Associate Director, Lab Enablement
Posted on Wednesday, May 17, 2023
Ginkgo Bioworks is a publicly traded (NYSE: $DNA), high-growth biotechnology company based in Boston’s Seaport District, that is redesigning the living world to solve some of the globe’s growing challenges in health, energy, food, material, and more. Our mission to “make biology easier to engineer” is poised to disrupt multiple industries by leveraging our innovative data, automation, and scale capabilities in biological engineering.
Ginkgo believes that if we are to grow a thriving, sustainable bioeconomy, we must also grow a new market in biosecurity. Our biosecurity and public health initiative, Concentric by Ginkgo, launched a nationwide emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing end-to-end pathogen monitoring services to schools, communities, and travelers. As we continue to scale Concentric, our work is also evolving into new and exciting directions, from global expansion to the integration of new technologies and capabilities, including our Traveler-Based Genomic Surveillance Plan with the CDC.
The purpose of the Associate Director, Lab Enablement role is to manage, train, and support teams that evaluate and establish operational capability within potential partner labs in US and international locations, including introducing and transferring new testing methods, for both clinical and environmental applications. There will be a significant amount of focus on wastewater testing and sequencing. This exciting, challenging new role will deliver tremendous impact for our international programs by giving us more flexibility and leverage with our partner labs. It may also prove to be an integral service offering and potential revenue stream if we can demonstrate the value to our stakeholders.
The ideal candidate has a strong background in environmental and molecular biology technologies with protocol development experience and likes to travel. We are looking for someone with significant NGS wet lab experience (preferably multi platform) as well as nucleic acid extraction from a variety of sample sources. Wastewater sample processing experience is highly desirable as well as understanding the fundamentals of qPCR, ddPCR and dPCR. This role will also require someone with management experience who is creative, flexible, a good communicator, and able to work both independently and collaboratively. Proficiency in creating process structure and workflows is ideal.
- Manage and train junior lab enablement team members
- Cultivate and own relationships with a subset of lab partners
- Gain thorough understanding of partner lab capabilities and continuously identify new business and collaboration opportunities
- Work closely with Commercial teams to identify new lab partners, potential centers of excellence, regional synergies and testing needs
- Design enablement plans and be accountable for implementation. Set KPIs; monitor progress, milestones, and deadlines
- Through deep technical expertise in NGS sequencing and library preparation technologies, troubleshoot existing processes, perform gap assessments, and train partner labs as needed
- Building on a strong existing molecular biology background, keep current on metagenomics and pathogen detection literature and methodologies and contribute to Concentrics knowledge base and internal/external training materials
- Build a thorough understanding of wastewater sample processing and testing, by learning from lab partners, experts in the field and research
- In close collaboration with the Quality Team, translate lab enablement projects into repeatable playbooks and checklists
- Meaningfully and positively contribute to Concentric culture
- Travel internationally to perform lab assessments and enablement activities including inspection, hands on training and troubleshooting. Up to 40% travel to domestic or international locations (Africa, Middle East, etc.)
- BS in a biological or environmental science field with 7+ years of experience, or MS with 5+ years of experience, or Phd with 4+ years of experience
- Previous management and customer relations experience
- 3-4 years lab experience, preferably in a wastewater testing program
- Hands-on NGS experience (library preparation, sequencing runs)Ability to troubleshoot Illumina run issues from flowcell images
- Strong background in molecular biology techniques, including PCR-based detection and quantitation assays
- Demonstrated project management skills
- Remote or WFH, willing to travel domestically or internationally up to 40%
Preferred Capabilities and Experience
- International experience in a scientific setting
- Hands-on wastewater testing lab testing experience preferred
- Direct experience in nucleic acid extraction from a variety of sample sources is highly advantageous
- Experience with both short and long read NGS platforms
- Some NGS bioinformatics experience preferred
- Working experience in training and troubleshooting for field applications
- Strong background in molecular assays for various pathogen testing is desirable
Total compensation for this role is market driven, with a starting salary of $130k+, as well as company stock awards. Base pay is ultimately determined based on a candidate's skills, expertise, and experience. We also offer a comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental & vision coverage, health spending accounts, voluntary benefits, leave of absence policies, Employee Assistance Program, 401(k) program with employer contribution, 8 paid holidays in addition to a full-week winter shutdown and unlimited Paid Time Off policy.
Note on culture: Concentric by Ginkgo is a high energy, positive and fast paced environment where new challenges and opportunities arise every day, so this opportunity is ideal for people who thrive in those kinds of environments, and for people who like lots of variety in their day. There are lots of opportunities to learn and grow. The team is motivated by doing high impact work in service to society. To get a sense of the culture at Ginkgo, read some articles in Grow by Ginkgo, the company magazine we produce, which tells the story of synthetic biology in a Ginkgo-authentic way.
To learn more about Ginkgo, check out some recent press:
What is it really like to take your company public via a SPAC? One Boston biotech shares its journey (Fortune)
Ginkgo Bioworks resizes the definition of going big in biotech, raising $2.5B in a record SPAC deal that weighs in with a whopping $15B-plus valuation (Endpoints News)
Ginkgo Bioworks Provides Support on Process Optimization to Moderna for COVID-19 Response (PRNewswire)
The Life Factory: Synthetic Organisms From This $1.4 Billion Startup Will Revolutionize Manufacturing (Forbes)
We also feel that it’s important to point out the obvious here – there’s a serious lack of diversity in our industry, and that needs to change. Our goal is to help drive that change. Ginkgo is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in all of its practices, especially when it comes to growing our team. Our culture promotes inclusion and embraces how rewarding it is to work with people from all walks of life.
We’re developing a powerful biological engineering platform, so we must remain mindful of the many ways our technology can – and will – impact people around the world. We care about how our platform is used, and having a diverse team to build it gives us the best chance that it’s something we’ll be proud of as it continues to grow. Therefore, it’s critical that we incorporate the diverse voices and visions of all those who play a role in the future of biology.
It is the policy of Ginkgo Bioworks to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and employment applicants.
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