Posted Aug 19, 2016

LSC welcomes the release today of the review on the skills needs of the Biopharma Industry (small & large molecule manufacturing and Biopharma related services) in Ireland up to 2020. The expert group from across all sectors of the Biopharma industry in association with the Department of jobs, enterprise and Innovation have produced a comprehensive report looking at the industry drivers, needs, roadblocks and opportunities.

Some of the key findings of the review are:
  • Ireland has developed a strong cluster of Biopharma Companies, which offers future economies of scale and has a good regional spread
  • Concern that the current skills shortages may threaten Irish industry competitiveness and attractiveness for future growth
  • 80% of respondents had more than 10 years of industry experience
  • 86% of graduates entering Biopharma have a Level 8 qualification or above (Level 8 = Honours level Degree)
  • Almost ¾ of graduates entering the sector are from a science, maths or engineering background
  • It is anticipated that Biologics manufacturing employment will grow from 6,700 in 2015 to 11,700 by 2020 (5,000 new jobs)
  • It is expected that 8,400 potential job openings will be created (between new and replacement demand)
  • The industry must work to raise awareness of Biopharma career options to attract the best talent into the industry, starting at second level
  • Third level institutes, training bodies and industry stakeholders must work more closely to deliver best in class educational and training solutions to students and Biopharma employees

LSC are firmly committed to the principle of continued professional development amongst Life Science industry professionals. We believe that the Irish Biopharma industry not only need to increase the size of the available talent pool, but we also need to deepen the knowledge and capabilities of the existing talent pool. While a focus needs to be placed on introducing more professionals into the sector through graduate programs and industry transition programs (such as those run by NIBRT), no less effort should be put into deepening the available pool of talent. We will never be the biggest biopharma cluster (in 2015 Germany had over 247,000 employees in Life Sciences versus Ireland’s 27,000), but we can be the most expert and hence develop a long term sustainable position for the Irish Biopharma sector.

View the full report at