Automation Scientist - High Throughput Process Development

West Point, PA, US
October 12 2017
Organization Type
Requisition ID: BIO004965

Merck & Co., Inc. Kenilworth, N.J., U.S.A. known as Merck in the United States and Canada, is a global health care leader with a diversified portfolio of prescription medicines, vaccines and animal health products. The difference between potential and achievement lies in the spark that fuels innovation and inventiveness; this is the space where Merck has codified its legacy for over a century. Merck’s success is backed by ethical integrity, forward momentum, and an inspiring mission to achieve new milestones in global healthcare.

Merck is on a quest for cures and is committed to being the world’s premier, most research-intensive biopharmaceutical company. Today, we’re doubling down on this goal. Merck Research Laboratories is a true scientific research facility of tomorrow, and will take Merck’s leading discovery capabilities and world-class small molecule and biologics R&D expertise to create breakthrough science that radically changes the way we approach serious diseases. 

Applications are sought for an Automation Scientist within the High Throughput Process Development (HTPD) group in Vaccine Bioprocess Research and Development (BPR&D), Merck Research Labs.    The HTPD group seeks to identify relevant process parameters and improve process robustness while minimizing resources and cycle time through experimental parallelization, miniaturization, automation, next-generation analytics, and informatics.   

The scientist will serve as an individual scientific contributor responsible for designing, implementing, improving, and supporting robotic platforms and automated workflows to enable high throughput process development of vaccine candidates encompassing multiple modalities including live/attenuated viruses, recombinant protein subunits, and protein conjugates.   The job function will require the integration of automation, programming, informatics, and bioprocess development, with the successful candidate working closely with upstream (cell culture/fermentation) and downstream (purification) vaccine process development groups.  

The primary job responsibility will be to deliver high throughput solutions to process development teams and support HTPD experiments as required to drive vaccine development.  The candidate will hold responsibility for a range of specific activities including, but not limited to: (1) participating in the development of HTPD platforms and associated analytics; (2) executing HT process development experiments; (3) operating and maintaining laboratory automation hardware, (4) developing solutions for HT data analysis and informatics, and (5) identifying opportunities for operational efficiency.

The successful candidate will have a background in biological science or bio/chemical engineering, with demonstrated strong IT/computer skills.  Proficiency in a general purpose programming language (e.g. VBA, Python, C++) and one or more computational/visualization tools (e.g. MatLab, JMP, Spotfire) is considered a strong positive factor, as is experience working with laboratory automation systems (e.g. Tecan, Hamilton, or Biomek liquid-handling workstations).    The candidate should be self-motivated, well-organized, have strong problem-solving skills, and be able to think strategically.  The individual will be expected to demonstrate the ability to communicate results of his/her work in both verbal and written formats.  In addition to the core responsibilities outlined above, the candidate will be expected to keep careful notes, comply with all required training, and maintain a focused attention on laboratory safety.  



  • BS degree in Biological Sciences, Chemistry, or Bio/Chemical Engineering or earned BS degree by Spring/Summer of 2018


  • Strong computer / IT skills as demonstrated through experience in programming (e.g. VBA, Python, C++) and/or one or more computational tools (e.g. MatLab, Spotifire, JMP) 
  • Experience in production (cell culture, fermentation) and/or purification of large biomolecules
  • Ability to understand and execute experiments independently in a manner that meets quality and time line expectations
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills required to interact with key stakeholders, customers, and external vendors
  • Well-developed organizational, record-keeping, and problem solving skills
  • Ability to work independently and/or in a team environment and is results oriented
  • Attention to detail


  • Experience maintaining laboratory robots and other automation systems, preferably with one or more of the following systems:  Hamilton, Tecan, HighRes Bio, Ambr, SelecT/CompacT.  
  • Experience with Biosafety Level 2 operations

Your role at Merck is integral to helping the world meet new breakthroughs that affect generations to come, and we’re counting on your skills and inventiveness to help make meaningful contributions to global medical advancement. At Merck, we’re inventing for life. 


If you need an accommodation for the application process please email us at


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Merck & Co., Inc. is not accepting unsolicited assistance from search firms for this employment opportunity.  Please, no phone calls or emails.  All resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at Merck via email, the Internet or in any form and/or method without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of Merck.  No fee will be paid in the event the candidate is hired by Merck as a result of the referral or through other means.


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Job: Bio Process-Purif/Recovery
Other Locations:
Employee Status: Regular
Travel: Yes, 5 % of the Time
Number of Openings:
Shift (if applicable):
Hazardous Materials:
Company Trade Name: Merck

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