Three Steps to Creating the Perfect Medical Writer Job Description

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What’s the secret sauce to creating a medical writer job description that helps you attract the most relevant candidates?
Whilst diligently created and curated content is rapidly becoming a necessity for almost any business with a digital presence, the medical industry has a few additional parameters to consider before hiring writers across their various domains. The usual criteria such as attention to detail, ability to communicate the brand’s vision and versatility to adapt to various formats of writing are still highly applicable. However, medical writers also need to have impeccable domain authority, the ability to juggle between various categories of medical writing and strong analytical skills.
So, if you’re putting out a job description for a medical writer, what are the pre-requisites that you need to emphasize? We break it down for you in three simple steps

1. Identify a Particular Writer Demographic

Writing in itself is a vast field, but even a subset like medical writer consists of a diverse range of niche segments. The first step of creating your job listing is to identify and list the category of writers that best suits your requirements.
Begin with a brief introduction of your company, the industry it operates in and the types of services you offer. This allows prospective hires to understand the ecosystem they’ll be involved in. This is also an ideal first step to describing your niche or specialization, which will help you narrow down the most relevant candidates instead of facing an overwhelming deluge of applications not even remotely suited to what you’re looking for.
The next significant bit is to clearly identify and spell out a particular category of medical writers most suited to the profile you’re looking to hire. This is again a great way to explicitly state your preferred employee demographic, instead of being vague at a broad level and having to filter out numerous irrelevant applications.
Looking for someone with expert knowledge on regulatory agencies such as the EMA? Edit your job description headline to include the terms ‘Regulatory Medical Writer so that applicants know that you’re looking for someone who can help you with product documentation, clinical evaluation reports and other paperwork aimed at getting your medical devices and agents approved under regulations such as EU MDR.
Alternatively, you might be hiring for a role that focuses mainly on creating educational content for doctors, lab specialists or general healthcare professionals. This might include training material for a wide spectrum of industries, such as biotech and pharma, across formats such as slideshows, instructional papers and handbooks. In this instance, your job description should be tailored to include ‘Educational Medical Writer‘ to ensure it speaks to medical communicators who work in educational and academic institutions.
Here’s a concise sample introduction based on what we discussed so far,
At XYZ Healthcare, we specialize in providing regulatory assistance to small medical units looking to shorten the journey from conception to market. We’re interested in you if you’re able to,
  • Present a rich portfolio as a regulatory medical writer, and are generally well versed in penning top-quality content in this domain.
  • Operate as the regulatory medical writing lead for advanced clinical regulatory paperwork, including compliance filings and prestige publications.
  • Serve as the point of contact for external strategy teams to discuss research methodologies, document strategies and final execution of significant compliance-related documentation, such as those related to MHRA and FDA.

2. Emphasize Relevant Technical Skills

Medical writers typically possess a wide range of technical skills that help them achieve excellence in their writing. These include,
  • Research skills that help them conduct an extensive investigation of the topics assigned to them.
  • Analytical skills to condense and simplify these topics for the audience they’re writing for.
  • An active interest to read up and stay abreast of current happenings, publications and advancements in the industry.
Highlighting these skills will ensure you attract applicants that are active in the same ‘knowledge pool’ that you’re scouting in, with relevant experience in core competencies such as interpreting, analysing and presenting data and statistics.
So, here’s how the next part of your job listing might look like,
As principal medical writer lead, you should be able to,
  • Assist the leadership team with well-researched thought leadership blogs on current medical compliance trends and updates.
  • Take complete ownership of relevant regulatory submissions such as IND, NDA & CTD.
  • Conduct periodic analyses to research, review and document these formats to organize and simplify further submissions.

3. Emphasize Desirable Background and Soft Skills

Your job description should specify criteria that are not negotiable, such as the medical writer being well versed with guidelines such as GCP (Good Clinical Practices). In addition, the writers you hire should also be strong in fundamentals like grammar, spellings and general communication skills. This will ensure they understand your requirements, helping them pick the right language and tone that align with your brand and resonate with your target audience.
Finally, secondary skills such as the ability to work well within a dynamic team team, multi-task and meet deadlines effectively are also factors you should spotlight in your job description. This will encourage applications with a demonstrated history of these traits to apply for the role, ensuring you choose from the cream of the crop. For instance, a highly versatile medical writer can complete a whitepaper on regulatory adherence and instantly take ownership of a creative product launch campaign that requires him/her to come up with promotional content to engage your social media followers.
Here’s how this section could look like,
The ideal candidate
  • Has authored ICF or CSR documents in the past, and adheres strongly to GCP guidelines.
  • Can out themselves in the shoes of of the archetype Med-Dev manufacturer, and understand their business needs.
  • Can set realistic deadlines and meet them efficiently, leading to increased ownership and productivity.

4. Final Medical Writer Job Description

This is how your final listing will look like,
At XYZ Healthcare, we specialize in providing regulatory assistance to small medical units looking to shorten the journey from conception to market. We’re interested in you if you’re able to,
  • Present a rich portfolio as a regulatory medical writer, and are generally well versed in penning top-quality content in this domain.
  • Operate as the regulatory medical writing lead for advanced clinical regulatory paperwork, including compliance filings and prestige publications.
  • Serve as the point of contact for external strategy teams to discuss research methodologies, document strategies and final execution of significant compliance-related documentation, such as those related to MHRA and FDA.
As principal medical writer lead, you should be able to,
  • Assist the leadership team with well-researched thought leadership blogs on current medical compliance trends and updates.
  • Take complete ownership of relevant regulatory submissions such as IND, NDA & CTD.
  • Conduct periodic analyses to research, review and document these formats to organize and simplify further submissions.
The ideal candidate
  • Has authored ICF or CSR documents in the past, and adheres strongly to GCP guidelines.
  • Can out themselves in the shoes of of the archetype Med-Dev manufacturer, and understand their business needs.
  • Can set realistic deadlines and meet them efficiently, leading to increased ownership and productivity.

Need assistance scouting and recruiting the best medical writers in the industry? Leave a comment below and we’ll get back with relevant personnel best-suited to your requirements!

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