Are You Still Leaving Your Bioscience Job Search Up To Chance?

Are you gambling on Lady Luck and leaving your bioscience job search up to chance?

Tweet: Sending your resume to an online job posting is about the same as shoving it in a bottle and setting it adrift in the ocean.

message in a bottle

The chances of getting a phone screen call about 2% according to UC-Berkeley and that is if you have actually read and used the keywords in the posted job position.

The chance that any single recruiter has your job when you need it (not six months ago or two years from now) AND that you are connected to or link in with that recruiter right now is even less.

Job postings fill 20% of open positions and recruiters fill about 5%.

[Tweet “Chance is a fickle mistress and not someone to depend on for your livelihood. “]

Of course the other option will require much more work on your part (and you thought that updating your generic resume was hard!)

You need to be visible online so that recruiters you are not connected with can find you by using the keywords that they are looking for. How do you know what keywords they are looking for? You don’t. You can only know what keywords describe your skills, your expertise, your experience. When you use these top 10 words or phrases, and not fluff or buzzwords, they will allow the recruiter who does have your job to find you. But even better is to demonstrate the kind of problem solver you can be. No company hires unless they have a problem they cannot solve with the people they are already paying.

When the hiring manager, HR person, or recruiter searches online for someone to solve their problem they use the keywords that they use in-house. These keywords can be very specific to that particular company. You need to know what they are.

Since the company is hiring to solve the problem, and you have solved many problems, you need to know what the problem is, whether you want to solve it, and how to become known to the people trying to solve it before they can hire you.

You have many skills and many solutions to problems some of which never want to be paid to do or to solve. What problems do you want to solve? Can you sit down right now and list three interesting problems you would like to look at? Are they problems that companies are likely to have? What are the characteristics of those companies? Do you know anyone who is trying to solve these problems?


These are career questions job questions. Very few people think of being a barista as anything more than a job. In that industry the career path leads to manager or owner of a coffee shop and not to making the espresso machine work all day every day for eight hours. How do you think of your current job? Is it a career step? Or just a job you have so you can eat?

If you’ve been in the biosciences industries for any length of time at all you know that there are problems that be solved for every new drug target or lead. Which ones do you want to see again?

If you’ve just completed a postdoc, you have also solved problems, but some of them are not likely to be interesting to industry. Pure science simply doesn’t pay off in the market. Still you have skills that can be applied to industrial problems. Which ones do you want to use?

Once you have figured out what your keywords are, you need to use them in your LinkedIn profile Click here for a checklist on how and where to use them.

If you need more help with this I can do a quick LinkedIn Profile Review Click here for more information

if you need even more information and training about how to figure out what your next job should be and how to talk about it click here for more information