An insight into the Quality Assurance Talent Pool

7 Minutes

Quality assurance is a crucial part of the life sciences product development cycle. Careers ...

Quality assurance is a crucial part of the life sciences product development cycle. Careers in quality assurance and control are important for ensuring medicines and healthcare devices are constantly of a high calibre, fit for purpose, and safe. There are several avenues to advance your career in this area within pharma, biotech, and medical device firms.

What are some key skills and requirements? 

Auditing, process management, and documenting compliance and regulations are among the duties of Quality Assurance Specialists. For those wishing to progress in their quality assurance career, some key requirements include obtaining a degree in life sciences, healthcare, or other related fields. In addition, gathering relevant industry knowledge around quality standards and production is essential.

Entry-level candidates will be given the opportunity to increase their understanding of the field through exposure to work on QMS, CAPA's, deviations, batch release, risk assessments and root cause analysis duties.

To be successful in this role, candidates will need the following:

  • strong written and verbal communication,

  • attention to detail,

  • effective time management,

  • statistical analysis skills,

  • ability to work under pressure,

  • effective problem-solving skills. 

A deep dive into the Quality Assurance Talent Pool

The demand for Quality Assurance candidates has increased across various regions in the UK, Ireland, and the Netherlands, with each facing its own difficulties in recruiting ideal candidates. The UK talent pool has seen a surge in competitiveness amongst large and medium-sized companies hiring quality assurance candidates.

Recruiting candidates from outside the UK can be a beneficial solution in most cases, however, with tighter immigration controls and visa regulations, this has proven to be difficult.  With everyone “fishing in the same pond” post-Brexit, companies are struggling to find ideal candidates with the necessary skill set and requirements. As a result, companies have found themselves with tighter access to talent pools within the UK.

In the Netherlands, the situation is reversed. There is an influx of Quality Assurance candidates, however, companies are struggling to onboard recruits within the timeframes required. Nevertheless, the Netherlands is renowned for being the number one in the life sciences and healthcare sector, investing 2 billion Euros each year into the market.

As a result of the UK’s decision to leave the EU, the European Medicines Agency had to look for a new European home, taking the decision to relocate to Amsterdam. As a result, the Netherlands has become a “hub” with many companies setting up their EU headquarters and distribution centres in the Netherlands and gaining access to an ample talent pool of qualified candidates. With plenty of opportunities, the Netherlands can be viewed as an exciting option for candidates looking to progress their careers in the quality assurance field!


A career in quality assurance in the life sciences is highly rewarding through the professional contribution of ensuring the efficacy of healthcare products. Despite the competitive talent pool across various regions, the industry offers excellent and exciting career prospects.

i-Pharm Consulting is a leading provider of staffing services in the quality assurance space working with a large range of Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Contract Research Organisations. Get in touch here to find out more.