type
Full time

Merck Research Laboratories South San Francisco, a wholly owned subsidiary of Merck and Co., is focused on driving discovery research. Our new multi-disciplinary discovery research site offers state-of- the-art resources to explore the most promising science combined with Merck's world-class R&D expertise in small molecules and biologics. Located within the heart of the Bay area's biomedical community, research conducted in our new laboratories spans exploratory biology through early clinical development and is an integral part of Merck's powerful world-class network of drug and vaccine discovery.

At Merck, we are inspired by the belief that a research-driven enterprise dedicated to scientific excellence can create medicines and vaccines that save and improve lives. Every employee is building on our proud legacy of scientific breakthrough. Our ability to impact the lives of patients worldwide depends on the integrity, creativity, humility and scientific acumen of our team. We are creating a diverse organization that is inspired by invention and founded on a culture of respect and collaboration. At Merck Research Labs South San Francisco, you'll have the opportunity to expand your knowledge and skills through collaboration with talented and dedicated colleagues while advancing your career.


South San Francisco, CA

Job # RES002104

The Director, Discovery Process Chemistry is responsible for managing a portfolio of projects from pre-clinical pipeline of new Merck drug products.

Will have to direct a team of discovery process chemists responsible for facilitating medicinal chemistry research by overcoming synthetic bottlenecks to chemical intermediates and active pharmaceutical ingredients (API), streamlining SAR.

Accountable for successful transition of compounds from discovery research into development by closely interacting with discovery and pre-clinical research colleagues to maximize speed of transition to the clinic in accordance with preclinical workflows including management of API supply during this period.

Responsibilities include and are not limited to the following:

- Reports to the Executive Director of Discovery Project Chemistry, Process Research & Development in the Merck Research Laboratories organization
- This role has direct supervisory responsibility approximately (6-7) scientists who work closely within multidisciplinary teams comprised of synthetic organic chemist
- Responsible for the recruiting, appraisal and development of personnel under his/her supervision.
- Selects, trains, and effectively recommends transfers, merit increases, promotions, and closures of personnel under his/her direction within the framework of Company policy
- Critical tasks involve oversight of new route design and synthetic methodology development, scale-up, support of API campaigns in support of discovery and pre-clinical efforts; transferring appropriate technical information to support the preparation of API in Rahway, NJ and with external Contract Resource Organization CROs
- Proactive resourcing planning, risk assessment strategies and budget management will be necessary.
- Member of the core-team for the discovery review committee responsible for oversight of the discovery portfolio in a given therapeutic area, including influence in approval of potential candidates for pre-clinical development
- Establishes, recommends, and maintains external contacts for Process Research & Development, particularly locally in the San Francisco Bay area. Interaction with the local academic community is expected


Required: Ph.D. in Chemistry, or related Pharmaceutical Science

Required Experience:

- Minimum of (5) years drug discovery or drug development experience and demonstrated ability in leading cross-functional groups
- Track record and commitment to employee development/retention
- Strong interpersonal, communication, and collaboration skills
- Understanding of the interplay between medicinal chemistry SAR processes, physical properties and safety assessment preclinical study designs will be critical
- Subject matter expertise in process chemistry, especially with regards to early development is expected
- Strength in delivering results on firm deadlines
- Demonstrated ability in selection and prioritization of a portfolio of projects
- Must be internationally recognized in the pharmaceutical development area
- 10% Travel

Candidate will be based on the East Coast until transfer to South San Francisco location starting 1Q19.

Our employees are the key to our company's success. We demonstrate our commitment to our employees by offering a competitive and valuable rewards program. Our Company's benefits are designed to support the wide range of goals, needs and lifestyles of our employees, and many of the people that matter the most in their lives. If you need an accommodation for the application process please email us at

To be considered for this position, please visit our career site at, search jobs, create a profile and submit your resume for requisition # RES002104 to:

Merck is an equal opportunity employer, Minority/Female/Disability/Veteran - proudly embracing diversity in all of its manifestations.

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