PHARMExcel is dedicated to investing in future talent and supporting the learning and development of our staff who drive our business forward. By developing relationships with professional bodies and local universities, such as the University of Hertfordshire, we can help those with an interest in the life sciences to learn more and reinforce their first steps into the industry.
Providing an opportunity for young adults to get an insight into a STEM career is incredibly important. The UK economy suffers a loss of £1.5bn per year due to STEM skills shortages. Recommendations to improve this include addressing the attractiveness of STEM academic careers. This is why PHARMExcel is determined to help increase the awareness and attractiveness of careers in the life sciences by offering an undergraduate intern placement programme.
Katie Harrison, a psychology undergraduate student at Loughborough University recently completed a 12-month work placement at PHARMExcel. During her year at PHARMExcel, Katie gained experience as an HR assistant. She has written an article about her time with us.
I feel incredibly lucky to have been able to work in the HR Department at PHARMExcel for the last 12 months. Throughout the year I have gained important business experience as well as learning essential HR practices. It has been an interesting experience and has complemented my university course, teaching me more about people and their behaviour.
The HR Department consists of the Head of HR & Well-Being, and myself as the HR Assistant, which meant I got to be involved in all aspects of human resources activities within the company including recruitment, learning & development, compensation & benefits, resourcing, diversity & inclusion, and employee relations.
One of the highlights of the role was my involvement in the recruitment process, which involved organising interview schedules, preparing interview packs, and sending out invitations to interview. Once a role was offered, I was responsible for preparing offer letters and obtaining references. I also had the opportunity to be involved in the interview panel to find the next HR Assistant who would take over my role. Prior to my work placement at PHARMExcel I would have been too nervous to ask interview questions or talk about the role in this setting. Thanks to the support and training I have received over the year, my confidence has developed, and I was able to ask the candidates competency questions as well as answer their questions about the role and responsibilities.
I thoroughly enjoyed supporting the charity fundraising activities at PHARMExcel for Dementia UK and Isabel Hospice including raffles and quiz nights.
I have also developed useful skills such as communication, decision making, problem solving and management, as well as experiencing office culture. All of these will be useful during my final year at university and also in my work life after. When I graduate, I will be looking for roles that use the skills and knowledge I have learnt, and Human Resources in the pharma sector is a career path that I would be very interested in taking.
I am extremely grateful to PHARMExcel for giving me the opportunity and training to explore the world of HR in more depth.
Dani Harrison, Head of HR and Well-Being commented on Katie’s time at PHARMExcel, “We are very pleased to support university students like Katie during their placement year. Working in the UK life sciences sector offers diverse career pathways and the exciting opportunity to play a role in global health. Here at PHARMExcel we’re working hard to support career and skills development for all our staff and are proud to have been awarded Investors in People, Silver.”
PHARMExcel is committed to investing in its employees and developing a workplace that supports learning and whole person development. The company was recognised for its achievements in this area as finalists in the IIP People Awards 2022.
PHARMExcel is an award-winning, full-service Contract Research Organisation (CRO) providing a flexible and innovative approach to clinical trial delivery. The company is recognised for its in-depth knowledge and experience of the clinical research environment, particularly in the UK, and has a network of regulatory and industry associates, allowing it to provide a global reach.
Katie Howe, Head of Marketing
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