In Focus: Regulatory Career Progression
Posted 01 April 2009 | By
Gone are the days in the not-so-distant past when most regulatory professionals happened to accidentally stumble into regulatory affairs (RA) or were asked by their employers to take on regulatory activities on top of their everyday work responsibilities. Today, RA is a dynamic profession critical to the success of any company, large or small, with employees dedicated wholly to regulatory functions. Regulatory professionals are sought after by government, academia, clinical research institutions and, especially, the healthcare industry. There are several universities and institutions offering master's degrees in RA, RA certificate programs and regulatory internships to ensure that qualified individuals are available and adequately educated to meet the ever-growing need for regulatory professionals. The demand for experienced regulatory professionals is so high that individuals who are otherwise qualified are finding it difficult to break into RA. Patricia Costa-Giomi's article provides some ideas for paths available to such individuals, as well as an overview of some of the factors to be considered when making a career move into RA. Also consider the array of functions and choices within the regulatory profession-it allows specialization in key functional regulatory niches (e.g., R&D, CMC, international, operations), while the core competencies across functions are often similar enough to allow a change in functional path within RA (see Joe Lallier's article).