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Merck Associate Director, Project Management in Boston, Massachusetts

Job Description

New hires based in the US & Puerto Rico will be required to demonstrate that they have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or qualify for a medical or religious exemption or accommodation to this vaccination requirement, subject to applicable law

Global Project and Alliance Management (GPAM) sits in the Research & Development Division of our Company.

The Associate Director, Project Management, is a core member of Early Development and/or Product Development Teams (EDTs and PDTs, respectively), partnering with team leaders to develop strategies, plan and execute our Company's drug and vaccine development and in-line portfolio efforts. Projects may be internal or part of alliance agreements with external research and development partners. The Associate Director is expected to provide project management leadership and to drive EDTs and PDTs, with sufficient influence and project management mastery to take on challenging assignments with minimal guidance.

The Associate Director may manage cross-functional, cross-divisional, and/or alliance governance committees and are expected to contribute to ongoing business process improvement and talent development in GPAM.

This position may be based in either Rahway, NJ or Upper Gwynedd, PA. 

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Independently managing projects in any phase of development (discovery, preclinical, clinical, lifecycle management) in any therapeutic area, including molecular entities of any modality (small molecule, biologic, vaccine, combination product). Projects range in priority, pace, and complexity, and may include one or more alliance partners.

  • Guiding teams through creation, management approval, execution, and termination/closeout of integrated project plans appropriate to the phase of development and complexity of the project. Harmonizing input from diverse disciplines (e.g., biology, chemistry, pharmacology, clinical, regulatory, access, supply, and other areas) into a cohesive and cogent project plan.

  • Contributing, synthesizing, and articulating program strategy to senior management and translating it into execution within the project team.

  • Collaborating effectively with functional areas, support functions, and alliance partner functions (if applicable) to drive project delivery.

  • Ensuring communications within and from the team are clear and effective, meetings have clear purpose and objectives, and that conflict is surfaced and resolved.

  • Leveraging relationships and networks to improve and enhance team dynamics. Proactively identifying and removing obstacles to drive business results.

  • Providing our Company's organizational and process expertise to teams to enable navigation of discovery, development, and corporate governance and business needs.

  • Ensuring adherence to project management standards, enabling sound decision making. Includes ensuring project schedules and risk management plans are fully developed and updated, governance contracts are adhered to, change control procedures are followed, enterprise databases reflect accurate project data, and data quality is maintained.

  • Partnering with Finance to ensure resources/budgets are planned and managed.

  • Communicating project status/issues and documents/presentations for senior management/governance committees/alliance committees.

  • Managing strategic, cross-functional or cross-divisional management, governance, or alliance committees.

  • Providing mentoring, coaching, and oversight to Specialist/Senior Specialist project managers working on common projects. Sharing lessons learned and best practices to positively impact the GPAM community.

  • Actively participating and completing ongoing training and personal development activities to increase leadership competency and to gain knowledge and skill in the discipline of project management and the business and science of pharmaceutical product discovery and development.


  • Bachelor’s degree required; concentration in a scientific or applied discipline strongly preferred

Required Experience and Skills:

  • A minimum of five (5) years of experience in project management or a related role

  • Demonstrated leadership and ethics; demonstrated ability to hold others accountable for delivery

  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a team setting, including demonstrated ability in building and managing teams, committees, taskforces etc.

  • Strong collaboration and problem-solving skills; able to establish good working relationships with employees at all levels, resolve conflict and provide feedback, and to devise and implement creative solutions to problems

  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written; demonstrated ability to speak up appropriately and to raise issues to teams and senior management

Preferred Experience and Skills:

  • Advanced degree (e.g., MS, MBA, PhD, PharmD) preferred

  • Background in the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industries strongly preferred, including significant discovery or product development knowledge/exposure

  • Project management certification (PMP) and/or formal coursework/training in project management strongly preferred


We are a research-driven biopharmaceutical company. Our mission is built on the simple premise that if we “follow the science” and that great medicines can make a significant impact to our world. And we believe that a research-driven enterprise dedicated to world-class science can succeed by inventing medicine and vaccine innovations that make a difference for patients across the globe.

Who we are …

We are known as Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, New Jersey, USA in the United States and Canada and MSD everywhere else. For more than a century, we have been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases. Today, our company continues to be at the forefront of research to deliver innovative health solutions and advance the prevention and treatment of diseases that threaten people and animals around the world.

What we look for …

Imagine getting up in the morning for a job as important as helping to save and improve lives around the world. Here, you have that opportunity. You can put your empathy, creativity, digital mastery, or scientific genius to work in collaboration with a diverse group of colleagues who pursue and bring hope to countless people who are battling some of the most challenging diseases of our time. Our team is constantly evolving, so if you are among the intellectually curious, join us—and start making your impact today.


In accordance with Managers' Policy - Job Posting and Employee Placement, all employees subject to this policy are required to have a minimum of twelve (12) months of service in current position prior to applying for open positions.

If you have been offered a separation benefits package, but have not yet reached your separation date and are offered a position within the salary and geographical parameters as set forth in the Summary Plan Description (SPD) of your separation package, then you are no longer eligible for your separation benefits package. To discuss in more detail, please contact your HRBP or Talent Acquisition Advisor.

Current Employees apply HERE ($1533/rel-task/3001$14.htmld)

Current Contingent Workers apply HERE ($4020.htmld)

US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

Our company is committed to inclusion, ensuring that candidates can engage in a hiring process that exhibits their true capabilities. Please click here ( if you need an accommodation during the application or hiring process.

For more information about personal rights under Equal Employment Opportunity, visit:

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EEOC GINA Supplement​

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Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination

We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively. We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace.

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully

Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails.

Employee Status:




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1st - Day

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Requisition ID: R132605