Scientist, Automation Engineering - Vaccine R&D

Pfizer Inc.

South San Francisco, CA

Job posting number: #7122181 (Ref:4870327 )

Posted: January 26, 2023

Application Deadline: February 27, 2023

Job Description

Why Patients Need You

Pfizer’s purpose is to deliver breakthroughs that change patients’ lives. Research and Development is at the heart of fulfilling Pfizer’s purpose as we work to translate advanced science and technologies into the therapies and vaccines that matter most. Whether you are in the discovery sciences, ensuring drug safety and efficacy or supporting clinical trials, you will apply cutting edge design and process development capabilities to accelerate and bring the best in class medicines to patients around the world.

What You Will Achieve

The High-throughput Clinical Immunoassays & Diagnostics Team (HCID) resides under Vaccine Research & Development (VRD) and supports Pfizer’s vaccine programs. HCID’s mission is to develop, validate and maintain various immunoassays to support both pre-clinical and clinical vaccine studies. We are seeking a talented Scientist to join the Robotics and Automation team within HCID. The Scientist, Robotics and Automation will develop robotic methods in support of the preparation of samples for preclinical and clinical serology testing in assays within the Robotics and Automation team. The responsibilities include, (i) intermediate to advanced protocols design, scripting, testing, optimization and troubleshooting of moderately to complex liquid handler workstation and (ii) authoring qualification and validation documents and standard operating procedures (SOP), as assigned. The incumbent will work in a team setting and will share roles and responsibilities with other colleagues as assigned by the supervisor. Work will be done in a compliant manner according to applicable SOP and cGxP guidelines, as required.

How You Will Achieve It

Design and program robotic liquid handler workstation methods and processes in consultation with the supervisor, and develops and optimizes them independently (using intermediate to advanced level programming skills), as assigned.

Support sample preparation for preclinical and clinical serology in various assays using Hamilton and Tecan liquid handler workstations.

Responsible for qualification of equipment and validation of robotic methods.

Manage activities across several projects with minimal supervision.

Train analysts on established technologies and performs qualification of new equipment.

Author equipment qualification and robotic validation documents, including protocols and validation summary reports; author SOPs.

Identify process problems, suggest improvements, and initiate trouble-shooting.

Perform complex experiments and calculations, and discuss conclusions on the results obtained.

Manage 0-5 direct reports.

Present experimental results at group and project meetings.

Satisfactorily complete all required laboratory, cGxP and safety training, in conformance with departmental requirements.

Where applicable, performs job responsibilities in compliance with cGxP and all other regulatory agency requirements.



Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology, Biology, Biomedical engineering, Chemistry or relevant scientific field, with a minimum of 4 years of hands-on research experience in an academic or industrial setting; or Master’s degree with a minimum of 2 years post-graduate hands-on research experience.

Minimum of 2-3 years of programming experience using Hamilton and/or Tecan liquid handlers (intermediate to advanced knowledge).

Experience with programming languages, such as Python, R and/or JavaScript. Strong writing, communication and basic computer programming skills.


Experience with multiple liquid handler platforms would be an asset.

Experience with microbiological techniques would be an asset.

Prior management experience in a highly-matrixed and innovative research environment.

Managing large data sets in Excel or similar.


This position will spend significant time in a laboratory environment and must be able to wear all required personal protective equipment.

Physical requirements include: lifting, sitting, standing, walking, and bending; ability to sit for extended time at a biosafety cabinet.

Ability to perform mathematical calculations and complex data analysis.


May require support for site as needed beyond core business hours.

Dependent on timelines, work on weekends might be necessary on occasion.

Little to no travel required.

Work Location Assignment: On Premise

Other Job Details:

Eligible for relocation package

Eligible for employee referral bonus

Pfizer is committed to equal opportunity in the terms and conditions of employment for all employees and job applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, disability or veteran status. Pfizer also complies with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act and IRCA. Pfizer is an E-Verify employer.

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