My First Year in MedComms…
Georgia is an Account Executive who joined the Bioscript team in June 2020. Since then she has led on a number of projects and executed several virtual events. Find out more about her experiences over the past year below.
MedComms is undoubtedly one of the career options that pops up during the frantic Google searches of a final year biology student. It first caught my eye in my second year of university during various careers events and meetings, and at the time it was difficult to imagine what MedComms really was, but the combination of science and communication sounded like something I wanted to know more about. I started to do my research and discovered plenty of resources and websites to help me understand the industry and distinguish between the different roles within it. It quickly became apparent to me that a role in Client Services embodied everything I was looking for in a graduate role; project management that had direct involvement with science.
I therefore felt incredibly fortunate when Bioscript offered me the Associate Account Executive role, particularly considering this was during the first nationwide lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic that the UK faced last year. This meant that I was inducted to the role and team completely virtually, and still to this day have not stepped foot into the office! Although this was certainly different to what I had imagined my first few weeks in a graduate role would be like, it was a positive experience, nonetheless.
My first few weeks in the role were spent familiarising myself with the likes of Excel, the finance software used across the company, email etiquette and the background of the accounts that I would be working on. An account usually refers to the company or client that you are working with and within the account there are usually several different projects. I was initially placed on an account that was oncology focused, but as the account and client base grew, I have been given the opportunity to work on rare metabolic and immunology diseases, and on animal health. The projects within an account can be a broad range of materials from manuscripts and educational slide decks to webinars and meetings, as well as more strategic pieces focusing on messaging associated with a drug. The main role of Client Services is to ensure excellent communication between the team and client and within the team by scheduling regular status meetings. This helps to ensure that we meet client deadlines and stay within budget for the project. Logistical arrangements, such as contracting external physicians who may be speaking at a meeting, are also discussed.
The very first project that I was fully engrossed in was an interactive PDF for the animal health account. The aim of the interactive PDF was to provide an overview of the studies and training that the company had done in Africa, in conjunction with a university, with a view to providing this to key stakeholders. This was an interesting project that demonstrates how varied MedComms can be. The project involved a number of moving parts, meaning that I had to liaise with clients, a team of medical writers and the editorial and design team regularly, as well as ensuring that the team adhered to the incredibly tight timelines that this project demanded. This project reinforced the importance of timelines and upholding good means of communication with clients and within the team.
A few months into the role, I was given the opportunity to be the main point of contact for one of our clients. This has allowed me to get to grips with day-to-day client management and the several different projects that I was accountable for. One project was a virtual educational webinar for haemato-oncologists/haematologists, which included clinical case studies and an overview of the latest relevant data delivered at recent conferences. This project was the first that I saw through from initiation to completion, from contracting and communicating with expert speakers, working with internal and external teams to develop all of the content required (including a website, web banners and invitations) to attending on the day and ensuring that everything ran as smoothly as possible. The webinar was a success and the hard work put into it was appreciated not only by the client, but also across the company. Following this, we ran a second webinar and are replaying it April 2021. I really enjoyed the hands-on nature of this project and overcoming various challenges faced throughout.
Nine months into the role, I am now the lead contact for a few clients and have managed to build good relationships, which is key in MedComms, particularly in a Client Services role. This allows me to gain exposure to a range of different areas and carry learnings across the account.
My first year has been a real pleasure, I have learnt so much and continue to learn more from the people around me every day. I know that there is still so much more to learn, which excites me. In my next year, I hope to be able to attend a face-to-face event. It’s been easy for me to forget that travel can be a part of the job in MedComms having done everything virtually for the past year due to the COVID-19 pandemic!
To find out more about a career at Bioscript, please get in touch!