Getting into Med Comms
We take a lot of calls and enquiries from people who are keen to start a career in medical communications either as a medical writer or in client services. This article hopes to provide some tips and advice on how to maximise your chances of making it happen.
There is a huge demand for experienced medical communications staff at the moment and either starting as an Associate Medical Writer or an Account Executive offers a great career path – so why is it so hard to get noticed?
Medical communications is a dynamic and thriving industry and even at the entry level it is a very competitive market with many graduates and post-graduates keen to develop their careers in this area so be prepared to fight for your place at the table.
Many companies have a policy of not accepting entry level candidates through recruitment agencies so we always advise our candidates to take a dual approach. Firstly register with some recruitment agencies as entry level roles do come up, so your consultant can inform you as soon as opportunities arise. Your consultant will also be able to assist you with maximising the impact of your CV and providing general market and company information.
The second action you can take is to contact companies directly. At this point it is essential to do your research – pull together a list of companies that you would be most interested in working for; this might be based on location or the type of work that the company is involved in. Once you have this, contact the first couple of companies on your list explaining your interest in medical communications and including relevant and supporting information. Wait for a response; action any positive ones and continue with your list, honing your applications based upon feedback.
For AMW roles there will always be a writing test as some point in the recruitment process. The company will set you a task to complete which will allow them to assess your writing and editorial skills. The chances are that you will be asked to complete the writing test prior to any interview, so essentially your progression to the interview stage will be heavily based upon your performance in the test. As such, it is vitally important to allow yourself sufficient time without distraction to produce your best effort. If you pass the writing test, you will more than likely be invited to the interview stage. If you are asked to complete tests and you are not invited for interview don’t be too disappointed, take on board any feedback given and move on to the next company on your list.
There is a huge amount of competition for a relatively small number of jobs so you will need to be committed and tenacious in pursuit of your goal. For further help, information and advice it’s well worth visiting First MedComms Job where they have useful resources and information for people looking to start out in medical communications and for writers, the European Medical Writers Association is a great place to start.
To discuss starting your career in medical communications call 01932 797999 today.