Director, Automation Technologies and Operations- New York City


Deerfield Discovery and Development, LLC (3DC) is the drug discovery and development arm of Deerfield Management Company, L.P. (“Deerfield”), an investment firm dedicated to advancing healthcare, and is engaged in drug discovery research in collaboration with faculty from top universities across the United States. 3DC plays a critical role in identifying and progressing early-stage therapeutics from scientific discovery through clinical proof of concept, via rigorous due diligence of proposals, and design and execution of relevant experiments for approved projects. 3DC partners closely with principal investigators in Deerfield’s academic collaboration network, corporate and CRO partners to progress projects to value inflection points, and partners with Deerfield’s investment colleagues to execute the optimal monetization strategy for each project.

Title: Director, Automation Technologies and Operations

3DC seeks an experienced automation scientist/engineer to take a leading role in building and operating automation capabilities in both chemistry and biology to support our small and large molecule therapeutic discovery and development program as part of the Lab of the Future Project.

The successful candidate will collaborate with our teams involved in preclinical pharmacology, chemistry, AI, and innovation as well as broader drug discovery project teams to automate, streamline, and optimize laboratory processes. This candidate will also engage management with options and plans to deliver scalable automation solutions to meet on-going automation needs. The successful candidate will play an important role in coordinating our automation activities with those of external partners.

The successful candidate must exhibit an energetic and innovative approach to problem solving. Strong communication and interpersonal skills with a desire to work in a fast-paced, flexible and dynamic environment is required.


Key Responsibilities

  • Actively participate in identifying, assessing, implementing, and supporting automation solutions which can be integrated into our drug discovery and development programs. This includes systems for automating small molecule synthesis, LCMS for sample characterization and purification, and high throughput screening. Identify and incorporate innovations to facilitate continual improvement.
  • Assist with identification and implementation of key emerging technologies.
  • Directly responsible for platform selection, justification, method development, programming, troubleshooting, error resolution, scalability, and training.
  • Support a growing automation team and provide training to new users.
  • Design & implement workflows for R&D applications and production laboratory operations.
  • Integrate sample tracking, data transfer, and multiple instrument communications into laboratory information management systems (LIMS).
  • Provide scientific and operational support for multiple therapeutic discovery projects.
  • Coordinate automation activities with external partners in academia and industry.
  • Maintain the highest level of scientific rigor and professionalism within our organization.


Key Experiences

  • BS (MS or Ph.D. preferred) in biological or chemical sciences with deep hands-on experience in laboratory automation required.
  • Proficiency working with a broad range of automated liquid handling systems (e.g. Beckman, Labcyte, Tecan, Hamilton, Brooks) and integrated robotic system schedulers (e.g. HighResolution BioSolutions, Biosero, Thermo) is preferred.
  • Familiarity in adapting manual chemistry protocols and biological assays to automation systems.
  • Ability to program with Microsoft programming languages (VB, C#, LabVIEW or equivalent) and experience working with LIMS systems, SQL based databases, and electronic laboratory notebooks are big plusses.
  • Some Electro-Mechanical design/assembly skills are preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage timelines while advancing projects are a plus.
  • Understanding of fundamental principles for drug-discovery related disciplines, such as medicinal chemistry, DMPK, and in vitro biology strong preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a matrix environment and experience working in a global environment is a plus.

Key Skills and Capabilities

  • Collaboration and relationship building- Works well with others, leveraging skills to deliver high overall team performance. Is open to diverse perspectives and will challenge their own thinking
  • Adaptability- Anticipates potential issues and quickly changes course to maintain high performance levels, reacts quickly and positively when presented with challenges or new direction
  • Strategic Thinking- Identifies the critical data insights without becoming entrenched in detail. Anticipates future scenarios and builds plans that harness critical data and external trends and insight
  • Results orientation and team performance- Builds robust plans and objectives with engagement of others, drives performance against timelines ensuring a focus on safety, integrity, compliance, quality and service.
  • Coaching- Identifies strengths and development needs of others to drive optimal performance levels. Devotes time to coaching and mentoring individuals to accelerate their development
  • Communication skills- Strong written, presentation and verbal communication skills are essential.

Location: New York, NY

Expected Salary Range: $180,000 - $230,000 (Compensation will be commensurate with experience and expertise.)

In addition to competitive salaries, Deerfield offers a comprehensive benefits package.

Deerfield Discovery and Development provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to religion, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, alienage or citizenship status, national origin, age, marital status, pregnancy, disability, veteran or military status, predisposing genetic characteristics or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local law.


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