How MSD develops early talent into leading-edge careers

Published date21 September 2022
Publication titleIrish Times: Web Edition Articles (Dublin, Ireland)
It's part of the reason Charlotte Smith, Grainne Donlan, David Kennedy and Sadbh Hegarty (above) all recently joined MSD. And it is the same reason Tipperary native Matt Maher remains there, having been recruited more than two decades ago

The organisation wants to retain its talent and, as such, creates numerous opportunities to climb the career ladder.

Maher, for example, studied food science before undertaking a master's in microbiology at University College Cork. Today he is associate vice-president operations and plant manager at MSD's Brinny site in Cork, a role he took up in 2020. He is also a member of MSD Ireland's leadership team, where he is charged with mentoring newcomers.

MSD Brinny specialises in the commercialisation and manufacture of novel vaccines. "My role leading the site is very diverse, that is what I really enjoy about it," he says. "No two days are the same."

Maher is a strong advocate for offering opportunities to what MSD calls "Early Talent" – new recruits joining the pharma industry for the first time – and has been appointed an Early Talent Ambassador. That means ensuring all new arrivals get the same holistic and comprehensive understanding of the pharma sector that he enjoyed.

"When I first joined MSD 20 years ago, I remember being struck by the sense of commitment to patient care and medical innovation," he says. "As an employee, you have tangible opportunities to be at the forefront of projects that bring real industry change and are able to collaborate with our sites across the world to identify medical innovations that have a lasting and tangible impact."

Employees at MSD Brinny collaborate nationally with the company's other Irish sites as well as internationally through the global MSD network.

A massive draw is the emphasis on learning and development - no matter your level, you are given room to innovate and learn

"It is hugely rewarding to have that diversity in your work every day. Another massive draw is the emphasis on learning and development - no matter your level, you are given room to innovate and learn," says Maher.

Within the MSD group, MSD Brinny is a leading facility for the development, testing and manufacturing of new vaccines. The plant has a successful legacy of developing and commercially supplying innovative biotech products, including some of MSD's most successful treatments for cancer care, hepatitis C and rheumatoid arthritis. The plant currently specialises in the manufacture of innovative novel...

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