Top tips for Medical Affairs experts

Forscherin im Labor

Medical Affairs (MA) encompasses various functions and it is commonly known as the ‘command central’ of pharma. Experts have direct responsibilities throughout product lifecycles, interacting with virtually all stakeholders – both internal and external.

There are more career opportunities for pharmacists than ever, but it remains as a highly competitive space. As such, Manjit Kaur, Associate Business Manager of Real Life Sciences in Singapore led a virtual session together with the Indian Society of Medical Science Liaison (ISM) on the 15th of May. This webinar covers key insights within MA, as well as career advice to support the career aspirations of the MA community in India.


If you've missed the event, we have summarised the key points covered below

The webinar aimed to provide key insights within MA, and some key career advice to support the career aspirations of the MA community in India including the following:

  • Expectations of recruiters for Medical Science Liaison (MSL) roles
  • CV tips – writing the best CV to stand out amongst the competition
  • Interview tips – most frequently asked questions in interviews for MA and how to answer them
  • Tips for graduates to get that MA role

An overview of MA roles in Singapore and India

MA managers and MSLs whether in Singapore or India, generally work for pharmaceutical companies, be it big or small. They are responsible for providing medical expertise, strategic direction and leading the company from research to practical application of medication. They are involved in every step of drug development, from research and clinical trials to marketing and regional analysis.

If you are an expert who is interested to clinch a role in Singapore or India, be sure to keep in mind the following tips:

  1. Beef up your CV and Linkedin profile


“Hiring managers only take less than 15 seconds to glance through a CV”

Before you throw yourself into a new job search, the first step you need to take is to update your LinkedIn profile and optimise your CV. These platforms carve the first impression you offer to a potential employer. We expanded on these in our article on “Writing The Perfect CV”, which you can read in full here, and “Five top tips to create an impressive LinkedIn profile” which you can read in full here.


  1. Be equipped with regional exposure and amplify this in your resume


Hiring managers are looking for professionals who have been exposed to more advanced processes and structures within an international remit. Making the decision to work abroad forces you to step outside your comfort zone, which opens up opportunities to develop new skills and have new experiences. Nonetheless, if you are an Indian national looking to break into the Singapore market, it is crucial that you possess experience in a few stints within the Singapore first, before applying for senior roles.

Accepting a role in another country will help you to establish a network of valuable contacts. This will help you stay abreast of the latest developments in your field as you progress in your career. In MA, you will have a competitive advantage amongst your peers to be a specialist, rather than a generalist. Hence, it is crucial for you to equip yourselves with the right niche skill sets.


  1. Having a PhD or a degree won’t necessarily get you the job in MA


While doctorates and paper qualifications are highly looked upon in the pharmaceutical industry, recruiters and hiring managers are now focussing on the career progression, hands-on experience as well as regional exposure that talent possess. Thus, it is advisable that you highlight relevant projects that you have worked on in your CV so that your potential employer is aware of the skills you have acquired in the role.

Be sure to diversify your experience across the pharma industry and be active to try out sectors outside of your comfort zone. Having experience in clinical as well as digital technologies could potentially support you as the market continues to integrate advanced technologies to pump up processes.


Looking for more advice? Or even a new role?

As we navigate through the course of this pandemic, the job market is set to constantly evolve. We aim to keep you as informed and up to date as possible, to support you with your respective hiring and job seeking needs throughout this challenging time. Therefore, we recommend you keep an eye on our LinkedIn for regular updates. Please feel free to get in touch to discuss anything on the above or to find out more about the recruitment services we offer. If you are looking for the next step in your career then keep an eye on our live roles or upload your latest CV here after applying the tips from above.



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