We use cookies. About our cookie policy

A day in the life of a Senior QC Microbiologist in the pharmaceutical industry

Posted by on

What is a Senior QC Microbiologist?

A QC Microbiologist test samples from different stages in vaccine production. Samples can come from the finished product or anything which goes into the final product.

Testing includes water filtration (samples from all the taps in the production site are tested to ensure they are clean), bioburdens and endotoxin testing. A senior QC Microbiologist tests the samples but also ensures that all data is inputted correctly and the results are verified.

What are the core responsibilities/ main objectives of a QC Microbiologist?

Their main role is to ensure the backlog of results are verified and signed off for processing. Until all results are signed off, batches of vaccines cannot be released. Senior QC Microbiologists must also distribute and test biological indicators for the validation of autoclaves and safety cabinets during their annual re-qualifications.

What does a typical day look like?

  1. Unlock the labs and check to see if there is anything urgent needing testing or results which need to be sent off.
  2. Plates and equipment are prepared for the days testing.
  3. Samples that need to be tested, are delivered to the labs from the production facilities.
  4. Technicians are designated tests that they must do for the morning.
  5. A QC Technician must make sure that any results that are produced on the day are read and recorded and taken for verification.
  6. Other priorities that are expected to be taken care of as a Senior QC Microbiologist, such as training, or organism identification.
  7. In the afternoon, further samples are often distributed to the labs, which technicians are again assigned different tests to deal with.
  8. At the end of the day when all tests are done and the results are sent off, the labs are cleaned and shut down.

What is enjoyable when working as a QC Microbiologist?

The role encourages you to work closely with your colleagues within the team and there are different challenges to deal with.

What is a potential route into the industry?

A potential route in getting into the pharmaceutical industry as a QC Microbiologist is by studying Biology as a degree and specialising in Microbiology. After the qualification is gained, people who become QC Microbiologists, first enter the industry with a graduate job as a Microbiologist and work their way up from there.

What is the biggest challenge?

QC Microbiologist’s deal with varieties of different departments, it is important to prioritise everyone’s needs.

What are the main skills/ qualities that are important for a senior QC Microbiologist?

  • Patience
  • People skills
  • Good eye for correcting mistakes

Get in touch

Here at RHL, our Life Sciences division specialises in Medical devices, Clinical Research, Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industries, and have lead in our field. With strong relationships with Life Science sector businesses nationwide, contact us to talk about our current vacancies.